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Author Topic: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end  (Read 2511 times)

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Offline bhraymer

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Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« on: October 08, 2018, 08:22:13 PM »
I've properly aligned all bunk/bed heights on my Woodmizer LT35HD several times ensuring the blade is the exact same height from each bunk at the far left, middle, and far right of the blade. 99% of my milling is live-edge slabs and the mill cuts just fine on all but 1 slab from every log. Starting on a log, say I cut 4 slabs and then rotate 180deg and finish slabbing the log. The very last slab (on the bottom) that is against the bunks will always be 1/4-3/4" thicker on the front end opposed to the back end. And when I slab longer logs that touch all 4 main bunks, after flipping the log 180deg to finish it there's always 2 bunks that the cant sits flush against and 2 that it sits 1/4" above.

This happens with every log, green/dry/hard/soft. Woodmizer tells me it's potentially stress in the log which I don't buy since it's every single log I slab and almost always the exact same results. They also said make sure your outriggers are secure (which they are). This has been happening since I got the mill brand new and I currently have 110hrs on it. Thought I'd seek some experienced wisdom on here before contacting Woodmizer again...any guidance is very much appreciated.

Offline Magicman

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2018, 08:55:52 PM »
Actually you answered your own question.  You verified that the blade was the exact same distance from each bed rail (bunk) left and right as well as end to end.  The bed height does not change nor does the blade height change as you are sawing.

That leaves; the sawmill is not properly supported by the outriggers, the log is not properly supported by all of the bed rails all of the way from end to end of the log all of the time, or log stress is dealing you misery as slabs are removed.  There is no reason to doubt what Wood-Mizer told you about stress.
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Offline SawyerTed

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2018, 09:46:59 PM »
Have you set the mill up level on a hard surface ensuring all outriggers are carrying a portion of the mill weight?  If not then you should and check alignment of the blade to the bunks. 

My mill has similar hours and has not required adjustments to the bunks. The majority of errors has been related to outrigger deployment or operator error (toe boards deployed improperly.
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Offline Southside logger

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2018, 10:57:46 PM »
I have to look it up in my book to get the exact answer but your band is not supposed to be the same height on the drive side as on the idle side, IIRC it is supposed to be 1/16" higher on the idle side as that side of the head is drawn down into the lumber when sawing.  

As SawyerTed and Magicman said improper weight distribution on your out riggers will cause exactly what you describe.  If you are sawing on soft ground it's very likely that the surface has compacted and your outriggers are not supporting the same weight as they were when you first set them down.  

It can be frustrating to have these things happening with a new mill, but the 35 is a work horse and once you really understand it will work wonders for you.  

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #4 on: October 09, 2018, 12:28:12 AM »
I carry a dozen or so 3/4x6x6 pieces of plywood to try to even out the outriggers.  my mill has some preload and I have to put a little extra pressure on both ends to take the arch out. With the head all the way to the front/hitch end, I look down the top rail to see if its flat or arched. 
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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #5 on: October 09, 2018, 01:58:18 AM »
Exactly
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Offline ladylake

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #6 on: October 09, 2018, 05:30:24 AM »
 
 The easy way to check if its stress or mill setup is to put a long 1" board on the mill and take about 1/4" off the top edge, then turn it over and take another 1/4" off.  It will have no stress and should measure the same from one end to the other, if its the same your mill is set up fine and your just having trouble with stressed logs. Steve
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Offline Poweredward

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #7 on: October 09, 2018, 05:44:29 AM »
I had the same issue on a new LT35HD as well, turned out I was putting to much weight on the 4 outside outriggers.  I now just drop them and shim them, my woodmizer rep told me they are just so the mill doesnt tip over they should not hold any weight.   This solved that problem for me .
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Offline Peter Drouin

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #8 on: October 09, 2018, 06:16:40 AM »
Your cutting to close to the pith before you turn the thing.

Offline millwright

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #9 on: October 09, 2018, 08:14:04 AM »
I had the same problem with my lt35, it was hard to get frame level when I had a large log on.  I replaced the jacks with faos. It not only solved the problem, but it made a huge improvement on setup time.

