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Author Topic: Circular mill research  (Read 993 times)

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Offline Jim Fahlin

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Circular mill research
« on: January 03, 2019, 08:51:46 PM »
Hello, everyone. Right off the bat I am a greenhorn to the sawmill machinery (so bear with me on terminology). I am sort of getting my feet wet trying to figure out a sawmill of friend of mine has and maybe purchase it for a future operation. He believes he has a Frick 00 somewhere around 1901 or 1903, they used a Frick parts book for replacing parts also while they were sawing/logging. I spoke to another that deals in used parts who believes its mostly a Farquhar setup after looking at my pictures. I have only spent a few days so far looking for information and speaking to people. I have looked in a couple Frick parts books, and, found some Farquhar information here in the forum. I actually spoke to another person tonight and he mentioned there should be a plate right at the lever for Farquhar. I either missed it when I took some pictures or it wasn't transferred when it was rebuilt.

There seems to be very similar designs between the two companies as I have read. I am unable to post any pictures at the moment so I should at least tell a little about my adventure here. 

One thing I have noticed is the saw guide, it is not like Frick's more horseshoe-shape, the Farquhar seems to be more of a 'squared' shape and position to the blade. I might need a better picture of that.

Blade sizes 52" and 54"

The head blocks have measurement increments all across the bottom on the carriage.

The Setworks assembly has 7 fingers about 1/2 thick each.

7" wheels for the carriage

I hope to get some pictures up this weekend and more information up to learn some more about these old machines!!
The Moose

Offline Ron Wenrich

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2019, 05:11:31 AM »
I ran a Farquhar for awhile.  It was a rebuild and was missing a dog.  I did use a Frick dog, but it had to be filed out to fit the Farquhar upright.  There is also a letter that starts all the uprights.  Frick has one letter, and Farquhar had a different letter.  I can't remember them right now.  But, that is a method of finding the difference in the mills.  

As for saw guides, my Farquhar was round, not square.  I wouldn't hold too much credence in saw guides as an identifier.  They are interchangeable from one mill to the next.  
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Offline bandmiller2

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2019, 05:46:41 AM »
Welcome Jim. There are few of the older handset mills that are pure bred, most have a mixture of parts. My own mill is predominantly Chase with a lot of Lane parts. Its the condition of the parts not so much who made them, many sawyers preferred certain head blocks or setworks over another. Setting up and running an old circular mill is a lot of work, and efficient operation is not the easiest but its rewarding and worth the effort. There are a lot of guys here to help you, good luck. Frank C. 
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Offline Jim Fahlin

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2019, 06:11:49 AM »
Thank you for the welcome, Frank. I had a slight feeling this would be a challenge.

Ron,

When you speak of upright, are you speaking about the headblock on the carriage? 

The log dogs on this unit are the Side Operating style which look to be a spitting image between Frick Co and Farquhar and probably others. The husk on this is wooden frame along with the rest of it, track structure and carriage structure. I have not made any measurements on the husk yet though. The drive wheel for this mill is a 2-piece which I was told is the old style drive wheel.

Ron, anyone else too, are there any other markings that you have seen that could be used when identifying a mill or a mill part besides a ID plate?
The Moose

Offline moodnacreek

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2019, 09:01:00 AM »
Reprinted brochures for Farquhar can be found on the web. I believe Montgomery Ward sawmills  where Farquhar and bell saw. Sawmill builders used different parts as time went on . Experienced users would want certain dogs and set works and feed styles. 

Offline Ron Wenrich

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #5 on: January 04, 2019, 12:17:28 PM »
The upright is the part that comes up from the headblock, and rack and dog are attached to it.  The rack is a bit wider on the Farquhar, but the Frick dog gears match up to it.

Farquhar was made in York, PA, and Frick was made in Waynesboro, PA.  They're about 30 miles apart.  Seems they had pretty much the same design for most of the mill, especially on the newer mills.

There is a picture of a 1922 Farquhar over at Vintage Machinery.  They have a much different dog setup.  It looks like the dogs screwed down.  That was not the dog system that I had.  It could be a different sized mill.  You can see they had Farquhar stamped on the feed works.  If there was any rebuild, a lot of those markings probably didn't survive.  

How did they come to dating a 1901 or 1903?  There was some design changes over the years.  
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Offline bandmiller2

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #6 on: January 04, 2019, 07:39:43 PM »
Jim, what's very important is the saws and if there are bits and shanks available. Simons has systematically bought out competitors and discontinued bits and shanks for their saws, now their the only game in town. One of my saws is an old Diston and when I run out of my small supply of bits it will be a wall hanger. Some of my favorite bits were Hoe. No one has much faith in the Pacific rim bits. Frank C.
A man armed with common sense is packing a big piece

Offline Don_Papenburg

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #7 on: January 04, 2019, 11:06:53 PM »
Frick used a   Y prefix for part numbers   and  C suffix for pulleys      according to my parts book
Frick saw mill  '58   820 John Deere power. Diamond T trucks

Offline Jim Fahlin

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #8 on: January 05, 2019, 07:13:58 AM »
Moodnacreek, I did come across a thread here that DMCOY had posted a Montgomery Ward piece of literature that I have been looking through besides some bits an pieces around the forum.

Ron, I have that noted to check next time on the uprights when I am going there. I do not know how they resulted with a 1901 or 1903 year though. I will have to ask a few more questions. 

Frank, is there a marking on the side of insertable tooth, or do I have to take it out to find it? or would this be more of a overall appearance? I was shown a USDA Forestry circular saw book, maybe that may show the different shanks and bits?

Thank you, Don. Noted for my next visit.

