The Forestry Forum

General Forestry => Sawmills and Milling => Topic started by: Matthieu on March 08, 2005, 06:37:37 PM

Title: Peterson sawmill
Post by: Matthieu on March 08, 2005, 06:37:37 PM
I've been looking at the peterson mills on the web...I like!! THe idea of easy quartersawing and off the mill- dimensionned lumber are very attractive. I'm looking for additionnal information on the specs of the 8" sawmill, so if you veteran swing-millers can answer a few questions I have, maybe I'll be closer to making a decision. Here we go:

What is the overall blade diameter?
What is the kerf thickness?
Any  interchangeable thin kerf blade option available?
How many teeth per blade?
Are there any canadian disrtibuters of peterson saws and/or parts?

THank you very much for all your help,
Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: HORSELOGGER on March 08, 2005, 06:50:24 PM
Hi Matthieu,... In order

1...21 inches

2...a fat 3/16"

3... They/re working on a 1/8" micro kerf, max cut 6"

4...8 is standard, others are available

5...not any more, but factory direct or Captain, from this forum can fix ya straight up ;)
Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: sigidi on March 08, 2005, 06:55:51 PM
I know you'll be getting answers to this real soon, but you may get some sooner if you PM Captain...

Go to the top of th epage, click "members map", look for "Captain" listed for the states... oh ya can't he hasn't placed himself. Ok then look for 'Sawmillsi' under Australia.... nope ya cant' he ain't there, Ok what about 'NZJake' in New Zealand... no? Geese OK now I got it click on 'Wife' in New Zealand.

Ah crikey none of that works anyways you just get to see where they live - so much for my help.

Ok go to search, click advanced search, type captain in the 'by member box' ah geese that's not working either... hang on

Go here;u=368
then go to the bottom of the page and click 'send this member a personal message' then you will get him hopefully much quicker than it took me to do this!!!!!!!!!

Well Horselogger has beeten me to it due to my lack of searching ability :D ;)
Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: Furby on March 08, 2005, 09:02:15 PM
Just scroll down to the bottom of the main index and click on the:
Members List
Searchable list of all registered members. ;)
Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: Captain on March 08, 2005, 09:12:21 PM
Well you all beat me :D

Horselogger (one of the Forestry Forum's most prominent Peterson owners himself) did a fine job answering your initial questions.  The microkerf blade is in fact available, and yes it cuts a 1/8" kerf at a maximum of 6" depth of cut on an 8" OR 10" mill.  It is also like getting a 1/3 HP boost as well!!

Peterson sells factory direct to the United States and Canada.  I am more of a helping hand here in North America with mill deliveries, training, parts and the rare warranty issue.  Notice my name does NOT come up in special colors like the sponsors do on the entrance page.

Surely you have more questions Matthieu???  We're all ears smiley_thumbsup


BTW Sigidi, thanks for pointing out my geography problem, I fixed it :)
Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: sawmillsi on March 09, 2005, 04:20:11 AM

Thanks for the help - I have just updated it.

Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: maple flats on March 09, 2005, 05:54:22 AM
As a newer Peterson owner I would like to make a few observations. With a Peterson you do have the 3/16 kerf but on the flip side you usually make less slab when practiced up which makes more lumber than the extra sawdust looses. The fact that you can saw a 5' log without even having to move the log in most cases can be a plus, and an optional oversized diameter is available as I understand but I do not see why except for those in redwood country. The std mill also cuts 20' long and can be added to tor HUGE if needed by getting added track. Someplace I saw that one guy cuts 66' long (I can't lift one that big) Another point is portability. I saw alone and can move the mill and set up around a log too big to move in about 20-30 minutes and with a second man you could do it faster, my hardest part setting alone is carrying the tracks without disassembling. If they do need to be disassembled add about 10 minutes to the time. Your point about getting dementional lumber off the mill is good. One man can even load the mill on a truck or trailer quickly to move to another site.
Dealing with the folks at Peterson is GREAT. THey bend over to make the customer happy. Can't say I've dealt with many companies like that (except Dillon reloading equipment [ammunition]) Any problems that I've ever had from some very minor damage in transit to small parts they are very quick and thurough.  Keeping the blade sharp is a breeze, it comes with a sharpener that only takes about 3 minutes to use for the 8 teeth. My mill came with a 6 tooth and an 8 tooth (6 for hardwood) and they also offer one they call a smooth cut but haven't seen one yet. The 8 tooth cuts quite smooth as it is. And the mill is real fun to use. I have not yet done any oversize cuts but will as soon as I can because that also looks quite easy To get up to an 8 x 16 off an 8" mill. The size designation is single pass max cut on the mill.
Sure think you wouldn't go wrong with a peterson. I helped another guy mill some spruce last year with his band mill and saw wavy lumber, sharpening problems, and lumber that didn't stay the same dimension thruout. That was my reason to buy a Peterson and glad I did His mill would drift at every knot, Petersons don't 8) 8) 8) 8) 8)
Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: woodsteach on March 09, 2005, 01:41:10 PM
I've been looking at the Peterson mills and I am probably looking at the entry level mill (I can't remember the name).  What add-on's/extras would you folks recommend?  I am mainly looking for personal use making what ever from large white oaks and walnut.  Then if things go as planned part time custom milling.

Would you add track length?
Which engine and hp?
Blade dia?
Sidding attachment?  Is there one?

Thank you
Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: DanG on March 09, 2005, 02:35:25 PM
Welcome to the Forum, Woodsteach! :)  I had a chance to get up close and personal with the Peterson machines at Moultrie, last Oct.  I'm really impressed with the equipment and the people!

I can't think of any reason the extra track length could be a handicap.  You can still saw short stuff on a long mill.

I ain't heard anybody griping about having too much horsepower.

Same deal with the blade.

I'd say get everything as big as you can afford.
Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: woodsteach on March 09, 2005, 03:11:47 PM
Thanks, DanG.  I'll tell the Boss (wife).   "More Power" 

I've watched the peterson video and have yet to see it 'live'.  So with a 8" blade, the biggest 2x material would be a 2x6 unless you double cut?  Or am I missing something? 

Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: Fla._Deadheader on March 09, 2005, 03:14:43 PM

  Unless yer using the "new thin kerf" blade, an 8" blade will cut 8".
Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: Ianab on March 09, 2005, 03:34:01 PM
With a standard 8" blade you can cut an 8x8 easy, or up to 8x16 with a little bit of mucking around (double cutting).  I also like to make one full size live edge slab out of any good log. Also easy enough to do by flipping over the 3/4 sawed log and cutting from the other side leaving a 2 or 3 inch thick slab.
More power is good, just cuts faster. The lower power engines will do the same cuts, but you will have to feed slower. I believe the 8" mill also cuts faster than the 10", so unless you need the extra size boards I'd go with the 8".
The track extensions are just that, bolt on extensions. You can bolt them on ( or not ) each time you set the mill up. So if you are going out to cut 8-12ft logs you need not even take them. I'd say only get them if you expect to come want to cut overlength stuff. Easy enough to add extensions later if you find you do need them.


Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: Matthieu on March 09, 2005, 06:18:38 PM
Thanks for the wealth of information lads, sure is appreciated.

Is there a reason for so few teeth, compared to circular mills (or even tablesams) ?

Thank you much,
Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: Ianab on March 09, 2005, 06:39:29 PM
My take on the number of teeth...

The circle mills are most efficient when they are cutting large chips out of the kerf. The sawdust produced isn't actually dust, more chips and shavings. Imagine the tooth like a small chisel cutting the wood out. To run a tooth like that takes 2 or 3 hp - per tooth - to keep it cutting efficiently. So 8 x 3   = 24 hp.  My old Peterson is powered by a big chainsaw motor and uses a 4 tooth blade - 4 teeth x 2 hp = 8hp engine. Scaled up to a big circle saw 40 teeth take 100 hp to drive it.
Of course the larger teeth will make a coarser cut, but you are rough sawing at this point. Speed and a straight cut are more important than a planed finish.


Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: maple flats on March 09, 2005, 06:42:15 PM
Horse power. The more teeth the more horse power you need. I use an 8" ATS with a 20 horse engine and can saw fairly fast. My perspective on horsepower is that if you have extra you might not notice a slowdown in cutting rate as soon and then might power your way to a cooked blade.  If you notice a slowdown, stop and resharpen, it only takes about 3 minutes using the sharpener included with the mill and is done with the blade still on the mill. If a blade were to heat up you could lose the temper and need to repair (called retensioning) or replace. I am very satisfied with the cut rate at 20 hp, it cuts well and you need little push to move the carriage in either direction even at the full 8" cut with a sharp blade.  
I really like my Petersom sawmill! 8) 8)
Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: Tom on March 09, 2005, 06:43:36 PM
There is a fellow that has a used Peterson for sale on the Peterson "used mills" part of their site that advertises it is run by a 100 horsepower diesel.  Must be one bi-i-i-ig blade and one bi-i-i-ig dude. :D :D
Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: Ianab on March 09, 2005, 06:52:37 PM
There is a fellow that has a used Peterson for sale on the Peterson "used mills" part of their site that advertises it is run by a 100 horsepower diesel.  Must be one bi-i-i-ig blade and one bi-i-i-ig dude. :D :D

I think you will find thats a hydralic powered mill with a powerpack instead of running it of a large tractor's hydralics. He's probably using about 20 or 30 hp at the blade... and it's not quite as portable as the new ones  :D
Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: Tom on March 09, 2005, 06:56:38 PM
 If that is a suped up version of yours then tha's gotta be one big Kiwi :D
Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: Captain on March 10, 2005, 07:14:33 AM
Welcome to you also, Woodsteach.  Hope to have you in the Peterson family soon.

For cutting white oak, you will have more enjoyment with more horsepower.  The smaller engines will make the cuts, the larger engine will make the cuts faster.  You can decide, but there is only about $600 difference between the 27hp amd the 20hp engines.

Blade size?  Ian is correct, when making an 8" cut, the 8" mills are faster and easier to push than the 10" mills.  Why?? The kerf is slightly larger on the 10" mill due to the slightly larger kerf requirement/plate thickness, and the fact that there is physically more blade in the log making the same cut...more possibility of side/plate friction.

In the harder woods, the blade tooth configuraion is usually reduced. as an example on my 8" mill, I use a 8 tooth blade most of the time.  There is not much room on the blade for the gullet geometry to put any more teeth on.  As Ian said, you need to remove the material that is cut.  When cutting harder species like white oak, I use a 6 tooth blade to keep the engine rpm up, and the blade in optimal RPM range.  When dull, and/or pushing too hard, the blade speed reduces and loses its proper shape, which can lead to a blade that cuts with lead in one direction or another.  It is pretty hard to get to this stage, you obviously have to do something wrong to get there :)

Would I buy extensions??  If I have a WPF, absolutely.  They are so easy to add up to your desired length.  Why?  The tracks do not move.  When setting up with extra track length, I usually set my WPF up Lo-Lo (both tracks in the low position) .  With an ATS, extra long track lengths require a seperate raising mechanism linked in series.  Short extensions are included with the mill to allow it to cut 20 foot logs, like the WPF, as delivered.

There is a beveled siding attachment available.  It adds a second set of "stops" when the blade is in the vertical position.  This additional stop, used in alternating cuts with the standard stop, is used to create your siding.  There is a bit of adjustment required on the initial setup to get it at your desired setting, but that is done only once. 

I hope this information helps.  Good luck with the wife!! ;D

Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: woodsteach on March 10, 2005, 09:10:59 AM
Thank you for the info Captain. 
The boss is softening  ;)

Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: Matthieu on March 10, 2005, 07:21:03 PM
Captain, you said you have to keep the RPM up. At what RPM does a 8 '' blade turn?
Title: Re: Peterson sawmill
Post by: Captain on March 10, 2005, 08:04:51 PM
I make a calculation of 1900 RPM or a rim speed of 10450 SFPM