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Author Topic: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"  (Read 1875 times)

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Offline mainiac1

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I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« on: June 07, 2019, 11:47:53 PM »
I have a Woodmizer LT15. Bought it a few months ago used..its 5 years old. Having problems trying to consistently cut the same thickness of lumber. It has a magnetic scale on the upright which you adjust after you cut the slab off. Initially I tried going 4 to 4 which I thought would cut a 1-1/8" thick board. But I have to add a few clicks to get it to cut 1-1/8". same with other dimensions. Each click/notch on the wheel is supposed to be 1/16" but it really isn't. Has anyone run into an issue like this? if so, how do I fix it? Scale wrong? chain or cables stretched? I cut some 17-20" pine logs yesterday and tonight for some fence materials and I don't know if any of them are a consistant size I tried to cut.  I've cut probly 800 feet of lumber so far, starting with 3'-6' logs, but when I stray from 1-1/8" or 2-1/4" lumber its trial and error...mark the log end, count the notches, start a cut, adjust a notch or 2, and cut. Remember the number of notches I used for the cut to duplicate it. Really starting to pith me off! It can't be this hard. How many feet of lumber did you guys cut to be somewhat proficient in cutting the sizes you wanted? thanks for letting me vent a little.

Offline Stuart Caruk

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #1 on: June 08, 2019, 02:26:14 AM »
Depending on the mill, the scale can vary by how you look at it. Sometimes you
re eyeball isn't on the same level and parallax sets in. This is why they invented simple set to give a consistent drop in the cut, the Accuset to do the same and more plus allow you to take the kerf into account.

Your scale doesn't include a kerf allowance that can be adjusted. So the quarter scale allows for an 1/8" kerf. You need to solve the why part before you get a reputation for thick and thin lumber. I get a lot of business because the customer is sick and tired of the thick and thin boards from my competition. I compete on quality, and typically charge more, yet I get the work. Go figure.

Stuart Caruk
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Offline WDH

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2019, 07:24:32 AM »
Woodmizer has two magnetic scales.  One is called the standard scale and that sounds like the one that you have.  Going between the 4 - 4 marks yields a board thickness of 1".  The other scale is the hardwood scale.  Between the 4 - 4 marks yields a thickness of 1 1/8".  You need to order the hardwood scale. 
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Offline jimparamedic

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #3 on: June 08, 2019, 07:48:50 AM »
I am a circular guy but even with these it takes some time to get into a set pattern as to looking at the scale in the same way how much and how hard to turn or pull the adjustment you will get a feel for the mill and you will know that its right without looking. 800bdft is just a good start every time you saw it will get better. It probable took 5000bdft for me to get dialed in. And yes we have to adjust our self to to cut good lumber

Offline Magicman

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2019, 08:11:57 AM »
And as soon as you get it dialed in, stress in the log/cant either raises or lowers one or both ends of the cant.  :o  Sawing is always a moving target.  ::)
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Offline YellowHammer

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2019, 08:36:48 AM »
I had a LT15, it cuts super flat its either the scale or log stress or both.

As said, make sure you use the hardwood scale. Set the auxiliary pointer on the dial to your next drop including band kerf.

The clicks should be exact, when in doubt, take a disposable cant and touch in the end with the running band and make a shallow scratch kerf cut and back out, drop a couple, few notches and do it again and again then check the kerf notches with a ruler so youll have confidence the drops are correct.  This eliminates any effects of stress on the cuts and shows the true drop distances.
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Offline mainiac1

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #6 on: June 08, 2019, 10:45:55 AM »
Thank you for the quick replies. Will order a hardwood scale and measure some cuts on junk log to see how accurate they are.

Offline Percy

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #7 on: June 08, 2019, 02:35:20 PM »
 

 

We have a 30 year lease on 40 acres here and the company that we formed to deal with lease stuff is called  "THICK AND THIN LUMBER CO. INC."
I made this sign back in 2006 for the gate leading to our mills.....We came up with the idea same as you because of the nature of our lumber... :D :D :D
GOLDEN RULE : The guy with the gold, makes the rules.

Offline Kingcha

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #8 on: June 08, 2019, 03:02:52 PM »
Lt 15 came with a permanent scale that measure off the bed.  That is all I use but it does require so simple math.   I make up charts and laminate them.
It really helps when your sawing your logs into cants.

 


  

 
Matt 
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Offline caveman

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #9 on: June 08, 2019, 03:44:56 PM »
When I learned how to use the wheel, I did not use the magnetic scales much at all.  We would ensure that the wheel scale was dead on for the measurement that it showed (1" on the scale would produce a 1" board).  The wheel scale moves the head 2" for each revolution.  The inch marks and half inch marks on the wheel are longer than the others and divide the wheel into fourths so If you want to open at 10 1/2" (figuring 1/8" kerf) to saw 2" slabs and have a 2" on the bottom you know that 10 1/2" will be at the 3 or 9 position on the wheel if I remember correctly.  It has been several months since I have used one.

