Best Chainsaw Tachometer for Accurate Cuts

Getting the desired woodcut is no easy feat! To do this, you've got to develop or enhance your woodworking cutting skills. However, doing this without a chainsaw tachometer is somewhat impossible.

But here is the thing: looking for a durable chainsaw tachometer with top-notch features is quite a tough ask, and the various underperforming devices out there are not helping out. Unfortunately, this has led many of us to choose the wrong tachometer at one time or the other.

So what do you do?

We have done the difficult part of testing various products in the market and have come up with the best chainsaw tachometers to make your decision-making process easier.

Quick Pick: What is the Best Tachometer for Chainsaw?

Best Overall: Runleader HM032R Inductive Digital Tachometer

"Runleader HM032R is known for delivering exceptional all-round performance."

Best Digital Tachometer: Hardline HR-8061-2 Tachometer

"With its top-notch digital features, the device ensures you have the best, flawless cuts."

Best Small Engine Tachometer: Runleader HM011F Digital Hour Tachometer

"HM011F is handy and delivers precise speed measurements."

Best Versatile Tachometer: Hipa RPM Tachometer

"The device can conveniently measure the engines' speed of any machine and deliver accurate results."

Best for Battery Back-Up: Timorn Tachometer

"This device has a wonderful life that can last for nearly a lifetime."

Best for Convenience: SEARON Digital Chainsaw Tachometer

"The inclusion of a user's manual makes it super convenient to install and use this tachometer."

So, what is a tachometer, and why do you need it?

A tachometer is a device that measures a rotating engine's speed, also known as the RPM, to determine if the instrument used is functioning at optimal capacity.

Chainsaws need to function at an optimal level for precise and smooth cuts, and the only way to know if it's functioning up to par is simply by using a tachometer.

The Best Chainsaw Tachometers for Your Desired Wood Cutting

Here are our reviews of the 10 best chainsaw tachometers that will make woodworking super easy for you.

1. Runleader HM032R Inductive Digital Tachometer

Runleader HM032R Inductive Digital Tachometer

I have to admit that the Runleader Tachometer is one of the best wire chainsaw tachometers that I've ever used.

Using this device will not only improve your cuts but also make your woodworking super convenient.

What makes this tachometer great?

First off, it can read runtime and the engine’s RPM concurrently. The hours reading is up to 99999 hours, and the maximum RPM reading is 20,000 RPM.

One thing I find awe-inspiring is its unique backlight LCD screen, which is characterized by a greenish background with dark numbers. This boosts the overall visibility level, making it pretty easy to view the data at night.

Runleader HM032R measures the current RPM, records, and shows the max RPM of the engine. It also has a setting that warns users of overspeed so that you can make necessary adjustments.

What about the battery? Included in the package is a CR2032 replaceable battery, which can provide a good run time.

The whole device has a waterproof rating of IP65, so your device will function at an optimum level in light rain.

What We Liked

  • Large and clear backlight LCD screen
  • Waterproof
  • Easy to set up
  • Has a replaceable battery
  • Simple to use
  • Delivers accurate measurement
  • Saves data automatically

What We Didn’t Like

  • Battery life is quite poor
  • Some of the buttons are usually hard to press

2. Hardline HR-8061-2 Tachometer

Hardline HR-8061-2 Tachometer

Hardline HR-8061 is pretty much a device you need for flawless and accurate cuts. This device is arguably the best digital tachometer for chainsaw in the market currently.

Based on our experiences using the device and the features it comes with, I'd say this tachometer would make a great buy.

When testing the tachometer, I loved its RPM calculation timing, as it can read up to 16,000 RPM. This is quite impressive as some standard tachometers read way less.

It can record timing displays up to 1000 hours and take readings from your chainsaw at any point in time. This device can also work on 2-cylinder, 24 stroke gas engines, making its ability unquestionable.

HR-8061 is made of 100% epoxy encapsulated case and has an IP-68 rating, making it water-resistant. You can use the product in rough weather conditions, and it will still function at an optimal level, delivering exceptional performance.

What is the battery life?

You don’t have to bother with frequent battery changes. We love the batteries' durability as they can last for more than ten years without any replacement.

What We Liked

  • Waterproof
  • Battery runtime is impressive
  • Can measure RPM up to 16,000 RPM
  • Accurate reading
  • Versatile
  • Epoxy-encapsulated
  • Easy to install

What We Didn’t Like

  • Sometimes, the reading is inconsistent

3. Runleader HM011F Digital Hour Tachometer

Runleader HM011F Digital Hour Tachometer

Runleader Digital Hour is the best small engine tachometer on this list. It is handy and will help monitor the RPM and runtime engine.

