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Author Topic: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?  (Read 6569 times)

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Offline Dave Shepard

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4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« on: February 10, 2008, 09:13:36 PM »
I am researching moulders for our sawmill operation. As we saw a lot of pine, and often generate quite a bit of narrower boards, I think we could use a moulder. I am thinking v-groove paneling, t&g, and S4S for the better grades of boards. I have a few questions about how moulders work. On a five head moulder there are two bottom cutter heads. Does one of them act as a jointer? Are there any steps needed before running boards through the moulder, such as straight line rip, jointing, or pre-planing? Ideally, the fewer processes needed, the more viable the operation. Is four heads enough to do this, and are the five and six heads for more complicated mouldings? I have been looking at Logosol, Baker, and Wood Mizer. Thanks.


Dave
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Offline ellmoe

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2008, 07:43:53 AM »
Dave,

    You are correct, the first of two bottom heads act as a jointer. The second head on our moulder takes a little off as a cleanup pass. A small profile could be put on here. We do all that you are thinking of on our machine. I have found that it is better to hit and miss first and then run again to your finished profile. Among other things this prevents the odd thick boards ( or end of a board) from disrupting the production. A moulder with more heads might eliminate this and allow for deeper profiles in one pass.

Mark
Thirty plus years in the sawmill/millwork business. A sore back and arthritic fingers to prove it!

Offline ironstumper

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #2 on: February 11, 2008, 07:48:20 AM »
Ellmoe,
            Is this your moulder...Weining Promat.....and do you reccomend it?.....Doug
Rom 8:19 Can't wait!!

Offline spencerhenry

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #3 on: February 12, 2008, 08:08:17 AM »
more information on your molder please, i too am in the market for one. looking to buy a good used one 5 or 6 head. to do the same things.

Offline ellmoe

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #4 on: February 12, 2008, 09:17:26 PM »
   Yes,it's a Weinig, seems like a profomat 34 E is the model. Funny that the model doesn't stick in my mind. ::) It has been a good machine for us. At this time I am seriously considering purchasing another moulder. This one needs some work (not much maintenance over the 5 + years I've had it) and  I don't want any serious downtime. I might add a head or two, and expand our offerings. I haven't decided whether to keep this one or not. When I bought this machine there were less options than now. Woodmizer and Baker (I think) both offer moulders now (Chinese, I think). I'll probably look at them and another Weinig (German made). We have been successful with this machine and that's always a good recommendation! :)
   Alot of the money you will spend is in the tooling and extra heads. If you make small runs, changing knives is very time consuming. Having extra heads with different profiles already install is VERY helpful. I spent about as much for heads and tooling as I did on the machine. I would do the same again.
Thirty plus years in the sawmill/millwork business. A sore back and arthritic fingers to prove it!

Offline Dave Shepard

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #5 on: February 12, 2008, 10:20:43 PM »
How does the price of the German made machine compare to the others? I would definitely prefer German over Chinese.


Dave
Wood-Mizer LT40HDD51-WR Wireless, Kubota L48, Honda Rincon 650, TJ208 G-S, and a 60"Logrite!

Offline ADAMINMO

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2008, 10:39:10 AM »
The Baker moulders are actually manufactured in Taiwan as well as our planers.The Chinese moulders didn't appeal to us as well as the Taiwanese moulders did.Seemed like the people from Taiwan had more respectable work habits and took pride in their job building these machines.

Offline ARKANSAWYER

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #7 on: February 16, 2008, 11:27:13 AM »

  I got a PH 260 and it has 4 heads.  If you put in a bent board you will get a bent board out of it.  It does not have enough force to straighten it out.  We pre-plane everything so that it does not have any high spots because if you hang a board up in it then you will have to loosen it up and pull it out.  The knives are indexed so it is easy to repeat set ups.  The shims are not hard to but in and it does a good job if you are planning on changing set ups a lot.  The upper and lower blades are a bit hard to adjust till you get used to it.  I wished they had the same set up as my plainer did.  IT is a snap to do it.
  We were running 1 5/8 x6x 12' pine boards through it yesterday and it took 7 hours to run 320 boards with 3 men working.  We wore out a set of side cutters and dulled the top and bottom blades as well as the round over blades in the top to make it look like log siding.  Blade cost would be about $200 but the side cutters had done about 3 times this much work before.  Labor was around $168 so we did not make much profit on this sale.  But if we could not have made the siding then we would never had sold the boards that we did make money on.
ARKANSAWYER

Offline Ironwood

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #8 on: February 16, 2008, 07:35:17 PM »
For those in the market for a moulder I will be selling one for a friend of mine in the near future. He got it at a IRS auction. It is a large commercial unit, fairly late model, weighs about 8000 lbs and I have seen it but do not have the specs on it. I will try to get them. He has it stuffed in a tractor trailer box right now, as soon as we get it out I will be photographing it and listing it. I will keep you guys in the loop.

 


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There is no scarcity of opportunity to make a living at what you love to do, there is only scarcity of resolve to make it happen.- Wayne Dyer

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #9 on: February 17, 2008, 11:41:20 AM »
Well this is a start, it's a Deihl, has at least 4 head (he is getting the manual for me today) 10 hp side motors, 15 hp mains. The arbors can tilt to do unique mouldings. He thinks it is a 1982, comes with frequency converter to run the motors smoother than standard 50 hertz, infeed automated feed hopper, and control panel for electricals, he also has numerous heads for it.  I will try to get it officially listed in the for sale section in the next few days. He needs $9500 for it. more to follow.


