making lumber

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Project by MattNC posted 08-22-2013 01:17 PM 2854 views 2 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is technically a wood project, just not made into anything yet! Here are some poplar logs being sawed on the sawmill I bought and rebuilt on my blog page. The biggest poplar log was 24” in diameter and I got 7 2”x15” boards out of it and some assorted 2”x9”s and smaller pieces (the boards shown are 1” stock from the smaller log). Its air drying now waiting for me to build a solar kiln.

11 comments so far

View Brad_Nailor's profile


2539 posts in 3423 days

#1 posted 08-22-2013 01:52 PM

Cool stuff! I would love to be able to saw my own lumber..those portable saw mills look really neat.


View Don W's profile

Don W

17971 posts in 2034 days

#2 posted 08-22-2013 01:57 PM

That looks like the same sawmill I have. Very cool.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. -

View Luis M's profile

Luis M

41 posts in 2097 days

#3 posted 08-22-2013 02:26 PM

How are you drying the wood? Air dry or do you also have a kiln? I wish I had the ability to resaw my own lumber.

-- Luis

View pintodeluxe's profile


4859 posts in 2279 days

#4 posted 08-22-2013 03:47 PM

Is that a Bx tractor? And did you load the log with it, or just carry lumber?
I have been curious how much weight a three-point fork could lift.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View MattNC's profile


43 posts in 1217 days

#5 posted 08-22-2013 05:46 PM

Don, yes we have the same mill and also both have a Kubota! For the large log I had to trim the sides with a chainsaw but the mill works great and is easy to move and operate.

As for the question about the tractor yes it is a BX1830. I checked the forestryforum’s log weight calculator for tulip poplar and the log was approx 22” in the center and was originally 12’ long and it couldn’t lift it (1500lb), when I cut it to 9’ it picked it right up (1100lb). Not too bad for a little tractor. Those 3pt carryalls are really nice and really cheap at around $100 new. I use the carryall to load and move logs around near the mill. To move them out of the woods I wrap a chain and use the 3pt to lift one end and then drag it out.

I have an entire white oak and maple trees waiting to mill just from behind my house that came down in the woods during a storm. They are each around 24” at the stump and the oak was 45’ to the first branch, and maple about 35’ to the first branch.

View Don W's profile

Don W

17971 posts in 2034 days

#6 posted 08-22-2013 05:59 PM

I had to quater this one.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. -

View MattNC's profile


43 posts in 1217 days

#7 posted 08-22-2013 06:32 PM

Don, your post was awesome. I have turned down a few huge ones out of fear of the hours of splitting but perhaps one day I’ll be crazy enough to try it.

View Don W's profile

Don W

17971 posts in 2034 days

#8 posted 08-22-2013 06:39 PM

That’s how you get quarter sawn! You never turn that down !

-- Master hand plane hoarder. -

View Surfside's profile


3389 posts in 1640 days

#9 posted 08-22-2013 07:28 PM

I like poplar wood. I really wanted to resaw my own logs . That’s a really nice saw.

-- "someone has to be wounded for others to be saved, someone has to sacrifice for others to feel happiness, someone has to die so others could live"

View NormG's profile


5507 posts in 2470 days

#10 posted 08-23-2013 01:14 AM

You are very fortunate to have this ability, great job

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View MattNC's profile


43 posts in 1217 days

#11 posted 08-23-2013 12:43 PM

thanks all for the comments. As for drying I cut up stickers and I leveled an area with gravel, built a base out of oak beams on cement blocks, and then stacked the lumber with the stickers every 2’. I then covered the stack with sheets of ondura roofing. Two things I learned for sawing in the summer were first you must sticker them ASAP to prevent mold, and second to spray the green lumber with a borate solution to prevent borers from getting to it before its dry enough. A 5% solution of boric acid (home depot roach powder) and 5% borax (walmart) worked great as a spray and kept the bugs off. You can also buy this mixture pre-made as solubor or timbor from ag supply stores.

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