When testing the tachometer, we loved how accurate it was in its calculation while the engine was on. The LCD screen is large enough and displays an accurate reading, which boosts the device's overall visibility.

More importantly, the tachometer has a high RPM range. It offers reading up to 16,000 RPM. Hence, it is incredibly efficient.

The versatility of Digital Hour HM011F is outstanding and is one of the things we adore about it. We used it on different engine systems, and it performed exceptionally well.

Our team likes that the device is weather-resistant and comes with a fully waterproof epoxy encapsulated case.

...And the battery? The CR2450 battery is long-lasting, and we love that it comes with a replaceable battery. Besides, the data stored doesn't wipe off when changing the batteries. Instead, it's retained.

I find the installation pretty straightforward. The addition of a comprehensive manual makes it even more convenient for beginners to use the device.

What We Liked

  • Delivers accurate RPM measurements
  • With a detailed set of instructions, users will find using the device straightforward.
  • Easy to install
  • Excellent battery life
  • Data is retained even after changing the batteries.
  • Great for smaller engines

What We Didn’t Like

  • Programming may be a little tricky.
  • May not work on bigger engines

4. Hipa RPM Tachometer

Hipa RPM Tachometer

If you are looking for a versatile tachometer that will work seamlessly with all brands, you should consider the HIPA RPM tachometer.

Unlike some sub-par devices, this HIPA RPM includes all sorts of tools that will make woodworking easy.

We love this tool for its convenience and versatility as it’s compatible with all chainsaw brands.

Before we go further into what this product offers, let’s take a look at its included in the package.

  • Ten pieces of a carburetor adjustment tool
  • One tachometer
  • One carrying case
  • Cleaning kit

What about the reading? The tachometer provides a real-time reading up to 16,000 RPMs, making it great for 2/4 cycle engines.

Although our experts didn't like that it comes with an in-built battery, making the replacement impossible, we like the 2+ years of service life it comes with. This ensures the durability of the battery, making it excellent overall.

Is it waterproof? According to the manufacturer, this device is waterproof. So far, it has proven to be slightly waterproof when we test run it in splashes of water.

Although this device lacks a user guide for beginners, its price point is incredibly low, making it the best chainsaw tachometer for the money.

What We Liked

  • It’s great value for money
  • Durable
  • Versatile and compatible with many chainsaw brands
  • Comes with cleaning tools

What We Didn’t Like

  • It doesn't come with any instructions.
  • The battery life is poor

5. Timorn Tachometer

Timorn Tachometer

Like Runleader Digital Hour, this is another tachometer designed for small engines.

Features-wise, the product is top quality. You can use this tachometer with two-stroke or four-stroke gasoline engines, and we found its use on a chainsaw expedient.

Speaking of RPM values, the product shows values of up to 99,999. It is, therefore, one of the best tachometers to use for small engines.

Installing the tachometer on a gasoline engine or chainsaw is quite simple. We didn't have to go through any issue or complicated process during our testing while installing it.

You are also provided with a user's manual when buying the product. Thankfully, the manual is well-detailed and comprehensive enough for the newbies to understand how to operate the device fully.

Timorn Tachometer is backed up with a CR2450 battery, which delivers excellent battery backup that will last for a long time.

Overall, this is a decent option that you should consider, especially for the price.

What We Liked

  • The engine meter is easy to install
  • Comes with a large LCD screen to enhance reading
  • Waterproof design
  • Compatible with all two-stroke and four-stroke gasoline engines
  • Extensive battery life
  • Arrives at an affordable price

What We Didn’t Like

  • The stored data will be cleared if the battery is changed.
  • Sometimes, it delivers inaccurate RPM readings.

6. SEARON Digital Chainsaw Tachometer

SEARON Digital Chainsaw Tachometer

If versatility and convenience are what you require in a tachometer, then Searon Digital Chainsaw Tachometer is the ideal choice for you.

Why? The device is compatible with chainsaws, ATV motorcycles, tractors, gas cylinder engines, etc. Also, it is relatively easy to program and can calculate the speed of an engine up to 25,000 RPM, with an accuracy level of 10 RPM.

The tachometer has an impressive resettable recording time of 99,999.9 hours. You can also program the timers from 0 – 200 hours, and there is a flash display that boosts the device's usability.

We were impressed with the CR2032 lithium battery. On usage, we witnessed the battery last for several hours. The battery life expectancy is about seven years, making the device a powerhouse.

