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Author Topic: winch for saw head lifting  (Read 1537 times)

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Offline charles mann

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winch for saw head lifting
« on: January 29, 2019, 02:11:41 PM »
looking at different, but cost saving methods of lifting my saw head. i saw on another build thread, where a member used a winch on his, and even hudson uses them on their mills. instead of using synthetic or standard wire rope. i want to tear up a new winch, somehow, mount a sprocket on the drum and go with chain drive. not sure exactly the weight of the saw beam with pwr plant, wheels, and all the other stuff on it, but im figuring around 1500 lbs. we use this winch https://www.warn.com/4000-dc-winch-94000 at work to pull our internal fire fighting tank inside our acft, mostly bc at the time, it had the slowest FPM line in speed. granted the tank is on 8" pneumatic tires, the tank weighs around 1500 lbs, and add the dolly system, another 200 lbs and rolls relatively easy, even going up the install ramps, which is about a 4-5° angle. after using it for the past 3 yrs, i have noticed that it doesnt have the tendencies to keep moving after releasing the switch, like some winches do. 

any thoughts? any experience with the above mentioned winch for this type of application? even other brands, do the users have issues with drifting while raising/lowering? lowering of course should provide the best chances for drift after releasing the switch, but is it negligible or fairly drastic, enough so, that 1 has to bump it back up?

this is a temp solution, seeings how the system WM uses, with motor and gb, would cost around $800-1000 for both, then the added sprockets and double roller chain.  
Temple, Tx
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Offline millwright

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2019, 02:25:38 PM »
Any good winch should be able to lift and lower, more important is the drifting. I ran a Hudson a few times and whatever brand they used it worked pretty good

Offline BigZ La

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2019, 02:36:33 PM »
Friend of mine used a 12v tarp motor. Cost him around 125-150 but was easy to mount the gear.

Offline charles mann

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2019, 02:51:20 PM »
Friend of mine used a 12v tarp motor. Cost him around 125-150 but was easy to mount the gear.
does it drift, especially during lowering?
Temple, Tx
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Offline mike_belben

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2019, 02:53:43 PM »
Run your winch or tarpmotor or DC linear actuator motor etc to a jackshaft and then run your cable or chain ends to the head off the jackshaft.  This way youve got a center mounted winch and end mounted lifting for squareness (design in some form of turnbuckle slack adjustment) and a very easy way to make a holding brake if your winch brake fades out over time.  You could use ebay motorcycle or bicycle parts or even just a sheave on the jackshaft with a rubber belt tugged over it to bind up [like an oil filter strap wrench in reverse]

A dc reversing contactor is the easiest way to power your smaller winches.  Harbor freight sells just the remotes for it i think.  Surplus center and ebay will also have then around $40.  I see no need for a 4k winch if you use a jackshaft, they have like 10:1 planetary reduction. A 1500lber should do it for $60 and be remote control.
Revelation 3:20

Offline redbeard

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2019, 03:09:57 PM »
On the Hudson 60 it came with a 2500 lb winch and I had braking problems right away. Worked fine at idle but engaging band blade in the log at high rpm it would start slipping.
The sent me a new 3500 lb. right away never had issue again.
The lifting design is real simple roller bar. What ever you decide too get make sure the braking is stout, and keep your cable going in winch lube free 
Whidbey Woodworks and Custom Milling  2019 Cooks AC 3662T High production band mill and a Hud-son 60 Diesel wide cut bandmill  JD 2240 50hp Tractor with 145 loader IR 1044 all terrain fork lift  Cooks sharp

Offline charles mann

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2019, 03:10:56 PM »
Mike, 
i was watching a vid on the wm lx450, and they use, which after a google search, a jackshaft, which i was planning on doing anyways, just didnt know it was called a jack shaft. due to the weight and 10' wide saw beam, i would HAVE to lift from both sides to achieve an even lift. i was thinking turn buckle too, but i was also brainstorming the idea of a bracket (probably 1/2" plate cut and welded into a "U") and using an eyebolt with double nut at the bottom and single jam nut above the bracket. 

you really think a 1500 lb winch should be used to lift and hold a roughly 1500 lb system? by NO means am i saying it CANT lift, but being at its limit is in my industry, asking for trouble. the reason i was going that brand or big winch is, im familiar with it, i know using it in the application we purchased it for, it works within its limits and doesnt have any creep/drift, and the way it is designed, with the planetary gb mounted to the motor, instead of a shaft running through the drum from motor to gb. this design, along with the tarp winches, now that i see how they are made, would be easier to mount a sprocket, without having to drastically mod the winch drum/gb. and drastic may be a bit of an over statement. idk, but i think, IF there is no or minimal creep/drift in a tarp motor, i will go that route, since its already designed the way i would have to mod the atv winch.     
 
Temple, Tx
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Offline mike_belben

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2019, 03:20:40 PM »
1500lb winch is rated at 1500lb direct line pull on the first wrap, and no i would not use one that small in a direct pull application. But with a sprocket to jackshaft you can then gear reduce the ratio to slow the speed and increase the torque capacity.  For example If you used a 20tooth drive and a 40 tooth driven youd have a 3000lb winch pulling up a 750lb head give or take.  And itll be slow enough to land on the mark every time.  The gear reduction is also in favor of the brake holding.  