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There is no scarcity of opportunity to make a living at what you love to do, there is only scarcity of resolve to make it happen.- Wayne Dyer

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #10 on: February 20, 2008, 11:29:14 AM »
Ok, here you go. Diehl D-8  Serial 77M-3920-3227. With,..........30, yes , that is thirty extra corregated backed heads, this is not just knives but entire heads. and a bunch of extra collets. There is also a HUGE converter and control panel. The machine has original paint and is in really good condition. These are a "push" style moulder known for durability. It is 4 head and 8" x 6". Motors are 220-440. I dont have pictures yet.
 
 He needs $9500 for it.

          Ironwood
There is no scarcity of opportunity to make a living at what you love to do, there is only scarcity of resolve to make it happen.- Wayne Dyer

Offline logwalker

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #11 on: February 20, 2008, 11:35:01 AM »
Hey Reid, Can you elaborate on the converter? Also what is the largest motor size and is this a pickup only sale? Thanks, Joe
Let's all be careful out there tomorrow. Lt40hd, 22' Kenworth Flatbed rollback dump, MM45B Mitsubishi trackhoe, Clark5000lb Forklift, Kubota L2850 tractor

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #12 on: February 21, 2008, 04:23:28 AM »
Logwalker,

 I think 15 is the max, but you will be running two of those, and two 10hp side motors and a 7.5 feed motor. The converter looks like a HUGE 220 motor pullied to a big 440 motor. My friend says it multipplies the Hertz from 50 to ?? to give the motors less peaks and valleys if you are running very fast. Most likely it would not be necessary for an average operation. I do have a 100 hp Rotophase that could run it. As for shipping, half a flat bed, pricey out to you I am sure.

 Ironwood
There is no scarcity of opportunity to make a living at what you love to do, there is only scarcity of resolve to make it happen.- Wayne Dyer

Offline solidwoods

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #13 on: February 24, 2008, 08:08:55 AM »
I purchased a Weinig U17A from IRS $8500.
You can get other 4 side molders for less (from IRS)

You can't have enough heads (depends on what you make).
Get carbide insert for the common profiles like T/G, Amana makes good mid priced heads. 2 heads-T/G insert, 3 wing, 1.5" bore was $600ish.

A knife grinder is a must.  It can cost as much as the molder (except the Viel 6", good for what it does)

Curved/cupped pieces.  Don't put curved/cupped pieces in a molder.  The first bottom head is a jointer, it works just like a woodworking jointer.  If the feed sys. is set to flatten out the cup, then the board will be surfaced by the first head then the boards cup will spring right back.
Same with side bend- The first side head can be setup to cut like a jointer (to straighten the side bend),  If the feed sys. pushes the side bend out , then the side bend won't get jointed out and it will spring right back.

Yes Weinig molders are the best.

You can make a rotary phase converter, very easy, just stick to the rules.
jim
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Offline Okrafarmer

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #14 on: August 01, 2014, 11:41:49 AM »
Reviving the thread--

I am looking into getting or renting a 4, 5, or 6 head moulder as well as other equipment such as a jointer, straight-line rip, etc. If I mainly only want to do flooring and t-n-g, what kinds of operating costs could I expect?

What are the simpler, less expensive, easier to work on brands and models out there?
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Offline venice

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #15 on: August 11, 2014, 02:36:32 PM »
Depending on budget and intended production rate i would try to get a used Weinig - 5 head at least. Built like a tank and easy to operate. One button for each motor, one for the feed, turning knob for the feed rate and one each for size adjustment. Straight forward.

From own experience - stay away from the cheap 4 head entry models as they are usually not powerful enough for serious profiling. Another important piece of equipment would be an accordingly sized dust extraction. Just a little bit undersized rate of airflow takes the fun out of it. Production and quality-wise alike.

Hourly cost of operating in short:

Fixed costs:
Hourly rate for write off - investment/ lease divided through intended time of use in hours
+Tooling
+Rigging*
+Maintenance*

Flexible costs:
+Energy drawn per hour - dont forget to figure in the cost for dust extraction
+Operator

*Rigging and maintenance are flexible costs as well, strictly speaking. But since they are nonproductive, i would figure them into the rate for fixed costs as well. This way these costs are covered without having to much impact on your hourly or per foot rate. This helps in particular with small production runs that need retooling.

Also a good idea is to look into handling equipment like rollers that return the workpiece to the operator. If you are looking for high production rates, efficient handling of material becomes really important.

As for new and cheaper than Weinig, SCMI might be an option as well.

venice

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #16 on: August 11, 2014, 08:33:57 PM »
power and air are what separate me from a Weinig, and I make a fair amount of flooring. A generator is probably next.....
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Offline GeneWengert-WoodDoc

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #17 on: August 12, 2014, 04:51:56 PM »
If you are going to get into flooring, buy a flooring machine, used.  You would feed into it strips of a given width.  Some can also easily do the t&g ends; others require a separate machine.

But before you get a machine, check to see if a flooring mill near you will run your stock through their flooring machine...no capital investment, no power concerns, no sharpening concerns, no dust elimination concerns, and so on.
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Offline red oaks lumber

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #18 on: August 12, 2014, 09:44:13 PM »
so doc, what your saying is get a moulder :D
at the least get a 5 head but, my next one will be a 6 head 12" wide. my first moulder was a weinig, wont be another one in my shop, not because it wasnt good, i cant see spending double to get the same type machine.weinig has sat on their lorals, will the competion has been making huge gains and the market share is showing it.
the experts think i do things wrong
 over 18 million b.f. processed and 7341 happy customers i disagree

Offline venice

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Re: 4, 5, 6 heads, how many is enough?
« Reply #19 on: August 15, 2014, 12:23:55 PM »
@red oak

Yes, a new Weinig is a little on the expensive side. What brand(s) would you look at replacing the Weinig?

venice


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