Our experts love the large display, which will boost the overall readability for users. However, we were not too impressed with the black digits. At night, it will be fairly difficult for consumers to use the device.

What We Liked

  • Easy to operate
  • Easy to read display
  • Delivers accurate measurements
  • Exceptional battery life
  • Versatile

What We Didn’t Like

  • Installing the battery is fairly complicated
  • The dark digits will make the device difficult to use at night.

7. CyberTech Digital Tachometer

CyberTech Digital Tachometer

Whether you want to use the device on a chainsaw or on anything that rotates, the tachometer can handle whatever task is thrown at it.

Cyber-Tech Digital Tachometer comes with a high-intensity laser that measures the RPM of a chainsaw's engine and other engines.

Also, with its digital laser beam, this machine can be used to measure the speed of HVAC appliances. On top of that, the device features an auto-zero function that can store the value you want. We found this the best feature in this device.

What’s more? Our team of experts was satisfied with the display, as the device comes with an extra-large five-digit vibrant LCD to improve the overall visibility. This is better than the cheap quality displays found on some inferior, low-performing tachometers.

The device runs on 4 AA batteries and lasts very long on usage.

Overall, this is one of the best digital tachometers for chainsaws in the market, and I'm pretty confident that it would make a great buy.

What We Liked

  • Laser beam for accurate measurement of engine’s speed
  • Large, easy to read LCD colorful display
  • The device lasts very long.
  • Record values up to 99,999
  • Affordable

What We Didn’t Like

  • Not durable
  • The device is not waterproof

8. Neiko 20713A Digital Tachometer

Neiko 20713A Digital Tachometer

This is another digital tachometer you should consider for your woodworking projects.

We loved how light it felt when holding in the hands. The ergonomic design is top-notch, and the device will fit into your hand seamlessly.

Despite its lightweight construction, the device didn’t compromise on its features.

What are the features?

With the same laser technology as the Cyber-Tech, the device can calculate the engine speed's runtime up to 99,999, which is more than enough for a machine. Plus, the accuracy range is +/- 0.5%, which is fantastic.

The display? Neiko 20713A comes with a five-digit LCD screen, large enough for users to view the readings. Since it’s a digital tachometer, all you need to do is hold it a few meters away above the spark plug to get accurate readings on the large LCD. It also includes a 24-inch tape for non-contact, accurate measurements.

The device runs on three AA batteries and has a good battery life that will last for a lifetime.

What We Liked

  • Delivers highly accurate readings/ measurements
  • Easy to use
  • Affordable
  • Highly ergonomic and portable
  • Comes with a 24-inch reflective tape
  • Large LCD for enhanced visibility

What We Didn’t Like

  • The reflective tape doesn’t stick well
  • The battery holder often fall off

9. Husqvarna 502711401 PET-302 Chainsaw Tachometer

Husqvarna 502711401 PET-302 Chainsaw Tachometer

PET-302's clear LCD screen and accurate speed measurement are two things we love about the Husqvarna tachometer.

Another feature that we were impressed with while testing was the wireless option it offers. With the wireless option, you don't need to connect the device to the spark plug. All you need to do is place the device on the spark plug, and you are good to go. 

While the device's handle is not ergonomic, the tachometer is very light. You won't feel any burden while using the device with your chainsaw. The design is also sturdy and will withstand torture.

Our team was impressed with the overall feel of the device. It didn't slip unnecessarily while we were using it. I think Husqvarna did a pretty good job, despite not making the device's handle ergonomic.

Husqvarna 502711401 works great with 2-4 gasoline engines, and installing it is pretty straightforward. Since it comes with a user's manual, you will find operating the device easy.

The Husqvarna product is arguably the best wireless tachometer in the market. Our team was utterly satisfied with the overall performance of the device.

What We Liked

  • Easy to use
  • Have wired and wireless options
  • Easy to install
  • Clear LCD

What We Didn’t Like

  • It doesn't come with a reflecting tape.

10. Stihl EDT 9 Chainsaw Tachometer

Stihl EDT 9 Chainsaw Tachometer

In terms of experience and easy usage, no tachometer provides it better than Stihl EDT 9 Tachometer. This device is one of the first few products to offer dual usability options – the wired and the wireless option.

We loved how convenient it was switching from the wireless option to the wired one. The wireless option is simple and enables you to use the device without the injunction wire. Unlike the wired option that needs you to connect the wire to that of the spark plug, the wireless one allows you to place the device near the spark plug.

The readings were accurate, and we used the device on several engines. The LCD screen is reasonably big. However, we don't find the digits quite clear.