Offline Stephen1

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #10 on: October 09, 2018, 08:23:52 AM »
Your cutting to close to the pith before you turn the thing.
Try turning when you get to the height of the back stops. 
I only lift each end of the mill to a height where the inboard legs click into place.
Make sure the ends of the log/slabs are over a support. 
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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #11 on: October 09, 2018, 08:31:41 AM »
Yes Southside logger, 1/16" higher on the idle side but I assumed that surely he had gotten that from his Operator's Manual detailing adjustments and alignments.  "End to end" is the OP's problem and it is a "setup" problem, not a sawmill problem.

As a note, there is no indication that this was done but: no one should ever, ever, chase problems by adjusting the bed rail heights.
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Offline Deere80

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #12 on: October 09, 2018, 11:58:45 AM »
I also went thru this with my 35 hydraulic when I got it, and it came down to that I did not have enough pressure on the two end outriggers.  I thought I had a lot on them but had to dang near have the tires off the ground.
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Offline SawyerTed

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #13 on: October 09, 2018, 02:21:42 PM »
bhraymer, don't be discouraged, you can see many of us will admit we have had the same problem.  I use a variety of blocking under my outriggers so I can get proper weight on them without settling.  Some 3/4 plywood, some 4/4 and 8/8 oak boards and some 4x6 all go with me on mobile jobs.  I have had to reset the mill after a large log gets loaded.

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Offline Deere80

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #14 on: October 09, 2018, 02:37:21 PM »
Is it a bad thing if the tires are not in contact with the ground? 
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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #15 on: October 09, 2018, 02:56:12 PM »
Not specifically with regards to getting the mill bed straight for purposes of sawing lumber the same thickness at each end that's being discussed here. Idea is to transfer most of the weight to the jack supports which are firm whereas the springs are not. Tires off the ground would not hinder setting the mill up straight.  But if the tires are off the ground there is another problem, your mill becomes narrower and more tippy which matters under certain conditions such as if rolling a big log from one side to the other or maybe while having the head up high on the masts.  So if a tire is off the ground put  boards under it so that the mill is supported with the extra width that the tires afford,  should rolling a big log on it or having the head way up would want to make it tip.

ps. also review what is said about setting up the mill in the manual.  I think pressure off the springs is mentioned in mine.  Also I know with mine if I don't have the jacks high enough to let some pressure off the springs, the feed motor will rub the tire and cause some problem in cutting 1" boards.
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Offline Lawg Dawg

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #16 on: October 09, 2018, 03:09:38 PM »
They told me when I picked my mill up...you will probably never, ever have to adjust the bed rails...ever!  :D so I don't even look at them!  :D
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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #17 on: October 09, 2018, 03:14:42 PM »
I've done the full alignment procedure on my Lt40 almost yearly for 12 years now.  Checking bed rail adjustments is part of this.  I don't think I've ever adjusted a bed rail more than 1/16 and usually only 1/32 , if at all, in that time. 

That's sawing usually 100-150MBF yearly with a lot of thumping of big logs and big cants on those bed rails. 
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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #18 on: October 09, 2018, 03:20:55 PM »
Make a quick video on iPhone cutting your last straight slab then the one when issues start.  We can critique that much easier and avoid guessing.

Call in a favor if needed from a techy friend if taking the video and posting to youtube is too difficult.
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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #19 on: October 09, 2018, 03:25:53 PM »

 The easy way to check if its stress or mill setup is to put a long 1" board on the mill and take about 1/4" off the top edge, then turn it over and take another 1/4" off.  It will have no stress and should measure the same from one end to the other, if its the same your mill is set up fine and your just having trouble with stressed logs. Steve
Steve do you mean stand the board on edge like you were edging it?
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Offline ladylake

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #20 on: October 09, 2018, 04:22:15 PM »

 Yes like edging a board, taking off only 1/4" or so there will be no stress to deal with.  If the board is wide on the ends you need more pressure on the center jacks , if its wider in the middle more pressure  on the end jacks. Steve
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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #21 on: October 09, 2018, 05:33:07 PM »
Ladylake and i got into a fuss years ago about this very same thing. He is a Timber king fan and i am woodmizer . WDH so graciously explained to me that some mills are more particular about set up than others . They all will work when you get them right. Instead of apologizing to Steve i just send him a pm around February when its 50 degrees here in Ga and - 40 in Mn . 

