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Author Topic: Advice needed for newly purchased land and mill  (Read 2926 times)

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Offline millinvillin

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Re: Advice needed for newly purchased land and mill
« Reply #20 on: April 04, 2018, 05:41:55 PM »
8) Congrats on the ground/timber and new mill. The turbosawmill is optimized for dimensional and beams. Did you buy an extension: what is the longest length you Can saw.  Is it an M8? 10? 12?  I think you will be better if you focus on higher value products rather than pallet lumber. Producing low cost pallet lumber is not much different than selling logs to the big sawmill, IMO. There seems to be a dearth of sources for things like cedar and for beams. If you can advertise for some of these types of products, you will be able to cut higher end products and raise more money with less wood cut. Also, do you have any burls or other things like hardwood on the 80? Slabbing either with a dedicated slabber on the Turbosaw, or an Alaskan mill will be a good way to produce some larger live edge pieces, which right now seem to be all the rage. You can also see to selling your chips as horse bedding ( except not black walnut), though not a lot of money, you will have to come up with a plan to deal with waste. Firewood also is an outlet for some extra $$ from the small pieces and slab material. Sounds like you will be enjoying a lot of awesome cutting when you get the mill tuned up and chips flying. I recently upgraded my M6 to an M8 with the turbokerf blade. Could not be happier!  Amazing piece of engineering!!  Happy, safe sawing!!
I just watched your video. I ordered the 10" auto. No extension at this time so I can cut 20'. I can cut a bit longer and up to 24" wide with my bandsaw. I look forward to cutting some big beams, slabs etc. There is a pretty good stand of Cedar as well. My issue is finding markets for these products that can produce some revenue without having to wait for drying/kiln. I need to generate a minimum of $60,000 gross sales this year. I have a lot of work ahead of me just opening old skid roads and clearing 60 years of brush and fallen trees. I'm looking forward to an adventurous first year milling for profit. It would be easier if it wasn't a 2 hour drive from my house. Do you have the slabber for your mill?

Offline mad murdock

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Re: Advice needed for newly purchased land and mill
« Reply #21 on: April 04, 2018, 11:57:25 PM »
I have the Alaskan slabber cradle as I already had a granberg Alaskan. I havent used it yet, been too busy with other orders. I have it set up as a 36 Alaskan, but Can extend it if I want up to about 60. Dona good timber stand cruise ofnwhat you have on the land for tree stock, and then dont cut anything until you have an order and ask for 50% down before you start milling. At least if someone backs or the logs are paid for as you are committing your trees as you Cutberto them obviously. To cut and mill on speculation in hopes of selling something, IMO, is a losing proposition. You will do well to sear h out high end markets where you are (regionally) and gonafter that as you will make more with less work. Cabin kits(timber frame) barn kits(again timber frame) and even outdoor furniture kits, or fencing kits are some ideas I am working with.  I have a little more wood species at my disposal like redwood and other things, but you have a good selection of species there to choose from as well. Dont overlook things like black locust and oak for horse farms. Posts and trailer/truck decking of hardwoods are sought after products and not real easily obtained here in the West. Other ideas would be even boat building woods. Lots of options if you look beyond the pallet type markets. 
JD AMT 626, Turbosawmill M6 Warrior Ultra liteweight, Granberg Alaskan III, lots of saws-gas powered and human powered :D

Offline TKehl

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Re: Advice needed for newly purchased land and mill
« Reply #22 on: April 05, 2018, 08:31:19 AM »
It would be easier if it wasn't a 2 hour drive from my house.


This is a potential concern.  Where will you sell lumber/products from.  The mill site?  Or will you transport them to your residence?  Do you have room where you live for storage?

I'm assuming you will be milling on weekends?  
Lucas 6-13+slabber, Mr. Sawmill bandmill, orange chainsaws, JD SSL, Case Backhoe, farm tractors, trailers, and 150ish acres of trees.  Fledgling woodshop with CNC router, laser engraver, Woodmaster 712, and a Berlin 108 moulder (project).  Oh, and a lovely (patient) wife and four offbearers.

Offline millinvillin

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Re: Advice needed for newly purchased land and mill
« Reply #23 on: April 05, 2018, 09:44:11 AM »
I live on 100 acres 15 min outside SPOKANE Wa. I have plenty of space to store wood. My family spends most weekend at the lake property already. Im planning to take 3-4 day weekends most weeks this summer and be milling. My idea is to log and mill up there during the summer and do my drying, millwork, etc here at my home during the other seasons.

Offline TKehl

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Re: Advice needed for newly purchased land and mill
« Reply #24 on: April 05, 2018, 10:19:20 AM »
That's reasonable.

If you don't have one already, it would be good to look at forklifts.  Stack & stick on trailer as you mill and then unload at home with forklift.  Significant reduction in handling.  