Yeah each head height change takes more time but you cant have everything without lots of $.  
Revelation 3:20

Offline charles mann

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #8 on: January 29, 2019, 03:25:16 PM »
On the Hudson 60 it came with a 2500 lb winch and I had braking problems right away. Worked fine at idle but engaging band blade in the log at high rpm it would start slipping.
The sent me a new 3500 lb. right away never had issue again.
The lifting design is real simple roller bar
i saw the pics of your's in your gallery, which is what made me go back to thinking about the winch method. and if your 2500 was slipping on our saw head, and yet it could have been just a bad winch, but they sent you something bigger (could hudson have had enough reports of slipping systems using those lighter winches?) again brings up the decision of using more power than required. plus im betting, but not guaranteeing, your saw head doesnt weigh what mine will end up weighing. id rather have it and not need it, than need it and NOT have it. i lucked out on the price ($3000, running) of the engine, granted it WAY to big for my needs, but to have to replace/rebuild, along with replacing the band wheels, blade guides, blade, more material to build/repair blade/wheel covers, is $ id rather not spend, when i could have spent an extra $100-150 for a double/triple capacity system. 
and this idea may NOT work, and i have to go to acme rods, which i will still have the winch and chain and some of the sprockets, all in all, would probably cost about what the motor/gb, that still may be to lite for my purpose, that wm uses. hopefully wm will have the 450 at the belton fair and i can take a look at it and get the part numbers off the motor and gb and research to see if they have to umph to do what i need them to do.  
Temple, Tx
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Offline charles mann

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #9 on: January 29, 2019, 03:34:37 PM »
1500lb winch is rated at 1500lb direct line pull on the first wrap, and no i would not use one that small in a direct pull application. But with a sprocket to jackshaft you can then gear reduce the ratio to slow the speed and increase the torque capacity.  For example If you used a 20tooth drive and a 40 tooth driven youd have a 3000lb winch pulling up a 750lb head give or take.  And itll be slow enough to land on the mark every time.  The gear reduction is also in favor of the brake holding.  

Yeah each head height change takes more time but you cant have everything without lots of $.  
ahhhh, so that is how you snatch block using sprockets. so id have about 2x the lifting capacity required. only down side with the slow speed, is IF i used, and i might, the mill for extra $$ on the side. i guess i could just charge less, then there wouldnt be a downside, unless the customer was in a hurry. i guess he/she should have gotten there 15 min earlier then.  ;D
Temple, Tx
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Offline mike_belben

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #10 on: January 29, 2019, 03:55:59 PM »
Going heavier AND faster will indeer take more winch.  The challenge is that higher power winches do indeed run faster and at some point, you may start missing your mark and having to go back.  None of us knows the sweet spot really until the r&d phase begins. If you build with jackshaft and sprockets then you have a tunability built in.  Either to dial in a small winch or make changes from a small to a larger one down the line.  There is also the option of using a belt and a pair of drillpress pulleys to give you a 3speed range setup.  Youd need to use a brake and an idler for belt speed changes. Itll need to be tight to hold up 1500#

If u have the quicker winch already, sure build around that one.  If you dont id consider starting at the smaller one because it will be a cheaper replacement part.  Chinese winches are as consumable as starters and alternators.  Cheap enough one can keep a spare on hand is a big virtue to me.  Driving 80miles back home on a custom cut because any winch croaked will be a bummer.  I have known the remote controllers to come alive on their own and drain batteries so plan in a disconnect switch from the get go. 
Revelation 3:20

Offline charles mann

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #11 on: January 29, 2019, 04:08:12 PM »
DC-Powered Vehicle Mount Electric Winch: Pulling - Gamut

this 1 is in between, on capacity and line speed. plus, depending shaft size, i could just direct couple it to the jack shaft and reduce 2 sprockets and a lil chain. but it has a HIGH amp draw under full load, but with gearing, im guess the draw would be cut in half???
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Offline BigZ La

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #12 on: January 29, 2019, 08:27:50 PM »
Friend of mine used a 12v tarp motor. Cost him around 125-150 but was easy to mount the gear.
does it drift, especially during lowering?
Ill have to ask him tomorrow but I have seen trucks running down the road with the tarp not completely down or up. That kind of wind resistance tells me it has pretty good braking. 