The device can work with single or dual magnet flywheel systems. Flywheel systems are energy storing systems that conduct and transmit energy.

Compared to other options, Stihl EDT 9 is a bit more expensive. However, we didn’t find it surprising, looking at what this incredible product offers.

The tachometer's refresh rate is once per second, which boosts its efficiency. The device comes with an in-built battery. Unfortunately, the battery's durability is not the best on the list.

What We Liked

  • Offers dual usability options
  • It has a digital interface

What We Didn’t Like

  • Quite expensive

Buyers Guide: What You Should Know Before Buying a Chainsaw Tachometer

Since we already discussed the features, pros, and cons of the best tachometer for a chainsaw, let’s move on to some of the factors you need to consider before buying a tachometer.

RPM

Okay! So during our in-depth review of the products, we mentioned that a tachometer could read the RPM of the engine of a chainsaw and other machines that rotate. Each tachometer has a limit in reading, also known as the range.

As a potential buyer, you should, therefore, know the range of the tachometer you want to buy. Some devices can read up to 20,000 RPM, which is sufficient for most chainsaws. Others may read higher than 20,000 RPM.

Quality

When it comes to the tachometer, the build quality is essential. Cutting down wood will expose you to many debris, specks of dust, and so much more. And if your chainsaw has a poor design, they will affect the device. That’s why you need to make sure that your desired tachometer is capable of handling the effects of your woodworking projects.

Power Capacity

I'm pretty sure you don't want your tachometer's power to run down in the middle of your woodworking project or last for just a few months before exceeding its lifespan. Therefore, you need to get a tachometer that lasts long.

The power capacity or battery life exists in two models – AA batteries and Lithium batteries. AA battery-powered tachometers are used with wireless chainsaws, while Lithium batteries are used with wired chainsaws.

We recommend that you check the tachometer’s battery’s life expectancy before spending your cash.

Size

Tachometers come in different dimensions/sizes. Some are more portable than others. Before purchasing a tachometer, ensure that the tachometer's size won't affect how you operate the device, especially when using it with a chainsaw.

Types of Tachometer

There are two models of tachometers available - analogue and digital tachometers. Analogue tachometers, also known as contact tachometers, are the older types of tachometers. This type of tachometer comes with a clip to wrap around the spark plug's wire to record RPMs. Comparatively, digital, or non-contact tachometers doesn't require any physical connection to record the engine's RPM.

Display

Tachometers come in different display sizes and display unit. While some come with large LCDs, others come with a reasonably small-sized screen. The screen's display affects its clarity and overall visibility level. So you need to make sure that your choice of a tachometer has a bright screen so that it can be readable both in day time and night time.

Memory  

The device should have an entire record of the minimum and maximum RPMs within a specific period. In this case, it would be best to look for a tachometer with digital memory.

Digital memory will save every data recorded by the device, even if the batteries shut down unexpectedly. The data will be safe and secure.

How to Use a Tachometer on a Chainsaw

Using a tachometer is pretty straightforward. All you need to do is follow some instructions, and that’s it.

Tachometers can either be connected directly to the spark plug or held near the spark plug. The latter is called a digital tachometer.

A tachometer records how many times the spark plug fires every sixty seconds. Each time the spark plug fires, the engine makes one revolution.

But before a tachometer is used, you need to make sure you do the following:

  1. Clean the chainsaw's air filter. If you don't, I'm afraid you won't get an accurate reading of the engine speed due to dirt.
  2. Pull the spark plug with needle-nose pliers and clean the spark plug arrestor behind the muffler.
  3. Make sure there is enough fuel in the tank. Sometimes the engine performance of a chainsaw is determined by the quantity of fuel.
  4. Start the chainsaw's engine and allow it to warm-up for about four minutes.
  5. Find the spark plug and connect the tachometer's clip to the wire. Or, if you have a digital tachometer, hold it about two inches above the spark plug.
  6. Note the reading.

Final Verdict

We can say with absolute certainty that choosing the best chainsaw tachometer will enhance the overall quality of your cuts.

Having tested all these tachometers, our experts have chosen Runleader HM032R Inductive Digital Tachometer as the best on the list.

It is long-lasting and has an impressive backlight display. Also, it delivers accurate speed reading and is durable.

Apart from HM032R, other quality products will give you outstanding performance, as evident in this review. All you need is to grab which one that matches your needs.

Thankfully, if you don’t know how to use a tachometer, there is a well-detailed user’s manual included in most tachometers. Remember to read it to get acquainted with its mode of operation.


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