A front end loader on a tractor or skid steer is nice, but most won't have the capacity of most forklifts.  Backhoes and skip loaders are better, but still not a forklift.
Lucas 6-13+slabber, Mr. Sawmill bandmill, orange chainsaws, JD SSL, Case Backhoe, farm tractors, trailers, and 150ish acres of trees.  Fledgling woodshop with CNC router, laser engraver, Woodmaster 712, and a Berlin 108 moulder (project).  Oh, and a lovely (patient) wife and four offbearers.

Offline millinvillin

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Re: Advice needed for newly purchased land and mill
« Reply #25 on: April 05, 2018, 10:48:40 AM »
I have forks for the skidsteer but it is pretty limited in capacity. Id like to buy a telehandler in the next year or two. I have a list a mile long of things I want/need to buy. Its just a matter of prioritizing. Having a justification to buy tools and equipment is a big part of this new business. I dont need the income for living expenses. I can put most of the profit into expanding equipment and buildings.

Offline TKehl

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Re: Advice needed for newly purchased land and mill
« Reply #26 on: April 05, 2018, 11:01:19 AM »
FWIW, I picked this up for a grand.  



Needs about $500 worth of work, but much less $ than a telehandler.  I'd like one of them too. Not sure if would ever be able to justify one for what I do, but I would sure stack hay real high.  LOL
Lucas 6-13+slabber, Mr. Sawmill bandmill, orange chainsaws, JD SSL, Case Backhoe, farm tractors, trailers, and 150ish acres of trees.  Fledgling woodshop with CNC router, laser engraver, Woodmaster 712, and a Berlin 108 moulder (project).  Oh, and a lovely (patient) wife and four offbearers.

Offline millinvillin

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Re: Advice needed for newly purchased land and mill
« Reply #27 on: April 05, 2018, 11:03:02 AM »
Where is it located?

Offline TKehl

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Re: Advice needed for newly purchased land and mill
« Reply #28 on: April 05, 2018, 11:27:39 AM »
My front yard.   ;D

Just saying, deals are out there.  Don't let perfect be the enemy of the good.   ;)
Lucas 6-13+slabber, Mr. Sawmill bandmill, orange chainsaws, JD SSL, Case Backhoe, farm tractors, trailers, and 150ish acres of trees.  Fledgling woodshop with CNC router, laser engraver, Woodmaster 712, and a Berlin 108 moulder (project).  Oh, and a lovely (patient) wife and four offbearers.

Offline millinvillin

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Re: Advice needed for newly purchased land and mill
« Reply #29 on: April 05, 2018, 12:00:02 PM »
Sorry, read that as one was available, not that you bought it for that. Im stealing that saying from you!

Offline TKehl

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Re: Advice needed for newly purchased land and mill
« Reply #30 on: April 05, 2018, 12:24:34 PM »
Can't steal what's freely given.    :D
Lucas 6-13+slabber, Mr. Sawmill bandmill, orange chainsaws, JD SSL, Case Backhoe, farm tractors, trailers, and 150ish acres of trees.  Fledgling woodshop with CNC router, laser engraver, Woodmaster 712, and a Berlin 108 moulder (project).  Oh, and a lovely (patient) wife and four offbearers.

Offline ST Ranch

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Re: Advice needed for newly purchased land and mill
« Reply #31 on: April 06, 2018, 03:59:40 PM »

MillinVillin

From the info you have given and above responses, in general, it appears that you have a great opportunity and a long-term vision [a sustainable forest management program of selective harvesting to provide feedstock (logs) for an offsite woodworking operation] but may be constrained in the short term from a money crunch.  

First off, if your land is located in the Colville Forest Ione area of WA , has medium to good growing capacity and mostly gentle to moderate terrain, then the species mix of trees and proximity to sawmills, recreationalists, and a fairly affluent marketplace for rustic buildings and homes certainly gives you many options both short and long term.  Said forests usually have a mix of higher value tree species and in some cases the correct forest stand structure to allow for selective harvesting.

Some random ideas and questions: 

 

[ I apologize in advance if you get the impression I am promoting an up-front logging operation to get some cash flow BUT at the present time, the price of dimension softwood lumber is an all time high, as is the price being paid for saw-logs, so capitalizing on this in the short term might be considered]

 

Log a portion of land now for cash flow. Maximize profit by sorting logs for grade and product round and straight stemmed house logs [D-fir, Larch and Spruce], Oversize D-fir and Larch for timber-frame, straight and defect free Lodgepole pine [and D-fir] for Utility poles [Cedar may also be considered, but given its value as lumber, paneling, etc, you may want to keep for yourself].