For having a mill with 12,000 hrs and still working every day my hat's off to Steve.
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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #22 on: October 09, 2018, 06:36:50 PM »

 Yes like edging a board, taking off only 1/4" or so there will be no stress to deal with.  If the board is wide on the ends you need more pressure on the center jacks , if its wider in the middle more pressure  on the end jacks. Steve
Thanks, I agree this is an excellent way to calibrate what is going on in real time during a sawing day, better and easier than making a thin cut on a cant.  Hadn't thought of it before. 
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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #23 on: October 09, 2018, 07:13:17 PM »
Ladylake and i got into a fuss years ago about this very same thing. He is a Timber king fan and i am woodmizer . WDH so graciously explained to me that some mills are more particular about set up than others . They all will work when you get them right. Instead of apologizing to Steve i just send him a pm around February when its 50 degrees here in Ga and - 40 in Mn .

For having a mill with 12,000 hrs and still working every day my hat's off to Steve.



Al  
 Seems like all mills have to be supported right, none are immune from the frame bending a little without the jacks adjusted right.  When I get fussy sawing long beams etc the method I use is fast and easy.

 It's over 14000 hours now and I mill too much but get some loafing in also.
 
 It's  45 degrees now here , I'll take the cold any day plus I only work down to 0,    -5 if I really have too

                                                                             Steve
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Offline Peter Drouin

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #24 on: October 09, 2018, 07:56:36 PM »
I must be lucky, 3 Wood Mizers I have had over the years. I never had a setup problem. I use to put wooden blocks under the legs and cut, I always put most of the weight on the end legs.
I think it is how your sawing. Good luck.   

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #25 on: October 10, 2018, 04:28:14 AM »
  My mills the same, most of the weight on the end jacks. Really easy to adjust with side crank Bulldog jacks.   Steve
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Offline Chuck White

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #26 on: October 10, 2018, 06:55:55 AM »
Is it a bad thing if the tires are not in contact with the ground?
The tires, for safety reasons should always be in contact with the ground!
If the tires are up off the ground and you roll a heavy log onto the mill, the mill "could" tip over when it hits the logstops!
Also, if the tires are up off the ground and you need to get up on the mill for some reason, you could accidently step onto the top of the tire, then take a very bad fall!
If you are setting up your mill and find that one, or both of the tires are off the ground, put some pieces of lumber under them so that they are solidly supported!
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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #27 on: October 10, 2018, 09:51:57 PM »
Or put some wood down like a ramp, Pull the mill up on the wood to level side to side. 

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #28 on: October 11, 2018, 08:31:46 AM »
I left the rear toe board up and accidentally cut a couple of ramps.  Thats exactly how I use them.  :D
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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #29 on: October 11, 2018, 08:46:06 AM »
Regarding shimming under the tire on sloping ground, I like that when it comes time to pack up the mill it is now level, not like when I was setting up.  Have to remember to retrieve the board when driving out.  

That being said it is a safety thing to use substantial shims for the tires like 2 ft 2x10-12s and to remember that the mill is shimmed up,  when breaking it down at the end of a job.  It is when I lift up the loading arm assembly that movement of the mill occurs, if it is going to occur.  

Packing up time is often when a customer will be right near the mill either shoveling sawdust or offering to help. 
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Offline Magicman

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #30 on: October 11, 2018, 10:24:48 AM »
I have left many leveling boards at saw sites.  I have even recovered some a year later when I returned to saw additional logs.  ::)
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Offline samandothers

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #31 on: October 11, 2018, 11:19:38 AM »
Ok, The light has not come on about this method.


