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Author Topic: American Bandsawmill?????  (Read 6369 times)

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Offline craigc90

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American Bandsawmill?????
« on: March 29, 2002, 05:34:09 PM »
 >: >:( >:((
    All this talk about brands of mills gets me wound up.My
brother bought an American Bandsawmill Made in Zanesville Ohio. He bought it about 6 months ago didn't use it but one time befor winter cut one little log. Couple weeks ago try to cut with has a large order to cut bigger than he should be taking on. Starts out both batteries dead. No big deal.
charge batteries and start to cut solenoid for hydraulic log loader sticks on and runs the battery dead again.Replaced solenoid recharged battery. Cut 3 logs squareing pins are not square. mill is also cuttings boards in an arch because its not rigid enough and the tracks bow if the wheels are touching the ground. The hydraulic log turner broke a bearing first time it was used. learning to deal with all the breakdowns and crooked cuts and so on. The electric motor that raises and lowers the saw head quits working .Still moving on trying to cut the order and the wheels the mill ride on keep plugging up with sawdust and throws the mill out of wack even more.For the price that was paid for this machine they could have bought a decent woodmizer. Now that is what he is looking into. He wanted to buy something more local thinking he would get better service. Are all of these common problems of all mills or is this thing junk.Is there anyone on this board that has had any dealings with American Bandsawmills???
Sorry for the rant I am starting to take this personell.

Offline woodman

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #1 on: March 29, 2002, 06:49:17 PM »
   Never had anything like that happin to me, tell him to go get a WM and all his trubles are over. 8) 8) 8)
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Offline Frank_Pender

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #2 on: March 29, 2002, 07:25:10 PM »
He might seriously consider a Mobile Dimension Sawmill, especially if he is cutting dimensional lumber for building.  I cut a log the other day, Douglas Fir, that had a Scribner Log Scale of 20  board feet and cut two 3" x 5" boards and got 35bdft and still had a 11/2" x 31/2" left, Which gave me a total of 41.125bdft.   8) 8)
Frank Pender

Offline Bibbyman

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #3 on: March 29, 2002, 07:30:10 PM »
Have you made any contact or asked for help from American Bandsawmill?   Batteries, solenoids, bearings, etc. are like humans, prone to failure at any time.  Ive bought new electrical components only to find out that they were no good right out of the box.

Ive seen some of the light sawmills and their frames are apparently only intended to guide the sawhead not support the weight of the log and thus require a lot of blocking and leveling.
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Offline craigc90

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #4 on: March 29, 2002, 07:50:36 PM »
 The batteries and solenoid I took care of they sent him a new bearing for the log roller .I have to put it in .This place is just over an hour from the house. They are aware of all the problems you would think they would offer to come fix the thing instead of sending parts in the mail. You spend 15 grand at least they could do is make a service call under warranty.I may be expecting more than I should. I just thought when you buy from the little guy it would be more
customer friendly.

Offline Bud Man

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #5 on: March 29, 2002, 08:36:15 PM »
I don't blame you for wanting to take It personally !!  >:( Sounds like It should have come with a bottle of aspirin  >:(!  What kind of warranty did It come with ? Read It carefully !!  :P Did It come with a users manual ? Read It carefully !!  :P Did It come with any satisfaction guaranteed warranty ? :P   Try honey first then get tuff with threat of BBB if no response, usually if there worth a hoot, a company will try to maintain a level of credibility if they intend to stay in business !!  A warranty isn't very comforting  if you have to use It every time you use the product.  I always said a warranty usually protects the company that issues the warranty , and not the purchaser of the product !!  Research prior to purchasing a product and talking to happy customers is very important, especially a product that cost $15,000 or more !!   All of this is water down the creek at this point, but if all else fails and if you determine that you didn't overdo on the machine's limits or capabilities, I believe I'd be inclined to use an attorney's level of influence and seek some relief !! Sometimes personal letters and phone calls are shrugged off by a company and an individual needs a little umph that an attorney can give !!   I hope things work out and a happy outcome can be reached !!    " Good Luck "
The groves were God's first temples.. " A Forest Hymn"  by.. William Cullen Bryant

Offline Ron Wenrich

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2002, 03:11:24 AM »
I'll start this off with saying I don't know much about these little band mills.  I've only been around a few of them and I run a commercial circle mill.

