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Author Topic: Swingblade question  (Read 9443 times)

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Offline getoverit

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Swingblade question
« on: March 21, 2006, 09:27:31 PM »
I have been cutting some rather small logs (12" to 18") with my Peterson, and have been having a heck of a time with dogging the logs down so that they dont move. Moving logs can ruin your day >:(

I was talking to someone about the issue I am having, and they suggested stacking the logs in a pyramid and then cutting them one at a time. They say by stacking them like this, they all tend to keep the one next to it still.

Has anybody here cut logs like this and if so, do you have any pictures and tips on how to do it?
I'm a lumberjack and I'm ok, I work all night and sleep all day

Offline Captain

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #1 on: March 21, 2006, 09:34:18 PM »
Don't do it, Ken.  There is just not enough holding them.

Unless the logs are abnormally grotesque, with lots of bumps and swells, I don't have any difficulty with just using wood skids with square edged notches.  The notches must be deep enough to just catch the log with the edges. 

If you logs are moving, there is not enough points holding them down, your notches are too shallow, you're sawing too fast, there could be lots of reasons.  Many here on this forum have witnessed me sawing a slab down to nothing with no movement, but it takes a careful setup and a bit of caution when the log is almost gone.

I've got a set of Peterson log dogs, I've never used them...even on 8-10" logs.  Certainly not on anything 12-18"

Captain

Offline getoverit

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #2 on: March 21, 2006, 09:51:09 PM »
I've got to admit that I wasn't using the square notches, but had cut some "V" notches.... those DEFINITELY did NOT work.

I guess I made matters worse, because I flipped over the 4x6 that had the V notches in them and then cut square notches in them. The square notches did hold better. The problem I had then was that the 4x6 broke in half right where the notch was..... guess I made the notch too deep?

anyway, the problem I have is when the log gets to about this shape:



All of the weight is then on the right hand side of the log, throwing the center of gravity off to that side, and the log wants to roll over that way. I'm going to cut myself another 4x6 (or maybe a 6x6 this time) tomorrow, and then try the square notches again.  I have been cutting these logs 3 at a time (one beside the other) and when one log moves, it ALWAYS bumps into the next log.... this causes all of the horizontal edges to be off :(

I'm afraid of metal dogs right now since my spare blade is out to get retipped.... so I'm just looking for all possible ways to keep small logs from moving.. thanks Captain ! you confirmed the square notch !
I'm a lumberjack and I'm ok, I work all night and sleep all day

Offline Captain

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #3 on: March 21, 2006, 10:15:16 PM »
V notches do NOT work.  Not a positive hold on the edge of the bark.

Also, make sure your square notches are wide enough...too narrow equals the tipping issue.  There is no "standard" size notch.  I use 2 sizes mostly, approx 5" and 7".

You're also going to run into more tipping if you are sawing a lot of boards vertically in the middle of the log.  If you saw your logs horizontally, they will never tip from being heavy on the right side.  Sawing vertically is certainly appealing on the ATS to keep from running back for horizontal adjustments.  It would help tp take more off the top of the log before beginning the vertical course, and taking narrower boards in the vertical course when flat sawing.

Captain

Offline Jeff Meyer

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #4 on: March 21, 2006, 10:20:36 PM »
I agree with the Captin, cut your boards off horizontally.  If they were bigger trees then your grain might matter.  But since they are small trees you will get the same grain pattern either way.  One thing I do to hold small trees is to pre cut small wedges out of wood and hammer them into the gap on the bottom of the tree and nail the back side down low.  I also use a lot of plastic wedges to hold my trees from moving.  Hope that help.

Jeff

Offline getoverit

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #5 on: March 21, 2006, 11:28:11 PM »
One thing I have done that I am having some success with is to cut all of the vertical cuts in the log (I'm cutting 1x6's) so that the log has all 1" boards standing on edge, and then when they are all cut, flipping the blade to horizontal and make just one horizontal cut. When you get to the end of the horizontal cut, it takes a while to offbear all of the boards, but the log doesnt roll and the remaining log is still on the right plane if you want to mill it further.

I have thought about making all of the horizontal cuts this way, but it is much easier and more uniform to make the vertical cuts first.

I'll make me another 6x6 tomorrow and try the square notch again. Maybe with the extra width of the log bunk, it will also help to hold things still.
I'm a lumberjack and I'm ok, I work all night and sleep all day

Offline TN_man

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #6 on: March 22, 2006, 03:14:33 AM »
Getoverit,
Definitely make yourself several different square notch-sized bunks. Like Captain we use mostly 5" and 7" notches but also have some that are 9" and 12"( for those really big logs-40"+logs). We have made some bunks where we have some 7" notches on one side and 5" notches on the other.  Of course that does not allow you to make them with ramps built in, but it keeps you from having to haul a bunch of different bunks around with you.
Hope this helps.
WM LT-20 solar-kiln Case 885 4x4 w/ front end loader  80 acre farm  little time or money

Offline Captain

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #7 on: March 22, 2006, 06:17:03 AM »
Ken, use an 8x8.  It works better.

