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Need advice on making my own mini-sawmill

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Forum topic by Pete Santos posted 2576 days ago 13904 views 1 time favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Pete Santos

170 posts in 2610 days


2576 days ago

I recently bought some property and cleared an area so now I have some cedar and doug fir logs that I want to mill for my own personal use. I don’t have thousands to spend on a portable sawmill and I don’t want to use a chainsaw type saw mill. I want to make my own bandsaw mini-sawmill.

Any advice? I’ve seen a few home-made sawmills on the web and I would like to hear from some people who have actually built their own.

Thanks

-- Greatness is not found in possessions, power, position, or prestige. It is discovered in goodness, humility, service, and love.


9 replies so far

View oscorner's profile

oscorner

4564 posts in 2912 days


#1 posted 2576 days ago

GOOD LUCK! Building one will be quite a challenge and a time consuming project, from what I’ve seen on the net. Tony has had great success with his chainsaw mill, why are you wanting a bandsaw mill? I mean if you are to build your own, it seems a chainsaw mill would be easier.

-- Jesus is Lord!

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Pete Santos

170 posts in 2610 days


#2 posted 2576 days ago

Yeah, the chainsaw route would be significantly easier but a bandsaw would make less waste and produce a cleaner cut.

I have a pretty good idea how I want to proceed but I want to hear from people who have “valuable lessons” that they learned during their process. Things that most people wouldn’t think about beforehand. We all learn from our mistakes, I know I have. So learning from other peoples’ mistakes/experiences is best when you don’t have a ton of cash to make your own mistakes!!!

-- Greatness is not found in possessions, power, position, or prestige. It is discovered in goodness, humility, service, and love.

View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 2901 days


#3 posted 2576 days ago

I just looked this up. You should read this, & maybe you’ll change your mind.

-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN. http://www.woodcarvingillustrated.com/gallery/member.php?uid=3627&protype=1

View Bob #2's profile

Bob #2

3808 posts in 2623 days


#4 posted 2569 days ago

Dicik:
Those comments are a fair assesment of the reality of building a complex machine in your back yard.
There’s literally thousands of hours of experience and 25 years of manufacturing behind Woodmizer for instance.

I’m not sure that the savings of home built are a set off for all that.

p.s. the resale value of home built is next to nill.

Bob

-- A mind, like a home, is furnished by its owner

View Takeshi's profile

Takeshi

9 posts in 2575 days


#5 posted 2569 days ago

Hi I enjoy hobby sawmill to use waste log.
I enjoy making small projects with those lumber.

http://www.nt.sakura.ne.jp/~garakuta/wood/english/esawmil/sawmill.html

and I think chainsaw is basic tool for hobby sawmill

-- impatient makes inpatient, work safe

View Bob #2's profile

Bob #2

3808 posts in 2623 days


#6 posted 2569 days ago

Hi Takeshi:
That’s a fine set up you have for making boards from logs.
I quite like the use of the window to slide the logs to your bandsaw.
Lovely country you live in and you are very lucky to be able to find good wood to work with.
The biggest concern over here with using a chainsaw mill is that you loose quite abit of valuable timber with the kerf of the chainsaw.
With a decent bandsaw the kerf is very small .

Please post some of your projects.

Regards
Bob

-- A mind, like a home, is furnished by its owner

View Wooder's profile

Wooder

163 posts in 2788 days


#7 posted 2553 days ago

I own a Turner Mill. It is as basic bandmil. I wouldn’t dream of taking the time to try and build it. Considering what it would take to build one, there are some very reasonable ones on the market like this…
http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_6970_200320459_200320459

For the backyard hobbist seems quite reasonable. Unless you already had everything to build one, seems it would cost the same in the end.

2 cents worth.

Jimmy

-- Jimmy

View chuckyb's profile

chuckyb

5 posts in 1007 days


#8 posted 1007 days ago

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wzrxHjCRpJE Here is the answer and it has been tested to work and is the cheapest with the best capacity for width and length. You can benefit from my experience in searching for the holy grail of hand made sawmills. Go to the link^^^

View Loren's profile

Loren

7259 posts in 2249 days


#9 posted 1007 days ago

There’s a guy wrote a book on designing and building band saws:

http://www.falbergsawz.com/book/book.html

The bandsaw is a critical part of it – you could take an existing bandsaw
and modify it to have a larger capacity or you could build a saw from
parts.

The other part of a bandmill is your mechanism for moving the saw through
the wood.

I haven’t built one but I’ve studied the designs some and my conclusion
is that if you are keen on welding and building this sort of thing, go
for it and have fun, but if you want to just cut your lumber, buy
a used brand-name mill and resell when you are done. Home-built
mills don’t have very good resell value.

Personally I find the swingblade mills the most appealing, but there’s not
much out in the way of designs meant for self-building.

No matter what you do, you’ll be getting into an area of woodworking
that certainly has a learning curve – with the heat and all that you’ll
be dealing with, sawmilling has more of a metallurgical component than
shop woodworking with dry lumber.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

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