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Thread: Mobile Milling

  1. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by John K Jordan View Post


    One hint for sawmilling or preparing to cut turning blanks from logs - if you have water nearby hose the dirt and rocks off the log first (pressure washer is better) to keep the saw blades sharp longer.

    JKJ
    Several years ago, one of the magazines visited a mill. They built a roller rig, using car tires to roll logs over slowly while pressure washing them. Looked like a roller skate, upside down on steroids. Very small gear motor turned the logs.

  2. #17
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Wrenn View Post
    Several years ago, one of the magazines visited a mill. They built a roller rig, using car tires to roll logs over slowly while pressure washing them. Looked like a roller skate, upside down on steroids. Very small gear motor turned the logs.
    Another method is an add-on to a bandmill which floats a carbide blade down the side of the log removing the dirty bark at the exact height where the band enters the log.

    A large commercial mill here goes one further - it has a debarking machine which spins the log and removes every bit of the bark before the log is fed to the conveyor to the bandsaw. (The HUGE vertical bandsaw!) This mill chips and sorts and collects everything that doesn't end up as a board. An amazingly impressive place to visit.

    JKJ

  3. #18
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
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    Near Kansas City
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    87
    I'm getting the itch for one of these as I have 40 acres of hardwoods and the tractor with front and rear hydraulic grapples to handle the logs. The woodland mills set up has the capacity to do 10' cuts. What is the reason for the hobbyist to need a 20' deck? Handling any cut boards longer than 10' would be a pain and handling logs longer than 10-12' that have any diameter become much more difficult as well.
    Also, is there any market for selling cut walnut that has not been completely air or kiln dried? In other words sell it for a discounted price so that I don't have to deal with a volume of wood drying for a year. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

  4. #19
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by Don Frank View Post
    I'm getting the itch for one of these as I have 40 acres of hardwoods and the tractor with front and rear hydraulic grapples to handle the logs. The woodland mills set up has the capacity to do 10' cuts. What is the reason for the hobbyist to need a 20' deck? Handling any cut boards longer than 10' would be a pain and handling logs longer than 10-12' that have any diameter become much more difficult as well.
    Also, is there any market for selling cut walnut that has not been completely air or kiln dried? In other words sell it for a discounted price so that I don't have to deal with a volume of wood drying for a year. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
    My Woodmizer has bolt-together sections. I bought an extra one with a theoretical capacity for a 17' log. I rarely cut such long logs although I did cut a 16'er once and trimmed 16' 6x6s for construction. But one advantage of having a longer bed is more maneuvering space in front and behind the log. His is handy when loading, clamping, and when measuring and aligning the log with wedges for the best cut.

    I thought most band mills could be extended like this but I don't know. Mine stays in one place - I didn't buy the trailer kit.

    BTW, I have occasionally sawed logs that my 40hp tractor couldn't lift with bucket hooks. Before I got bigger equipment, I'd rig up a ramp and use the tractor to push the log up the ramp and onto the mill. I also mounted some hooks further back on the boom where the lift height was less but the weight capacity was greater.

    Market depends on your area and your advertising. Before I got a mill I would buy walnut and other species green directly from a mill for a huge discount and sticker to dry. A local mill sells green and partially air dried wood. I have always found people interested in slabs, dry or not. Also, there is often an interest in cants suitable to make mantles, they haven't cared or asked about dryness. When cutting thick beams, I take care to saw so the grain is as straight as possible down the beam in both directions. This minimizes or prevents twisting during drying.

    If you start sawing a lot, you might sign up with some service like WoodFinder so people can find you. Or advertise on Craigslist or some local method.

    JKJ

  5. #20
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    WNY
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    6,675
    Quote Originally Posted by Don Frank View Post
    I'm getting the itch for one of these as I have 40 acres of hardwoods and the tractor with front and rear hydraulic grapples to handle the logs. The woodland mills set up has the capacity to do 10' cuts. What is the reason for the hobbyist to need a 20' deck? Handling any cut boards longer than 10' would be a pain and handling logs longer than 10-12' that have any diameter become much more difficult as well.
    Also, is there any market for selling cut walnut that has not been completely air or kiln dried? In other words sell it for a discounted price so that I don't have to deal with a volume of wood drying for a year. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
    As John said, a longer deck makes loading logs easier. Woodland Mills offers an extension to give about a 16' 6" capacity on the trailer package, and probably unlimited capacity for a ground unit. I don't have a front end loader and getting a 10' log on my mill is nearly impossible. I cut everything to 9'6" or less.

    Lots of guys around me are hawking "freshly cut" or "been air drying for months" slabs. They must sell them at least once to people, but I wonder how many come back a second time. A friend and I are proving that you can sell dry slabs for a premium, and if you can offer them surfaced you can charge even more and also expand your sales because there are many folks who want a slab but only some have the means to do something with it besides sand and finish it. It all depends upon how you want to go about it.

    While I currently only sell KD stuff, I think slab coffee tables, etc. don't need to be dried to 7%. 10 - 12% is probably OK for anything that's not going to get ripped, planed, etc. like is needed to make cabinets and furniture. If you can get it that low by air drying then I'd seriously consider that approach rather than selling green wood.

    John
    Last edited by John TenEyck; 07-29-2020 at 5:43 PM.

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