Once you get the hang of it and the mill is set up just right you can name your mill consistent and predictable sawmill.

Where at in Florida are you?  

Offline Woodpecker52

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #10 on: June 08, 2019, 05:23:21 PM »
Easy to cut if you square the cant then just drop the head by clicks, on the LT15 start it is one rev. is one inch , so a inch cut is one rev. plus 2 notches.  I have a couple of painted magnets that before I drop it I mark where I am going.  As for wavy cut.  Need to level the bed and head to the bed as per manual if not you cuts will be off.  Also need to adjust log stops if they are off you will be cutting funny angles.  I usually cut the first then flip it 180 and make the next cut and raise it 2 notches and watch as I pull it back for any problems in ht. variations.  Usually something minor, most of the time it is a dull blade and head speed, I automated my feedworks. So I will push it next and see if that solves it usually does.  Sometimes the log is just a bogger bear and no matter what you do it acts up.  Those usually become beams or firewood.
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Offline mainiac1

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2019, 09:14:28 AM »
When I learned how to use the wheel, I did not use the magnetic scales much at all.  We would ensure that the wheel scale was dead on for the measurement that it showed (1" on the scale would produce a 1" board).  The wheel scale moves the head 2" for each revolution.  The inch marks and half inch marks on the wheel are longer than the others and divide the wheel into fourths so If you want to open at 10 1/2" (figuring 1/8" kerf) to saw 2" slabs and have a 2" on the bottom you know that 10 1/2" will be at the 3 or 9 position on the wheel if I remember correctly.  It has been several months since I have used one.

Once you get the hang of it and the mill is set up just right you can name your mill consistent and predictable sawmill.

Where at in Florida are you?  
panhandle of FL...LA they call it for "Lower Alabama" :)

Offline YellowHammer

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #12 on: June 09, 2019, 09:38:05 AM »
It will be easier and eliminates variable if you dont continue the cut through the cant for this experiment, simply bring the running band to the leading edge and score it, then back out, make your drop, score it again, etc.  then turn everything off and get a ruler and start measuring.  I think you will find the gear drop system is very accurate.

If you continue to saw out the cant, then you introduce lots more variables and at this point, trying to get confidence in the system, its best not to bring them into the mix.  

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Offline WV Sawmiller

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #13 on: June 09, 2019, 11:12:19 AM »
   Which part of the panhandle? I grew up in Escambia Co. about 40 miles north of Pensacola and about 5 miles below the Ala line. We've got some other FF members in/near that area.
Howard Green
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Offline PC-Urban-Sawyer

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #14 on: June 09, 2019, 03:07:18 PM »
I'm in Panama City (or what's left of it after Hurricane Michael...)

Herb

Offline Barney67

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #15 on: June 10, 2019, 02:41:36 PM »
I'm in Baker. ;D

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Offline gdaddy01

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #16 on: June 10, 2019, 09:30:03 PM »
I am in Altha , Marianna . not much left up here either . maybe never get it all cleaned up , but we will do all we can .

Offline offrink

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #17 on: June 16, 2019, 10:22:48 PM »
I made my own gauge. A magnetic strip that is white on one side. I measured the width I wanted, including the kerf, and kept that measurement down the strip. I have strips for finished 1, 1 1/2, 2, and 3 boards. Easy to switch and makes counting clicks a non issue. 

Offline WDH

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #18 on: June 17, 2019, 07:49:26 AM »
I got pretty good with the wheel on the LT15. 
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Offline sideburnz

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Re: I'm gonna name my mill "Thick-N-Thin Lumber"
« Reply #19 on: June 18, 2019, 10:20:15 AM »
I got an LT15  few months ago so I'm pretty green too, and I had some of the same struggles.  Here's what's been helping me:

1:  Even though my mill was new, I wasn't the one who assembled it so I started from scratch and went through the whole alignment procedure in the manual.  I found a few things that were a bit off, and that helped some.  Given your mill is 5 years old, and it's also been moved I think this would be a good place to start.  It helped me get to know the mill a lot better too.

2: I started flipping my cant 180 degrees with each cut, and paying close attention to keeping the center of the log in the center of the cant.  This is a bit more work, but has helped my boards come out much flatter.

3: Use sharp blades.  I still have a hard time telling when my blades are getting too dull, but I've started taking a "when in doubt change the blade" approach. Every time I put on a new blade I can't believe how much better my mill cuts.

4: Cut a bunch of wood you're not counting on for a project.  I just started cutting a bunch of 2x4s for practice.  The practice helped a lot, and pretty soon I was getting a lot of nice boards.  Everyone can find a use for 2x4s sooner or later.  Use the bad ones where you can get away with it, and firewood you don't have to split!

5:  I had to get over the fact that some trees just don't want to be boards.  If I'm cutting a cant and every board is coming off banana shaped I stop and move on to the next log.

Hope a little perspective from someone almost as new as you helps!

Matt
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