Was the equipment left out in the weather?  Moisture can cause all sorts of problems from mechanical to electrical.

Are you sure you leveled the mill correctly?  If you don't get it leveled right, I would expect that could effect the quality of the cut.

We put in a new mill about 5 years ago.  Since then, we have been re-engineering things from hydraulic to electric.  Some was poor engineering, some was the manufacturer trying to save a buck.  

Learning curves can be pretty severe.  It takes several months of cutting to get to know your equipment and how to use it.  How did the mill perform the first time it was used?  What has changed?
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Offline Gordon

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2002, 06:03:40 AM »
Equipment is equipment reguardless and when new some problems will occur, that is why they have a warranty. Now if the company is an hour away why not load her up and take it back for a check up at the factory. That way a tech there could go over it and get things right.

Equipment sitting dormant is worse than running it every day. If not greased up and oil changed before putting it to bed for winter, then come spring troubles will happen. Also if it was sitting outside then x2 the amount of problems.

I understand that your highly upset by the problems, but give the company a fair shake and see what comes of it. Have you asked them to send a tech on site? Some companies have techs they will send out into the field others wont. Don't know unless you ask.

The reason I say the above is that I used to work for a company that did alot of warranty work. One day a week I would be in the field doing service calls on the customers site. So I know first hand what can happen in alot of different situations.

Needless to say a good percentage of it had to do with the customers learning curve and some was just broken. But the more expensive the unit the more bells and whistles, means more stuff to break or tear up. Either from misuse (learning curve)  or just plain broke and some was from poor design that had to be redone on site.

Now for the other side of the stick. Some companies are sell them once companies. Not much customer service. Then there are other companies that the customer is always right and those are the companies that will prosper. Todays customers are much more demanding than a few years ago and companies need to realize this to stay in business for the long haul. Doesn't matter if it's a $10.00 hair dryer or a $300,000 piece of equipment. In the customers eyes if it's broke it needs to be fixed. That is what warranties are for. So lets hope that American Bandmill is the second of the two companies that I described above, the one that the customer comes first.

One last thing you might want to drop them an e-mail about this thread and see what they have to say. Give them a chance to step up to the plate and see what comes of it.

If a customer is happy they will tell 3-4 people and if that same customer is unhappy they will tell 7-10 people. That is what alot of the smaller companies need to realize. Ok time to get off the soap box.

Good luck
Gordon

Offline L. Wakefield

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #8 on: March 30, 2002, 05:41:25 PM »
   I'd mentioned the WM LT-15 a few days ago and got a coupla favorable comments on it. I know if you take any unit of any size you can test it til the straining point comes. I was wondering what that might be for the LT-15. I just saw the video but didn't get a good handle on what kinda load would bend structural members or just be 'too much' for the little cutter. Any comments?  lw
L. Wakefield, owner and operator of the beastly truck Heretik, that refuses to stay between the lines when parking

Offline craigc90

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #9 on: March 30, 2002, 05:52:10 PM »
  I talked to my brother a little bit ago and he told me the guy who built the mill will not return his phone calls. The mill has a 1 year warranty on it. Not worth a dang if you cant keep it running long enough to make any money. My brother is finishing the order on a WM LT40. He says he is in love very nice machine compared to our piece of junk. He is going to buy the WM . We need to get out from under this headach first.  

Offline Tom

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #10 on: March 30, 2002, 07:46:47 PM »
LW,
I have a friend locally with an LT15 and it has been mounted on timbers with tood solid supports and tied down good so that it won't move.  It takes a log of support but the mill wont break when on solid foundation.  The cutter head isn't bothered by anything.  It may not be real fast but it's kinda like that pink battery bunny.  It just keeps on cutting.

craig, Perhaps a overly solid foundation may help your stability problems. Parts breakage is a pain in neck.  Sometimes you can find parts that will run and allow you to get some use out of the mill. It's a shame that the company is losing such a good opportunity to make a good customer.  The ones who have problems will make honestly loyal customers if satified.  I think they can make a more loyal customer than one who has never had a problem because they have tested the system.