Captain

Offline doublecut

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #8 on: March 22, 2006, 12:14:28 PM »
Or you could purchase the D&L Dogging system and fix the problem for good.
Have pics if you like .
doublecut

Offline Fla._Deadheader

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #9 on: March 22, 2006, 01:04:31 PM »

 Lindsay, post the pics ??
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Offline doublecut

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #10 on: March 22, 2006, 02:08:10 PM »
will do
doublecut

Offline getoverit

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #11 on: March 22, 2006, 11:28:21 PM »
Somebody called me last night with a free log offer (about 20 logs), so I went and got them today...all pine

I cut one of the logs into 6x6's and have it ready to notch when I can get a chance to. I like the idea of having one size notch on one side and another size on the other.

Had another call this afternoon to go get more free logs  I love it !!

Lindsay, I would love to see what you have for dogs.
I'm a lumberjack and I'm ok, I work all night and sleep all day

Offline getoverit

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #12 on: April 02, 2006, 11:34:48 PM »
Just wanted to update this post so that everyone could see that there is a solution.

I took captain's advice and cut myself a couple of 6x6 pine cants that are 12' long and then placed these on top of 4x6's laying on their side. The 4x6's are running parallel to the saw rails, and the 6x6's are running perpandiucular to it.

Then I used the mill to cut out some 5" square faced notches into the top of the 6x6. I have been able to shave the logs right down to the bark without movement using this setup. I have also kept using the method of cutting all of the vertical cuts on the last layer before swinging to the horizontal to cut them all off. This eliminates the need for the log to roll out of the notches and keeps the log very steady during the cuts (even the last horizontal one).

because the cants are 12' long, I can stage another log onto them outside of the rails. This helps speed up the milling process because I move 2 logs or more at once and they roll really easily into the cutting area on the 6x6's

I had to take the small wheels off of the posts on the right hand side of the mill though. They kept hitting the 6x6's when I got down to the last bit of the log. These wheels are meant to help roll the milling head around when you are transporting it and arent needed when milling. They easily re-attach with a couple of bolts when needed.

Many thanks for all of the good advice on this issue ! My problems are now solved !
I'm a lumberjack and I'm ok, I work all night and sleep all day

Offline Bob Smalser

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #13 on: April 03, 2006, 03:16:23 PM »
Make sure nothing else is wrong in your blade alignment or sharpening procedures.  I stopped chainsawing notches into my bearers several years ago because the sawing forces on my Lucas just aren't that great and I don't find I need them.   I just kick in 4 wedges  on single logs and leave a healthy ridge in the last 8" of log.  On small logs like yours, I load the mill three at a time, lining all three up parallel using wedges as necessary and insuring they touch each other so each benefits from the other's weight.
Bob

Offline HORSELOGGER

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #14 on: April 03, 2006, 08:33:42 PM »
Get a set of real dogs and be done with it. :P
Heritage Horselogging & Lumber Co.
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Offline woodsteach

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #15 on: April 04, 2006, 04:20:25 PM »
As I own a brand X with log dogs I don't have that problem so I'd suggest getting a set of log dogs (which ever brand).  I've milled a few small logs 6" x 6' long, and I've milled lots (hundreds) larger logs 30" x 8' and the dogs worked very well.  My only complaint is on cottonwoods with their large bark sometimes I have to axe out the bark where the dogs bite!

Paul
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Offline Bob Smalser

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #16 on: April 04, 2006, 07:49:56 PM »
These dogs made of metal?

If so, I personally wouldn't use them with a swing blade like mine, which reaches 3" or so beneath the line of cut during the swing.  I have enuf problems avoiding the crossbars laying on the ground at the mill ends, let alone a hunk of iron where my wooden wedges usually go.  I saw thru those wedges all the time getting out the last board.

Bob

Offline HORSELOGGER

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #17 on: April 04, 2006, 08:53:17 PM »
If you used em once, you would never go back. The saw can easily be set up to avoid hitting them,,, sheesh all mills use metal dogs ??? The brand x dogs are good and bite hard... they appear to be a knock off of the D&L dogs.
Heritage Horselogging & Lumber Co.
"Surgical removal of standing timber, Leaving a Heritage of timber for tommorow. "

Offline getoverit

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #18 on: April 04, 2006, 09:37:54 PM »
Actually, I have a set of dogs, but wont use them for the very same reason that Bob mentioned. Those dogs are made by JPGreen, and are gripperdogs. They really do hold well, but I'm afraid of using them because they are metal. He is sending me a set of dogs that are made of composite and swingblade friendly to try out. I hope to have some good success with those soon. For now, the square notches in the 6x6 bunks are working really well for me.
I'm a lumberjack and I'm ok, I work all night and sleep all day

Offline Bob Smalser

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Re: Swingblade question
« Reply #19 on: April 04, 2006, 09:55:47 PM »
Oh...I served my time on circle mills with carriages and dogs.

What I'm saying is that today I don't bother with notches in the bearers, let alone iron dogs I have to fuss with and worry about hitting.  The sawing forces of of that 22", 5-tip Lucas blade are so low I don't find log movement a problem when using just wanes as wedges...even with small logs.

I'd make sure my new mill was in tune before spending money I might not have to.

Bob


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