LumberJocks

Lumber Making #7: The First Slabbing Cut

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Blog entry by Dorje posted 11-23-2007 05:34 AM 5234 reads 1 time favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 6: Maple Milling - Initial Halving Cut Part 7 of Lumber Making series Part 8: Continuing the First Half - Hit a Nail. »

On the same cold, crisp, gorgeous day in Sunny Seattle…the next thing we did was mount a 2×12x12 to the top of the 1st half of the maple log as a guide board to establish our first flat face from which we could continue to cut with just the chainsaw mill. The 2×12 had 2×2 runners screwed on to it to keep it flat and a wee bit more ridgid. One hooked over the edge, while the other was inset a few inches to “shim” the board to “level” it out (all things being relative). You can’t see this one in the photos.
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Once we put the harness on the saw and set our depth to clear the screws holding the guide board to the log we were ready to roll…
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. Here’s a short video of the end of that cut…
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-- Dorje (pronounced "door-jay"), Seattle, WA



15 comments so far

View Damian Penney's profile

Damian Penney

1140 posts in 2743 days


#1 posted 11-23-2007 06:08 AM

Holy smokes that looks fun :)

-- I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

View David's profile

David

1970 posts in 2890 days


#2 posted 11-23-2007 06:15 AM

Dorje -

Another great blog entry and video!

-- http://foldingrule.blogspot.com

View cajunpen's profile

cajunpen

14432 posts in 2817 days


#3 posted 11-23-2007 07:12 AM

Wow, that is neat. Thanks for the update – looking forward to seeing the progress and more importantly the finished product.

-- Bill - "Suit yourself and let the rest be pleased." http://www.cajunpen.com/

View Karson's profile

Karson

34916 posts in 3152 days


#4 posted 11-23-2007 07:13 AM

Great.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware karson_morrison@bigfoot.com †

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6702 posts in 2731 days


#5 posted 11-23-2007 10:21 AM

Very neat Dorje!

Thanks for posting.

Lee

-- by Lee A. Jesberger http://www.prowoodworkingtips.com http://www.ezee-feed.com

View dalec's profile

dalec

613 posts in 2640 days


#6 posted 11-23-2007 11:32 AM

Dorje,

This is pretty neat.

Wanted to ask, where did you get the chainsaw mill? How long did it take to cut a slab once you set up the fence and mounted the saw to the harness?

The reason I am asking is because I may have several fair size alders (one may be 24-30” in diameter) that need to come cut down in the near future.

Dalec

View MsDebbieP's profile

MsDebbieP

18615 posts in 2912 days


#7 posted 11-23-2007 11:54 AM

yah… when our maple is ready to come down, we are going to have to get our hands on such a setup so it doesn’t go towards firewood this time.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (https://www.facebook.com/DebbiePribeleENJOConsultant)

View Dorje's profile

Dorje

1763 posts in 2748 days


#8 posted 11-23-2007 06:00 PM

Dale and Deb – you can get the chainsaw milling attachments at Granberg Intl., the manufacturer of the mill and ther items. Lee Valley also sells some of their products. i just looked for them and couldn’t find them there though…(they always were hard to find on that site).

The cuts didn’t take terribly long, a few minutes each. Longer on the boards with more mass and density. This maple was on it’s way out, so it didn’t have the integrity that a solid green/wet maple would have. I think that saved us some time. I’ve heard that on big logs, where you’re cutting full width, the cuts can take 10-15 minutes a piece. With the time factor in mind, I decided to cut everything to 2-3/8ths to get a little over 8/4 stock and to save time cutting. Softwood cuts a heck of a lot faster than hardwood too…

-- Dorje (pronounced "door-jay"), Seattle, WA

View dalec's profile

dalec

613 posts in 2640 days


#9 posted 11-23-2007 06:10 PM

Dorje, Thanks for the info.