 

Where and how you log now will be site specific [clear-cut vs selective], depend on species mix, terrain, who is logging [you or a contractor], or are you building new roads, landing sites for future, and other factors.

 

Pure lodgepole pine stands are usually clear-cut, so logging any site sites now for cash flow will not really change the silviculture system, just the timing. Also you may find good markets for the undersize lodgepole pine [posts and rails] in western Idaho.

 

Do you have and inventory of the forest - a timber cruise or Recce cruise ?

 

Have you considered other uses, recreational trails or summer camping sites?  Is the property on or near a lake possible long term recreation lease sites for camp trailers?

 

Have you considered hiring an INDEPENDENT local person with a broad viewpoint and experience in advising you on your site specific options [local private forest land owners assoc. or forest consultants or ??   Someone not aligned to the local sawmills and can think out of the box.

 

Do you have any logging experience and equipment to allow you to log some of the land now for a mix of traditional saw-logs for the local mills and a supply of logs for your mill? 

 

Just my 2 cents [or a bit more] worth.  Look forward to your reply and answers to said ideas.

 

 Tom

 
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Offline millinvillin

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Re: Advice needed for newly purchased land and mill
« Reply #32 on: April 11, 2018, 05:48:47 PM »

MillinVillin

From the info you have given and above responses, in general, it appears that you have a great opportunity and a long-term vision [a sustainable forest management program of selective harvesting to provide feedstock (logs) for an offsite woodworking operation] but may be constrained in the short term from a money crunch. I have 1 year to pay off the $45k balance on the land purchase. I don't need cash for income, just some additional equipment and the balloon payment due for the purchase. Fortunately, I spoke with the seller this week and they agreed to a 1 year extension if needed.  

First off, if your land is located in the Colville Forest Ione area of WA , has medium to good growing capacity and mostly gentle to moderate terrain, then the species mix of trees and proximity to sawmills, recreationalists, and a fairly affluent marketplace for rustic buildings and homes certainly gives you many options both short and long term.  Said forests usually have a mix of higher value tree species and in some cases the correct forest stand structure to allow for selective harvesting. The property is on highway 20 between Colville and Ione

Some random ideas and questions:

 

[ I apologize in advance if you get the impression I am promoting an up-front logging operation to get some cash flow BUT at the present time, the price of dimension softwood lumber is an all time high, as is the price being paid for saw-logs, so capitalizing on this in the short term might be considered]

 

Log a portion of land now for cash flow. Maximize profit by sorting logs for grade and product round and straight stemmed house logs [D-fir, Larch and Spruce], Oversize D-fir and Larch for timber-frame, straight and defect free Lodgepole pine [and D-fir] for Utility poles [Cedar may also be considered, but given its value as lumber, paneling, etc, you may want to keep for yourself]. I want to keep the D-fir and Larch to produce and sell flooring. There is some cedar but I'd prefer to harvest very little just for personal projects. If I pay a contractor to do the logging the minimal amount I will get out of the sale just isn't worth it to me. I may decide to cut a few truck loads of Fir and Spruce myself to help jump start my cash flow.  

 

Where and how you log now will be site specific [clear-cut vs selective], depend on species mix, terrain, who is logging [you or a contractor], or are you building new roads, landing sites for future, and other factors. No new roads need built. I will be clearing a few small sites for landing and cabin sites.

 

Pure lodgepole pine stands are usually clear-cut, so logging any site sites now for cash flow will not really change the silviculture system, just the timing. Also you may find good markets for the undersize lodgepole pine [posts and rails] in western Idaho. There is a large stand of lodgepole on one section. I'd love any input you have for marketing the small poles!

 

Do you have and inventory of the forest - a timber cruise or Recce cruise ? No

 

Have you considered other uses, recreational trails or summer camping sites?  Is the property on or near a lake possible long term recreation lease sites for camp trailers? It is lakefront. Between the original 80 and this purchase we own all but a small state access on the highway that is walk in only (no boats, camping, etc) We have a cabin, shop, fishing dock, etc on the original 80acres we own. My wife and I have talked about having a few small rental cabins for VRBO in the future.

 

Have you considered hiring an INDEPENDENT local person with a broad viewpoint and experience in advising you on your site specific options [local private forest land owners assoc. or forest consultants or ??   Someone not aligned to the local sawmills and can think out of the box. I have started making calls today looking for this exact thing

 

Do you have any logging experience and equipment to allow you to log some of the land now for a mix of traditional saw-logs for the local mills and a supply of logs for your mill? I set choker behind a cat and worked on the landing  for a summer when I was 18. We have a skidsteer with steel over tire tracks and a grapple. I am building a log arch to use with my Polaris Ranger and a skidding arch right now. Trying to do decide on the most valuable piece of equipment to add first (forwarding trailer with loader, large tractor with winch, mini excavator, skidder). Having an excuse to buy equipment is a big motivating factor in all this. I love running equipment and crawling around in the woods with a saw.