 Yes like edging a board, taking off only 1/4" or so there will be no stress to deal with.  If the board is wide on the ends you need more pressure on the center jacks , if its wider in the middle more pressure  on the end jacks. Steve
As I gather a 1 thick board on edge the length of the mill as when edging boards.  I assume board width does not matter, say 8.  Now saw a 1/4 off the edge. Flip and saw a 1/4 off the other edge.  The board should now be 7.5 wide at center and ends.
If the board is wider in the center I am visualizing the middle has sagged so the ends were trimmed more, like cutting the horns off a log, thus the middle jacks should be raised to correct, pushing or supporting the center better.
What am I missing, other than the correct understanding? :-\


Offline ladylake

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #32 on: October 11, 2018, 11:29:15 AM »
 Opposite. If the board is thinner in the middle the rail or rails have sagged as the head went over the center of board and need more support on the center jacks. If the ends are thinner the rail or rails are bending down when the head is at the ends.   Steve
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Offline samandothers

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #33 on: October 11, 2018, 12:27:52 PM »
Ah the light came on Steve.

Opposite. If the board is thinner in the middle the rail or rails have sagged as the head went over the center of board and need more support on the center jacks. If the ends are thinner the rail or rails are bending down when the head is at the ends.   Steve

I was visualizing the jacks raising the board/deck up into/toward the blade versus them raising the head and blade up away from the board.

Thanks

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #34 on: October 11, 2018, 01:37:37 PM »
Should say the head, blade, mill frame including front bunk are raised by raising the front foot.....
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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #35 on: October 11, 2018, 03:14:19 PM »
Although my tires may be touching the ground if I am set up on a level site, I don't want the tires taking any of the weight of a log.  The jacks are set to keep my TK mill level.  I level the high end, side to side, level it end to end, and raise the center jacks enough to prevent the frame from flexing.  If a log is big enough to put any load on the tires, I don't have it set up properly.  If a log flexes the tires or springs, then the mill frame is not staying rigid and level.  Another consideration would be that the load rating of your tires just covers the weight of the mill, and even a medium sized log would put you well over capacity.

As far as stepping on a tire, on my B20, the fenders are not removed for milling and you can stop on the fender if needed.
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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #36 on: October 11, 2018, 07:34:09 PM »
They told me when I picked my mill up...you will probably never, ever have to adjust the bed rails...ever!  :D so I don't even look at them!  :D
Yeah, Albemarle told me the same thing yesterday, but I think it is crap.  I am having some of the same issues with boards being thinner on the ends than in the middle on my LT50 with 110 hrs on it.  I called Albermarle.  I dont remeber the guys name, but he always makes me feel like an idot.  He said "dont ever adjust the bed rails" and that this was a normal condition.  He said we call those "those are thick and thins" and "it is rough cut lumber you know".  Well, that is ok to say that, but when I am sawing for a customer, it is a little embarrasing to have this nice pretty mill that cuts "thick and thins". WM sure does a good job advertising that their mills cut true lumber, and they will.  I have seen mine do it  before.  I do agree with the stress in logs.  However, mine cuts this way the first board under the top slab.  Plus, when I have a cant ready, I always clamp it, and then pull the clamp down to pull the cant tight agains the bed rails.  Sometimes this helps; sometimes it doesnt.  
Anyway, I am doing a full re-alignement on my mill now.  I am finding things out of whack that shouldn't be.   I figure WM sets these up to a certain procedure to get them "close", but I do not think anyone ever fine tuned my mill.  All the bunks were out a little; no two were the same. I went exactly by the book and measured 15 " to the bottom of the blade to each end of the bunk, exactly.  When I was done, I put a straight edge across the bunks and the front one is a 1/8" lower than the rest.  I have the mill up on all legs, and level.  I dont get it.  The correct proceure is to measure the distance from the blade to each bunk's end and make them all the same distance.  In my book, it is 15".  Once that is done, the tilt on the head is supposed to be adjusted to add 1/16 to the outside to account for dive (inside measurement 15", outside measurement 15 1/16.
I am thinking about buying me one of those little laser levels to help set up.  The way I have it figured, the legs on the main beam should be set first (the two on the ends, and then the two in the center).  Once those are set, the two on the other side shoud be ran down to what I call about three pops of the frame each. I think shooting a laser down the beam somehow and getting it very straight might help.  We will see.  I am going to try it, if nothing more than to rule it out.
Also, a word of advice for those of you that has the high performance guides; I went to adjust mine.  At 110 hrs, one of the bottom bolts that you use the little tool to adjust was completley frozen.  I broke the tabs off that little tool.  I finally had to take the guide off the mill and remove the block that holds the HPGs.  I had to put it on my lathe and drill the bolt out a little at a time till I could peel the rest of it out of the threads.  Got a new bolt on order.  I am making sure anti-seeze is on them before re-installing.  You guys with these guides may want to remove those bolts if you can and put some anti-seeze on them to keep them from rusting together.  The water from the lubemizer soaks these.  That is why they rust so bad.