I know the LT40 is a good mill, I have one.  I know the company is a good one too, because I have had the opportunity to use their system.
extinct

Offline BRP

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #11 on: March 30, 2002, 08:16:44 PM »
Sounds like your brother will not be happy even if the company fixes the mill and I don't blame him the machine should be able to handle the elements and whatever he wants to saw up.The WM he wants is built for the outdoors and big logs.He wont let this mill sit for a year, it will be to busy throwing sawdust.....

Offline Bibbyman

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #12 on: April 01, 2002, 06:58:05 AM »
I think the frame sections on the Wood-Mizer LT15 are made of 2"x6" or maybe 8" tube steel.  They are made in 5' sections so two people can lift and load them.  While stiffer than some (maybe all) of the small mills,  I don't think it was made to withstand loading of a large log without support at numerous points.

One of the advantages to the WM design is that it can be broken down and stored in about the same space as a small riding lawn mower.  

In it's 11' form,  two men can easily lift the "light end" of the mill and have someone back a PU tailgate under it.  Then the sawhead is cranked forward until it counterbalances into the truck. :o


Here is a picture of a lady that had just bought this mill.  She had been sawing on it off and on for about 3 hours at the farm show.  She was so pleased because she had been using some other brand mill she had to push.  She found the crank system on the WM much easier.  I'd give a dollar to know what she was thinking! 8)
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Offline L. Wakefield

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #13 on: April 01, 2002, 11:33:45 AM »
   Could be me in a few weeks. I'm now at the 'what are you THINKING?!' stage. Gettin closer. Problem is as we are walking through the woods I keep looking at trees and thinking well, THAT one and maybe THAT one- pine with the top busted off, ain't gonna grow back no-how. Must be the company I keep, gettin me to think this way.. :D

  On the topic of tops bustin off..maple will hair out, oak will hair out, cherry will hair out, we were arguing about hemlock- saw some that hadn't but one that looked like it had- but if you bust the top off a white pine, it won't come back by sprouting new branches below the break, will it? We got a good lesson in all of this from the ice storm and then the next summer's windstorm.   lw
L. Wakefield, owner and operator of the beastly truck Heretik, that refuses to stay between the lines when parking

Offline Bibbyman

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #14 on: April 01, 2002, 12:33:52 PM »
I know what you mean LW.  We have 215 acres - most is cut over hardwood forest.  We are trying to remove the damaged, diseased, deformed and downright dead trees to upgrade the stand. I ruin more opportunities while I'm deer hunting in the fall buy looking at the tops of the trees for damage or disease and then seeing the discouraging white flags of deer running off ahead of me. :o
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Offline Ron Wenrich

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #15 on: April 01, 2002, 03:28:03 PM »
LW

On white pine, you may have a lateral branch that will become a leader.  A lot would depend how much of the top is broken off.  Too far down and it won't happen.

You will see lateral branches become terminals when hit with white pine weevil.  But, this always puts a crook in the tree.

I would agree that a busted top should probably be removed, unless you want it to become a seed source.
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Offline Kevin

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #16 on: April 01, 2002, 06:45:39 PM »
I`m happy with my LT-15.
I put boards under the supports and I haven`t had any problems but I have the trailer package so it`s never really in one place long enough to get into trouble.
I`m having a set of skis made for it this week so I can get it back into the boonies next weekend.

Offline woodman

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #17 on: April 01, 2002, 06:56:07 PM »
  I'll be looking for the photo. Are you going to leave the tires on?
Jim Cripanuk

Offline Jeff

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #18 on: April 02, 2002, 03:50:15 AM »
Thats what I was wondering. Are they going to be like you see for the jump planes up there, where the ski mounts and under the Tire?
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Offline Kevin

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Re: American Bandsawmill?????
« Reply #19 on: April 02, 2002, 04:26:24 AM »
That`s what I`m considering because I need the mill this weekend and don`t have much time to design anything different.
There will most likely be a ski under each tire and another on the trailer tongue to keep the weight off the snow machine.
I plan on jacking the axle and slipping the skis under the tires then drop the wheels on the skis (about a two minute job).
I`ll pick the skis up today and have a welder go to work on them.


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