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Author Topic: What are the chances of finding a used trailer package for my mill head?  (Read 1117 times)

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Offline Daren

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I bought a new T.A. Schmid in 2004, just the sawhead and built my own deck. It has worked ok, with some on the fly modifications. I am looking to put the head on a trailer package.

Here is the deal. I wanted a new mill for my first not used because I didn't know anything about sawing and didn't want any "bugs" from a used head to try to figure out. I was just going to saw a few logs set up stationary on a building site for framing and knotty pine paneling, then sell it. Well things changed and I moved it in town and set it up hanging out the door of a 40x40 pole barn and am in the wood business as a small timer. I am now looking for a real deck and trailer package, cause the mill may have to be movable. I am not going portable sawing, just need to move it every once in awhile.

I liked the Schmid set up, but I am frugal (some would say cheap). As much as I like it the trailer package is as much as I spent for the head. Not that it is not worth it, they are very sturdy built units, one of the better on the market I think. I could buy a new deck, but they are in N.Y. and with gas at nearly $3.00 gallon and the fact I do not have time to go fetch it myself (I would send a local on a road trip) I would have $1000 in just getting it. That is what they need to deliver too.

I COULD make my own, but there again I would have time/material in it that would probably equal an already built one if I could find one. And I would be back to making mods as I go along probably, I would rather have something that the kinks have already been worked out. Even if I have to do some repairs that is no problem I am a welder.
My head is a 4 poster that rolls on wheels on angle iron track that is 39" on center of the wheels (they have some adjustment, maybe 3/8" either way)

Any thoughts, suggestions ? You are not going to hurt my feeling by calling me cheap, poor people have poor ways.
Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.

Offline low_48

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I've read about some guys that use a truck frame. It makes for a tall mill, but the axle is already there. That's about as cheap as you will get, but finding the exact width will make it tough. Just an idea to ponder. Don't have a junk school bus sitting behind the shed do you? :)

Offline Left Coast Chris

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I built my own trailer frame and used 8" channel iron for the rails and 6" channel for the cross members.   I then found a mobile home transport service that sells the bent axles, wheels and tires for cheap.   The axle, wheel and tires were $75 and has a 6000# capacity.  The axle is chopped shorter so the bent part is discarded and welded back together in the center.  The deck is so stout that I can bounce sizable logs around and have not bent anything to date.    The steel was the most expensive part.  With the steel and axle, wheels and tires I have a total of about $1000 into it.   If you can buy scrap steel the cost would be greatly reduced.  Food for thought.
Home built cantilever head, 24 HP honda mill, Case 580D, MF 135 and one Squirel Dog Jack Russel Mix -- Crickett

Offline Daren

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Height does concern me, even with the factory trailer. I don't saw long logs...but I like to saw big ones. The Schmid dust shoot (broken blade and rock shoot too) is on the sawyer side, not bad if it is thigh high or below. I am not crazy about it being neck high. I am thinking I need small wheels. I am not going to be roading it down the highway, just moving it periodically, maybe across town.
I was thinking crazy one time and a local farmer moves combine picker heads on a mobile home frame. A buddy and I even hauled him an old trailer to dismantle so he could have the frame. I can get my hands on one pretty easy. I had thought at one time about cutting some off both ends to recenter the axles to shorten the deal, beef it up where needed and put a different hitch on. It would be wide enough to set the head off to one side and make an expanded metal walkway for me, the expanded metal would let the sawdust hit the ground and give me a clean place to walk. I could load from the mill side of the trailer. But I never got any further than thinking about it because of the offloading problems.
Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.


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