I am thinking there is an off chance that I may be able to have access to those alders. If so, I would not mind having the option to mill the logs. Very unlikely that I will be getting into the milling business. Do you know if this equipment can be rented? I should be able to use my Brother’s chainsaw. I do not know how long his chainsaw bar is nor the size of his chainsaw.

Dalec

View schroeder's profile

schroeder

681 posts in 2877 days


#10 posted 11-23-2007 06:36 PM

Dorje – Looks like great fun & Very nice looking wood! – Whats the angle your putting on the teeth? (if any) – I’ve read that 10 degrees is the optimum – your thoughts?

-- The Gnarly Wood Shoppe

View Paul's profile

Paul

649 posts in 2844 days


#11 posted 11-23-2007 06:52 PM

Dorje -

What do you hope to make from the lumber? The spalting will be striking, I’m sure. But my gut feeling would have been to avoid that log. The bark shows a lot of twisting (maybe that’s why you chose it?) and won’t that internal wood tension reveal itself in twisted boards as it dries? Or since the log is at this stage of decay, there’s different dynamics in drying?

I’m a pure novice on this subject, but I took a short tour in the woods with a chairmaker once. He pointed out how the bark reveals – or at least gives clues – to the nature of the grain within. He told us to look for straight bark pattern up the length of the trunk for green riving of straight grain chair parts within the log. The additional mental note I took was the same for milling boards – if and when, someday.

-- Paul, Texas

View clieb91's profile

clieb91

3314 posts in 2686 days


#12 posted 11-23-2007 09:32 PM

Dorje,
Thanks for this series of posts, I am looking forward to the additional ones. I have been pushing around the idea of milling some wood for a while. May start to consider it more seriously.

Great looking wood.

CtL

-- Chris L. "Don't Dream it, Be it."- PortablePastimes.com (Purveyors of Portable Fun and Fidgets)

View Brad_Nailor's profile

Brad_Nailor

2532 posts in 2709 days


#13 posted 11-23-2007 10:57 PM

Wow, that is a cool and dangerous looking rig! I wish I did that to my white oak I took down this summer..would have made some great boards!

-- http://www.facebook.com/pages/DSO-Designs/297237806954248

View Dorje's profile

Dorje

1763 posts in 2748 days


#14 posted 11-24-2007 04:16 AM

schroeder – On my little 20” saw, I filed a standard chain to 10 degrees to rip and it worked great. For this set-up I bought a ripping chain from Granberg (the manufacturer of the mill). The configuration of the teeth is pretty interesting:

Although they have different angles in the photo, all the teeth seemed to be ground at 10 degrees…

When we sharpened it up, we put 10 on the clearing cutters and 15degrees on the scoring cutters.

Paul – When I first saw the log, I was on the fence, but I knew there was going to be some really interesting patterns within and wanted to go ahead and mill it, primarily for the experience. So, I just went for it. I’ve heard/read the same types of things re: reading the bark and what have you. I did in part want to open it up becasue of how interesting the bark looked – much of it is rather burl-esque. I do think that this lumber will dry fairly well. Much of the heart is fairly dry, so I think there will be less stresses working against each other. Also, I cut it a bit thick to be on the safe side too. RE: What I’ll so with it…I consider this picture wood, or wood that tells some kind of story and would need to be framed for doors or used and shaped for solid doors. Others may like tables of this stuff…who knows! Many possibilities. I’ll have a while yet before it’s useable, so I’ll let my imagination go for awhile.

Chris and Brad – Milling is really a blast and a great thing to do as an alternate to work!

Thanks everyone for your comments!

-- Dorje (pronounced "door-jay"), Seattle, WA

View Sawdust2's profile

Sawdust2

1467 posts in 2839 days


#15 posted 11-24-2007 02:10 PM

Ahhh. Expending energy and building up a sweat is not work if it is fun!

I always enjoy seeing what other people’s creativity brings. I’m looking forward to seeing a project from this non-work in a year or so.

-- No piece is cut too short. It was meant for a smaller project.

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