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #37 on: October 12, 2018, 08:51:18 AM »
 

 ( mine cuts this way the first board under the top slab)


 If it cuts thin ends the first board after the slab you are dealing with stress , nothing else.  Assuming your blade is cutting straight. Steve
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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #38 on: October 12, 2018, 09:38:40 AM »
You can use a string now instead of buying a laser level. I did that once. You put a block of wood, say 1" thick on the rail, the round rail not the bed rails that the logs sit on. and put the string over the block, both ends and stretch it out from end to end and check it along the distance with another piece of 1" block. I cut three from the same short piece of a sticker. all three should be the same. If you can't slide the third block under the string at any location along it's length then the mail rail is not straight.

At the time I did it, my main rail was not straight as the outriggers were frozen to the ground in the winter time. I released the hitch end outrigger and the mill jumped and was again straight.

After you have your main rail straight then you can check your bed rails.
Good luck and yes anti-seize all bolts.

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #39 on: October 12, 2018, 09:47:12 AM »
redneckman;
You need to tell us what type of wood you are cutting that gives you a thick and thin piece after the first slab cut.
Also, what size log is this?

Some logs do have stress and tension and can change shape even after only the first cut.
Releasing the stress or tension with the slab cut, can make a log shift, even big logs.

Reading the stresses and tensions in a log is something that you'll have to learn by experience.

You need to watch the piece that is above the blade as you are sawing the pieces. Does it shift left or right? Does it crown in the middle?
Does the first cut end lift up?
These are all signs of tension or stress in the log.

Some times you can relieve it evenly by only making one cut and then roll the log 180 and make only one cut again.
Roll back and make a trim cut to get a flat face. It sucks to have to do all that but sometimes you have to.
Again good luck.

Jim Rogers
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Woodmizer 1994 LT30HDG24 with 6' Bed Extension

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #40 on: October 22, 2018, 10:51:45 PM »
One thing the OP didn't mention is that this is happening to him even on short logs, 4 ft long or so. He has asked me about this problem,  and later this week,  I'm going to see if I can detect something.  I hope I can help him, as he is very frustrated at this point. I'm going to check the bearings under the monorail,  not sure if this could be causing the problem 

Offline Stephen1

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Re: Woodmizer LT35HD inconsistent thickness end to end
« Reply #41 on: October 23, 2018, 09:28:29 AM »
One thing the OP didn't mention is that this is happening to him even on short logs, 4 ft long or so. He has asked me about this problem,  and later this week,  I'm going to see if I can detect something.  I hope I can help him, as he is very frustrated at this point. I'm going to check the bearings under the monorail,  not sure if this could be causing the problem
It will be great that someone can go check out what is happening. The 4ft log is something to do with sawing
I used to have a few issues when I 1st got my mill. I followed Marty Parsons instructions, about 4 years ago, and all my problems went away. I know I am set up correctly if I kick my middle legs and there is the tinest bit of movement in them. IMy end legs do all the work for setting up.
I drop my middle legs and lift each end until the pin clicks in then when you put a good log on, they then start to hold weight. 
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