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Author Topic: Options, Options, Options……Money  (Read 598 times)

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Offline Doesmarlowknow

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Options, Options, Options……Money
« on: February 02, 2019, 11:31:39 AM »

Hello all,

I have been lurking for a while. 

 
A bit about me: I am located in downtown Toronto, Canada. My go to tool store is Atlas Tool and Machinery. I mill in my backyard. I have a kid. My neighbours are very used to my antics and hobbies. All this is to say I need to start a log and finish as quickly as possible. I have access to free logs.
 
Currently I use an MS 362 with a 24” bar and associated 24” Granberg mill. My logs are bigger than 18-20” so to mill takes a lot of set up time. I fully understand the 362 is not for milling; it was just a saw to see if I like milling.

Frustrated, I went to Atlas and requested a quote for the MS 880 and the rep who mills himself suggested an aux oiler, a 56” double bar, 48” basic mill and a helper handle all totaling $3700 Cdn.

 
However, I have been going through the forums here and everyone is all about the Stihl 090. Since I am spending the money I want to get the most bang for my buck.

I have located two reputable saw refurb guys stateside: Instagram @westcoastsaw and instagram @dominantsaw. I have not been able to find a reputable refurb guy in the GTA (Greater Toronto Area not Grand Theft Auto). So if anything goes wrong with the saw I would have to send it all the way to the States.

 
I am mechanically inclined myself, however this hobby has to be “plug and play” (I use that phrase very loosely) given my time constraints.

By all accounts the MS 880 is a decent saw but those who have been milling and working saws seem to think it does not have balls. 

If you guys support the MS 880, the question is to reduce cost can I get a 56” bar that’s not a double (500 cdn) which also eliminates the helper handle (109 cdn) and since I have a Granberg mill can I buy the expansion kit? 


Thanks for reading, looking forward to guidance from experienced hands.
 
Doesmarlowknow

Offline sawguy21

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Re: Options, Options, Options……Money
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2019, 12:20:33 PM »
Welcome!!! I would like to know how you get away with milling in downtown Toronto, you must have very tolerant neighbours. IMHO, you will be better off with the MS880. Any Stihl dealer could service it unless it's modified which I don't recommend for your purposes and have parts overnight. The 090 was last sold in Canada almost twenty years ago, primarily on the west coast. You are not going to find a local dealer with knowledge or parts.
A 56" bar is going to be expensive. Cannon in British Columbia is worth a look, anything coming out of the U.S. will get hit with duty and exchange. Good luck.
old age and treachery will always overcome youth and enthusiasm

Offline wild262

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Re: Options, Options, Options……Money
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2019, 12:27:29 PM »
              Welcome to the forum.   Your fixing to do something I would have liked to do when I was a young lad.  I have worked with "millers" and have helped out in the process, but have not actually done any.  I know of a fellow Canadian that has.  Maybe Holmen will chime in and offer some help.  I know he used to mill with a 066/660. :)

Offline HolmenTree

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Re: Options, Options, Options……Money
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2019, 04:58:17 PM »
Currently I use an MS 362 with a 24” bar and associated 24” Granberg mill. My logs are bigger than 18-20” so to mill takes a lot of set up time. I fully understand the 362 is not for milling; it was just a saw to see if I like milling
Welcome,
hard to believe you're chainsaw milling in the middle of a city with 3 million people  :D
I recommend a pre EPA Stihl 066 (1991-1997) or a MS661 or a Husqvarna 395XP.
If you mill your slabs off your logs correctly you can mill much larger diameter logs then you think you can with your 24" Alaskan mill. Like I do in my pictures below.
First slab on top of log I level my 20 foot  slabbing rails on both ends with a 2 foot carpenters  level.
I nail the end brackets to both ends of log with 3-1/2" double headed nails.
I have screw down leveller carriage bolts with lock nuts to keep rails straight.
When I get that first slab off I roll the log over a 1/4 turn then nail the rails back on top. This time I use a 2 foot carpenters square which I butt up against the underside of the end bracket and the other side of the square on the flat side of the log. Now my rails will allow me to mill 90° to the first slabbed side of the log.
I did this job on a day with -40 below windchill.
Pictures tell a 1000 words. :)


 

 

Making a living with a saw since age 16.

Offline HolmenTree

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Re: Options, Options, Options……Money
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2019, 05:39:18 PM »
That was 5 years ago when I last milled lumber.
I have since sold the 395XP last year and recently OEM rebuilt my 1992 and '97 Stihl 066 saws....welcome back old friends :)


 
Making a living with a saw since age 16.

Offline Hilltop366

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Re: Options, Options, Options……Money
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2019, 05:43:23 PM »
Unless you need a csm for large slabs for that kind of money you are well on your way to getting a manual band sawmill, put an electric motor on it and your neighbours will really like it.

Welcome to the Forestry Forum!

Offline esteadle

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Re: Options, Options, Options……Money
« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2019, 06:42:23 PM »
I had a new MS 880 with a 36" bar for a couple years. It's a heavy saw and I didn't like to get it out. I bought it new and used it for about a year before I parted ways with it. Cost north of 2000 to buy new here in US. It's a "lugger" saw; it doesn't rev all that high, but it's got lots of torque. The .404 width chain they sell it with needs that kind of torque though. I didn't have any problem with the power of this saw. It cut like a monster. 

I bought a new MS 661 late this year, again with a 36" bar, and I think I like it better. It's just now getting broken in and it has a lot of power, and cuts well, and weighs a lot less than the 880 did. Like 5 lbs less. This saw seems to do everything my 880 was doing, just less effort on my part. It runs a .375 chain which is a little easier to pull through the wood, and seems to be a bit cheaper to source too. The great thing about the 661 is the price compared to the 880. I think I paid around 1300 us for that saw brand new. The dealer threw in a lot of extras too (scabbard extension for 36", a gallon of bar oil, and 2 cans of pre-mix and a couple of files). 

If you plan to cut flitches wider than 30", I'd get the aux oiler and also the helper handle. The oiler will save your bar life (and those aren't cheap). The helper handle will save your lower back muscles. 

Best of luck to you...
Timber Harvester 30HT26 (setworks, hydraulic) Stihl 880 (36" bar).

Offline samandothers

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Re: Options, Options, Options……Money
« Reply #7 on: February 02, 2019, 06:56:44 PM »
As Hilltop indicated check out some of the band saw mills from sponsors on the left side.  You are getting close to that type of money.  Even if gas engine it might sound like lawn equipment! ;D 

Offline Doesmarlowknow

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Re: Options, Options, Options……Money
« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2019, 12:45:54 PM »
Thanks for all the tips and advice. I am now looking into saw mills. I will post some photos of me milling in downtown Toronto for the none believers!

Offline Al_Smith

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Re: Options, Options, Options……Money
« Reply #9 on: February 05, 2019, 07:19:49 PM »
 :D I can't help laughing at the idea of a chain saw roaring away around 7-8 AM on a Saturday morning in a highly populated area .I'll bet the neighbors are really fond of that  8)


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