 

Just my 2 cents [or a bit more] worth.  Look forward to your reply and answers to said ideas. I really appreciate you taking the time to respond with your input!

 

Tom

 

Offline ST Ranch

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Re: Advice needed for newly purchased land and mill
« Reply #33 on: May 30, 2018, 11:53:57 AM »
Millinvillin - how is it going?

Just thought I would share with you[remind] about next months field farm day in Valleyford.  Lots of good topics that you might enjoy.

I would attend if I was not already busy that weekend.

Forest and Range Owners Field on Saturday, June 23, 2018 at Valleyford, WA.

Idaho forest land owners and WSU putting on a workshop/field day neat your area and I would think you should be able to make some good contacts.

There is a brochure/agenda on their web site with direction to the site

Tom
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Offline mike_belben

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Re: Advice needed for newly purchased land and mill
« Reply #34 on: May 30, 2018, 12:50:59 PM »
What i get from this thread is:

-You are tired of a monotonous office life and want adventure.  

-You have a financial willingness and ability to embark on this adventure.

-You have access to affluent customers who have financial willingness and ability to buy things they are fond of.

-You have a history with this land and are wanting your adventure to improve upon that history, not just deplete it for quick cash. however making the land generate enough revenue to cover its own cost is also a priority

Anything i am missing?  



My first thought is that any area you cut will not produce another good timber check in your lifetime.  Thats just the nature of trees. We live in dog years relative to them.   So when you are cutting an area.. Think of converting it.  Out of timber and into something else that can generate income on shorter rotations.  

Here a farm is a business that starts with a forest.  The clearcut offsets the purchase price.  Then the cow lease covers the taxes while the stumps rot, then decades later when its clear and easily hayed or planted, the hay or crop lease brings in money to the landlord.  And finally when the neighborhood is ripe its sold off for pretty rural housing for richies.   Im not saying do this, i dont particularly like the practice.. but just illustrating the conversions that bring periodic payments and ripen the land toward increased value without huge input costs for its owner.  Its smart.  


So what if you pick a spot thats ideal for a pretty horse pasture.  Think of sunrise, sunset, water scenery, and wedding photography.  Its a long term picture, you need a vision for making a replica of long gone americana, people are in love with spending a few hours in it and will part with their money if you get it right.  

So you clearcut this whole patch and market logs asap while timber is high, get that balloon covered.    Then you start cutting in yours trail with horses in mind, think views and water edge. Caves, overlooks, sunsets. Youre cutting logs second, cutting a road to sell an adventure experience that a stranger will remember forever.

 Sell prime logs to the mills until you have a great buyer that makes it profitable enough to put the time into refining the raw log into higher value end product.. Dont cut primes just to make the same margin as 2common.  mill low grade for putting up your own structures as models of what you do. A cabin to stay in at sawyer camp, your outhouse.  Then fencing, a horse stable, maybe a mortice and tenon gazebo that goes right between the sunset and apple orchard you put in for the future.   I am describing a very successful farm turned wedding venue in massachusetts that ive been to for 3 weddings.  

You set the land up to generate other revenue streams a decade into the future so that when you finally burn out of sawing orders, its okay.  You just slide the sawing back to you hobby life and keep it a joy rather than a drudgery.  

In my mind i see horse stable/pasture leasing, u pick orchards, wedding/photography day rental venue and conference retreat.  Your proximity to a mega city is an advantage.  Google barn wedding images tab.   Its a thing that can bring good money.  Rich people who try to be country for facebook.

if you build it they will come.  I live where theres nothing but woods and cows and poor pill heads in singlewide shacks.  But hidden back down some of these long drives that might go to fields or might go to mansions you arent sposta know about.  Theres a girls summer camp/lake/stable i have hauled tornado blowdowns off of up the road.  $4000 a week per girl and it fills to capacity.  They are picked up at airport from around the world.  Few miles the other direction is an exclusive exotic animal hunting camp.  $1500-6000 per head for a weekend hunt, depending on which breee of fish in a barrel you select.  Again, the rich fly in.  


Design for exclusivity.  People with too much money love paying too much for that.  If you hit it even half right, you can keep most of your land woods and have money rolling in any way.  Think of what the execs you know in the insurance world splurge on.  

And hey, if it doesnt take off or you dont want to deal with people there, well youve got all these nice fences and structures built with beautiful views for the brochure on your rustic cabin, barn, fencing, stable and outhouse kits.  Make it your own family retreat or retirement home.  And if thats not possible, well itll be worth a fortune when sold off to some bitcoin billionaire who wants to get away from it all for the weekend. 





Revelation 3:20


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