It appears the literature DMCOY had posted lists Model 50 Heavy-Duty, Model 90 All roller-bearing and Model 120 Light-tractor-power for Farquhar. I have not read further, since I am looking at the pictures compared to mine visually so far.

Would anyone know what Frick may also have that is close to the Double-aught model?
The Moose

Offline Jim Fahlin

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #9 on: January 05, 2019, 07:50:56 AM »
The setworks, I will probably need another picture of this.
The Moose

Offline Jim Fahlin

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #10 on: January 05, 2019, 07:58:31 AM »
The Moose

Offline Jim Fahlin

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #11 on: January 05, 2019, 08:05:48 AM »
The Moose

Offline Jim Fahlin

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #12 on: January 05, 2019, 08:09:34 AM »
The Dogs, the picture is a bit dark so I will get a brighter picture.
The Moose

Offline Jim Fahlin

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #13 on: January 05, 2019, 08:49:13 AM »
The carriage.


More information I wrote down when I was at the mill the first time.

12" cable drum
4" belts
Right handed mill, the shaft on the carriage was measured at + or - 1-5/16"
Driveshaft 2-5/16"

Here is a better view of the drive wheel
The Moose

Offline Jim Fahlin

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #14 on: January 05, 2019, 08:58:03 AM »
The saw guide, I had to edit the picture to try to brighten it. I will get a better picture next time. 
The Moose

Offline moodnacreek

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #15 on: January 05, 2019, 09:13:19 AM »
The sponsor Menominee Saw may have a chart online showing bits and shanks. Or you could look at Pipers saw shop or B.F. Payne for a chart. The saw style and gauge are stamped on the shanks in your saws. On the shanks, like piston rings, there can be over sizes within the style. On a sawmill the biggest worry is the condition of the mandrel, it's bearings and the saw collars.

Offline dgdrls

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #16 on: January 05, 2019, 09:29:27 AM »
Welcome to the forum Jim,

look forward to seeing more on this mill

D

Offline Ron Wenrich

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #17 on: January 05, 2019, 02:18:28 PM »
On the very first upright, at the top of the rack and inside the indent, there looks to be some writing on it.  Might be a part number.  Interesting that there is wood on the drive pulley.  The belt tightener looks a bit like the Farquhar set up on the Vintage Machinery page.  

YouTube has several ways of identifying the different Frick mills.  They have the Double-aught mill.  I've attached the one that IDs the #1 Frick.   If you go to 1:46, you will clearly see the part number cast into the upright.  On the #1, that part # is 672-C.  Also, on the rack, you can see the number 711C.  This is what I was seeing in your photo, but can't make out what it is.  I was told that the C designates Frick by an equipment salesman, many years ago.  



Also comparing the setworks from your picture to the Frick, they're not the same.  But, the setworks in the video are the newer style, and the ones I'm most familiar with.  The setworks in your picture has a tail on it.  I'm thinking that might remind me of the Farquhar.  Its been 30 yrs.  If it is an older Frick setworks, they might have looked like that, as well.  Perhaps there are some numbers cast in some of the parts on the setworks.  
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Offline jimparamedic

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #18 on: January 06, 2019, 09:48:54 AM »
Many of the old mills are put together from many different mills. At one time each region had its own mill manufacture. So many of the mills you find today are bastard mill because many of the parts are enter changeable 

Offline Jim Fahlin

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #19 on: January 06, 2019, 10:41:37 AM »
I am told the brand of this one, to be Frick, was determined by the use of several books when it was purchased and rebuilt; speaking to him again.

Has anyone seen a belt-width as a standard across the market on these mills? Is 4" common for light to heavy mills?

Edit: According to the video Frick has quite a few sizes with the Double-aught, now where he pointed, would this be your tensioning belt?
The Moose

Offline Jim Fahlin

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #20 on: January 06, 2019, 11:08:19 AM »
Would I be correct to say, like ax manufacturers, there were quite a few sawmill companies?
The Moose

Offline Jim Fahlin

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #21 on: January 06, 2019, 11:40:23 AM »
The upright looks like it could be a #5100 or #510D, Ron, I would have to confirm that on my next visit since I cannot zoom in 100% clearly.

I looked over the saw shanks on Menominee and I see the stamped markings to look for, I will keep that noted for my next visit, also.
The Moose

Offline Ron Wenrich

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #22 on: January 06, 2019, 12:11:10 PM »
Look for as many numbers as you can find.  It'll help you determine if there are lots of parts from lots of different mill mfg.  Anything that is cast will probably have a number cast into it.

I think you'll find that mill makers were pretty much regional.  Since the main power source was steam, the larger mill makers also made steam engines or boilers.  Also, you had to have a way of casting your parts.  The smaller iron works could also make a few.  But, I imagine the demand was rather low, since getting logs was more of an arduous task than today.  

After the gasoline engine came about, it was easier to put up a seasonal mill.  Logging became easier, as did transportation.  Capital investment was a lot less.  After WWII, those mills became more numerous, and demand went up, so more mfg came on line.  Some survived, some didn't.

I know in my area, the predominant mills were Frick, Farquhar, American, Ireland, Meadows, and Lane.  There probably are a few others.  Most of those were produced in the northeast.  
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Offline Jim Fahlin

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #23 on: January 06, 2019, 01:10:03 PM »
10-4. I will post what I find as soon as I have the chance to cruise over again.

Thank you everyone, thus far  thumbs-up thumbs-up thumbs-up
The Moose

Offline moodnacreek

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Re: Circular mill research
« Reply #24 on: January 06, 2019, 05:38:53 PM »
4" is very common.  If you cut down [the sides] of a wider used belt take equal amounts off each side. Splicing may be more of a problem if you have never done any but T.S. stocks belt lacing for round balers and tools for same.


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