Offline kelLOGg

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #13 on: January 29, 2019, 08:47:28 PM »
There's a long and old thread on this subject: 

Question on homemade bandsaw head lift in Sawmills and Milling
Cook's MP-32, 16HP, 20' (modified w/ power feed, up/down, loader/turner)
DH kiln, CatClaw, setter, tandem trailer, log arches, tractor, thumb tacks

Offline charles mann

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #14 on: January 29, 2019, 09:44:27 PM »
There's a long and old thread on this subject:

Question on homemade bandsaw head lift in Sawmills and Milling
thank you. i did read this a long time ago, well, long for me, probably 6-7 months ago, and knew there was something on here, just couldn't find the right keywords for the search engine. even though he went cable, and I'm not taking any chances, I'm going to go roller chain, probably double roller on both sides. and as the cooks system lifts from 4 posts, i think i may end up having to do that too, depending where i have to place my engine to keep the radiator in the back, blowing the saw dust off the engine and away from the intake side of the radiator. i do remember on crusarius's linn mill build, we discussed lifting from all 4 corners and the problem that may arise, along with getting them timed with ea other. but i may not have a choice. i think iv found a tarp motor, like what bigz recommended that will work, now to see if i can find it on eBay, or better yet, amazon, since i have $600 in amazon gift cards to still use. i thought about wheel chair or power scooter motors too, but having to fart with getting a 24v dc alternator, then stepping it down to run the rest of my 12v system will be a pain. but i guess what isn't, when building from scratch
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Offline mike_belben

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #15 on: January 30, 2019, 10:09:11 AM »
How does a tarp motors output torque compare to that of a cheap winch? How does the price compare?  How quick and local can you get another?

Same with the cable, you can buy a lot of aircraft cable for the price of a foot of double roller chain.  Then the sprockets.  Then how to tram them.  A cable crimp is 50 cents, smash on a loop and hook it to a $6 turnbuckle and anchor eyelet that you can get anywhere instead of need to machine yourself.  Youre away too much to find the time for every custom part.    


Price out a pair of double chain sprockets and then the keyed shafts.  It frees up a lot of time and money to just drill a hole through the shaft ends, insert the wire cable and wind it up.  1500lbs, no big deal.  Ive seen heavier commercial heat treat oven doors and baskets lifted this way with ease and no maintenance issues.  If you somehow snap one, go cut off 6 feet of cable from your loop and smash on another 50 cent lead crimp then back to sawing.  I wanna see this thing get built!
Revelation 3:20

Offline charles mann

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #16 on: January 30, 2019, 11:24:42 AM »
mike, i dont trust cable. i was yarding on a walnut top, that my tractor picked up, so just under 3,000, with a 12,000 lb winch, and a straight line pull. i had inspected the cable bare handed prior to pulling the main log, got the log onto the trailer and was attempting to get the canopy section loaded. i just happened to be standing between my tailgate and the headache rack on my gooseneck when the cable let go, sending it back towards me, getting tangled up in #2 pencil lead sized twigs on a live tree i had parked up. that cable was 7/16" and i had a tight wrap on the drum. i guess it got boogered up yarding the log onto the trialer and i didnt see it. 

i aso saw a 1" cable break and broke a soldier's legs. we had the 88 recovery track pulling 1 of our howitzers out of the mud and for the 88 to have solid ground, we ran nearly all his cable out, and snatched it for max pull. i dont trust cable, even though, YES, i agree with 100% of what you said, and i believe in the KISS method, keep it simple stupid. 
as for roller chain and sprockets, tractor supply always has sprockets and chain on hand, and if my local store doesnt, there are 3 more within a 45 min drive that should. 
as for ease of getting a tarp motor, probably austin (1 .5hr drive), san antone (2-2.5hrs), houston (3hrs and if my business partner is off shift, he can fly it to me), dallas/ft worth (3hrs nd if 1 of my maint clients is hm, he can fly it to me). 

but yes sir, simplicity is always the easiest when it goes down, compared to more complex systems. and i may try the cable method to get up and running at first, but upgrade later.  
Temple, Tx
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Offline mike_belben

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #17 on: January 30, 2019, 11:32:58 AM »
Then use a piece of amsteel as if it were cable.  There is no way its just gonna randomly snap 2 sides without warning.  Thered be a huge birdnest fray hanging out for you to see.

I just wanna see you get up and running.  Life flies by while we plan for it.  Mine sure has anyway
Revelation 3:20

Offline charles mann

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #18 on: January 30, 2019, 01:56:47 PM »
i wasnt even thinking of synthetic rope, instead of steel wire rope. ill check it out. 
Temple, Tx
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Offline charles mann

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Re: winch for saw head lifting
« Reply #19 on: January 31, 2019, 11:47:31 AM »
@Vautour 
even though the idle pulley thread kinda got off topic, dealing with lifting and now into band life 

I see you have your sprockets and chain laid up there for an example reference or possibly you mocking the system up before committing to burning a rod to it. 
Where will your drive motor be? i know how i plan on building mine, and that is mounting the winch and jack shaft to the saw beam, running a short loop of chain around the jack shaft sprocket from the winch, then using the "S" configuration to snake the chain from the beam, to the carriage upper cross over structure, on both side. 

I may be over thinking all of this, and may not understand it till i just start doing it. my brain works in a monkey see, monkey do fashion. I can read all day long, but until i put it to practical application, i stay lost.

when i was going to go all hydraulic, i was going to use 2 rams. mounted to the carriage, to pull the chain over a crossover tube like yours. but since im not going full hydraulic yet, im trying to keep it simple, and i hate to say it, cheap.  
Temple, Tx
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