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Author Topic: Bandsaw Mill Build - How long did yours take?  (Read 498 times)

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Offline Chamilton

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Bandsaw Mill Build - How long did yours take?
« on: February 15, 2019, 09:50:43 PM »
Hi Everyone,

My dad and I are contemplating building a bandsaw mill. We are roughly modeling it after the Cooks MP32. For those of you have built bandsaw mills (welded steel), how long did it take you? I know it won't be a quick project, but I'd like to get an Idea before spending the money on the steel and all of the components only to bite off more than I can chew.

For reference, I plan on buying the parts below and only really plan to build the trailer frame, log clamps, carriage, and saw head from "scratch".


Gas Engine
Blade Belts 
18.75" Diameter Sheaves
Pillow Blocks
Shaft Stock
V Groove Casters
Trailer axle kit
Trailer Coupler
Trailer Light Kit
Shaft Collars
Fenders
Trailer Lights
Blade Guides
Trailer Jacks

Please post pictures of your homemade mills, I'd love to see what you guys have done.

Thanks,

Cole


Offline ljohnsaw

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Re: Bandsaw Mill Build - How long did yours take?
« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2019, 10:02:45 PM »
What a great question!

So I went back to look.  Here is my thread and you can find plenty of pictures:Another Sawmill Build
My thread started in July of 2015 with a treadmill motor.  I mention that I started almost 2 years prior. ::)  But that was a lot of time spent just sittin' there.  By August, I was on my second engine that I still run - an 18hp B&S twin cylinder. 

Doing what you are doing (buying stuff instead of inventing like I did), you should be able to have a mill up and running with about 80 hours of work.  If that is done in a few weeks or a few months, that's up to you :D
John Sawicky

Just North-East of Sacramento...

SkyTrak 9038, Davis Little Monster backhoe, Case 16+4 Trencher, Home Built 42" capacity/32" cut Bandmill up to 54' long - using it all to build a timber frame cabin.

Offline Chamilton

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Re: Bandsaw Mill Build - How long did yours take?
« Reply #2 on: February 15, 2019, 10:32:59 PM »
Thanks ljohnsaw,

That makes me a bit less worried about the whole thing. I'm a new father and the thought of taking on a project this large with an infant was a little daunting.

Your mill looks great! Are you using all chain and sprockets to raise and lower your sawhead? I noticed the cooks MP32 does and I like that over the cable pulley system. Did you have to have the long chain holders that go up like cooks does or were you able to engineer a different way?

Offline ljohnsaw

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Re: Bandsaw Mill Build - How long did yours take?
« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2019, 01:11:18 AM »
Somewhere in there is the pictures of the raise/lower system.  At my old work they had those filing cabinets that roll to conserve space.  There were cranks on the end to provide power to the wheels.  I took a few of those when they scrapped it out.  They had some gear reduction.  I cascaded them to the point that one revolution of crank handle raised the head about 1/4" or so.  The four vertical chains are fixed.  The head "crawls" up the chains via the pair of shafts with sprocket on them.
John Sawicky

Just North-East of Sacramento...

SkyTrak 9038, Davis Little Monster backhoe, Case 16+4 Trencher, Home Built 42" capacity/32" cut Bandmill up to 54' long - using it all to build a timber frame cabin.

Offline thecfarm

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Re: Bandsaw Mill Build - How long did yours take?
« Reply #4 on: February 16, 2019, 06:07:26 AM »
Chamilton,welcome to the forum.
What's all the lumber going to be used for? Going to add on for the baby? :D
Model 6020-20hp Manual Thomas bandsaw,TC40A 4wd 40 hp New Holland tractor, 450 Norse Winch, Heatmor 400 OWB,YCC 1978-79

Offline kelLOGg

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Re: Bandsaw Mill Build - How long did yours take?
« Reply #5 on: February 16, 2019, 07:06:34 AM »
I didn't build my MP32 but I certainly made extensive mods. Cooks didn't offer power feeds at the time I bought mine (2002) so I added my own. You may find pics in my gallery that are helpful or if you have a specific question don't hesitate to contact me. I'll help if I can. It is a rugged mill.
Bob
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 JRWoodchuck

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Re: Bandsaw Mill Build - How long did yours take?
« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2019, 11:18:09 AM »
Depends on the kind of time and equipment you have. If your working full time raising a family and only have a angle grinder to do  your cutting with it takes awhile. But if you have a machine shop and are both retired and are mechanically inclined it shouldn't take too long. If I could have solely worked on mine I would guess it would have been a couple weeks maybe. 
Home built bandsaw mill still trying find the owners manual!

Offline Chamilton

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Re: Bandsaw Mill Build - How long did yours take?
« Reply #7 on: February 17, 2019, 09:15:36 PM »
Thanks for all the replies. I do woodworking as a hobby so i'll keep some of the lumber and I did think about using some for a home addition or workshop. I may also start selling it but I'm not sure how well that would go in my area. 

I'll have to check out your MP32 pics kelLOGg, they don't show many detailed pictures of these sawmills on their website. 

Thanks JRWoodchuck, I don't have a great lineup of metal working tools but I will have a chop saw, angle grinder, welder, bench grinder/wire wheel, and potentially a oxy torch. I'm pretty mechanically inclined but I don't have a ton of experience with metal work, just a couple welding classes that I took in high school.

Offline Wudman

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Re: Bandsaw Mill Build - How long did yours take?
« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2019, 10:47:09 AM »
I built mine in a handful of weekends.  It wasn't that long for construction.  It is a four post design with acme threaded rod (5 threads per inch) to raise and lower the head.  I used a 5 horsepower industrial electric motor that I pirated off a grain elevator.  It is a "man".  I had another newer model 5 HP on hand and it doesn't have near the power of that 50 year old unit.  The rails are 4" angle.  Cross bunks are 2x3 box tubing.  Blade guides are generic stacked bearings from Agri-Supply.  The acme rods are hanging in pancake bearings at the top.  Compact spare tires were pirated out of Lincoln Continentals from the pick a part yard.  Axles are Ford 9 inch, but I had to turn them to fit the pillow block bearings I used.  I have 24 feet of rail and can saw about 22 feet.  There is about 27 inches between blade guides when fully open.

I had a metal cutting bandsaw and an arc welder.  Take your time with your welds so you don't warp anything.  I had some movement on my four-post and had to do a little manipulation to get it squared.



  

The two acme rods are connected by #40 chain.  Notice the 3/4 bolt on top of the right hand rod.  I can sit a cordless drill on it and power the head up and down.  It will move quickly.  The steering wheel on the other side is for minor adjustments.  The acme rod will hold its position.  It does not move during operation.

 



It will saw. That's my log arch sitting beside the green house behind the mill.



  

It is a 3/4 ton extended cab Chevrolet pick-up frame.  That's a 12,000 pound mile marker winch on top.  I built it to handle tree length logs for a log cabin. 

Wudman

Offline bedway

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Re: Bandsaw Mill Build - How long did yours take?
« Reply #9 on: February 18, 2019, 01:11:17 PM »
Pecking away at mine by myself I completed mine over a winter. Of course not being a young pup anymore, my work ethic isn't quite what it use to be. Since its first use it has been a continuous progression of up grades. Feel free to view my gallery in hopes it will in some way help with your build.


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