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Author Topic: Looking for some tribal knowledge  (Read 1064 times)

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Offline mikeh19d

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Looking for some tribal knowledge
« on: August 24, 2021, 01:03:20 PM »
Hey all,

So, my Woodland Mills HM130 Max Woodlander XL arrived in May of 2021 and due to a slew of interruptions I have yet to assemble the mill. It looks like I should be able to start working on it in the next week or two.
 
As part of my preparations, I'm looking into adding a few "nice to haves" and incorporate them into the assembly process and keep me from reinventing the wheel I thought I would ask a few questions to help me in the decision process.
 
To all those sawyers who have modified/improved the functionality of your mill by adding power feed, what type of motor are you using to move the sawhead?
 
Are you using one or two motors to move the carriage up and down the track?

If you are using only one motor, how is the performance and reliability of the motor?
 
Do you think there is any twist to carriage while it moves down the track?

I know the travel can be controlled by a rheostat to throttle the amount of force generated by the motor and the possibility of carriage twist. If you added a second motor to the opposite side, do you think it would improve performance and extend the life of the first motor or do you think itís an overkill and unnecessary? Iím sure Iíll think of a dozen more questions once I post this but I need to start somewhere. 

Thank you.

Offline kelLOGg

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Re: Looking for some tribal knowledge
« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2021, 04:32:01 PM »
I use a wheel chair motor 24 vdc and a reversible speed controller. It draws about 10 amps from 2 car batteries. Has worked well for 15 years now. It drives both sides of the saw carriage via 2 chains. More details in my gallery or pm me if you like.
Cook's MP-32, 20HP, 20' (modified w/ power feed, up/down, loader/turner)
DH kiln, CatClaw, setter, tandem trailer, log arch, tractor, thumb tacks

Offline fluidpowerpro

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Re: Looking for some tribal knowledge
« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2021, 05:01:48 PM »
I paln to also add power feed to mine someday and plan to pull it from both sides like kelLOG does. Just watched a video yesterday on the Cooks web site and in it he talks about the importance of pulling both sides. It keeps the teeth of the blade engaged in the wood the way they were intended to work. If the saw were to cock a little on the track, the teeth arent all engaged and at a different angle.
Change is hard....
Especially when a jar full falls off the top shelf and hits the top of your head!

Offline Southside

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Re: Looking for some tribal knowledge
« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2021, 08:51:40 PM »
If your sawhead were to get off at such an angle that it impacted the actual cutting then I think it would bind up.  Woodmizers pull from one side.  
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Offline KenMac

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Re: Looking for some tribal knowledge
« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2021, 09:50:23 PM »
I think the main reason for the mill head to be pulled from both sides if it has 4 posts is to keep it pulling straight down the track. Occasionally my AC36 will jump a link on the back side but it still cuts. It does not pull as smoothly or as easily as it does pulling straight. Quality of cut is not affected when it jumps a link.
Cook's AC3667t, Cat Claw sharpener, Dual tooth setter, and Band Roller, Kubota B26 TLB

Offline Iwawoodwork

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Re: Looking for some tribal knowledge
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2021, 10:42:57 PM »
My mighty mite mill uses hydraulics. Probably a a power steering pump like is on my 97 dodge dually  or some earlier GM products running off the mill motor via belt and pully would work. the mighty mite has a 3 grove v belt pully on the crank shaft, two for the blade and 1 for the hyd pump. The mill has a hyd cylinder head lift but that could be changed to a hyd motor and chain drive for head lift and there is a hyd motor mounted at the base of the sawmill carriage on one side that a #40 chain serpentines over, works great. so another option.

Offline kelLOGg

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Re: Looking for some tribal knowledge
« Reply #6 on: August 25, 2021, 05:54:12 AM »
I bought my mill before Cooks offered head drive and lift so I talked to Tim Cook about making my own. Concerning saw head drive I told him I was going to drive from one side and he said to design it so that a 2nd chain could be added if necessary because on a one-sided drive the non-driven side could lag and the play "catch up". (I guess there is lateral play in the carriage wheels). He was exactly right so I added a 2nd chain and the pull is very smooth. That was about 15 years ago and all is still well. I think the later MP32 models drive from one side but owners of such should be consulted on this. Like Gere Flewelling.
Cook's MP-32, 20HP, 20' (modified w/ power feed, up/down, loader/turner)
DH kiln, CatClaw, setter, tandem trailer, log arch, tractor, thumb tacks

Offline mikeh19d

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Re: Looking for some tribal knowledge
« Reply #7 on: August 25, 2021, 02:39:36 PM »
I paln to also add power feed to mine someday and plan to pull it from both sides like kelLOG does. Just watched a video yesterday on the Cooks web site and in it he talks about the importance of pulling both sides. It keeps the teeth of the blade engaged in the wood the way they were intended to work. If the saw were to cock a little on the track, the teeth arent all engaged and at a different angle.
Thanks for tip. I'll make my way over to Cook's and take a look at that video. Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions.

Offline John1946

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Re: Looking for some tribal knowledge
« Reply #8 on: September 12, 2021, 11:26:22 AM »
I use one wheelchair motor and pull from one side only( the side the blade enters log). Use electronic speed and reversing control, it uses light duty pots and switches to control  higher currents. Use 22 volt dc motor but only use 12 volt battery, plenty of speed and torque. No pulling issues from carriage. I was concerned with carriage raised full up, with the balance, being the drive pulls from the bottom of carriage. Rectified this by running cam followers on carriage that ride against the lower track lip on my mill. See photo. 

 

  

Offline kelLOGg

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Re: Looking for some tribal knowledge
« Reply #9 on: September 12, 2021, 11:56:35 AM »
Mills probably have different drive requirements. My MP32 definitely benefitted from 2-sided drive. I wish I had saved the board sawn with 1-sided drive to show the effect but I didn't. It was a long time ago and I guess I didn't want to remember. It didn't take much to add a 2nd chain because the drive shaft I installed spanned the width of the mill. 
Cook's MP-32, 20HP, 20' (modified w/ power feed, up/down, loader/turner)
DH kiln, CatClaw, setter, tandem trailer, log arch, tractor, thumb tacks

Offline Den-Den

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Re: Looking for some tribal knowledge
« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2021, 01:05:19 PM »
My home-built mill drives from one side.  There is slight twisting when the forward movement is blocked on the other side by some stray piece of wood (this is a rare event but it does happen once in a while).  Even during those events, it does not affect the cutting action enough to notice.
Note that strong and stiff are not the same thing, it is possible for a mill to be strong or stiff without being both.  Driving from one side vs both sides will be different for different mills. 
You may think that you can or may think you can't; either way, you are right.

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Re: Looking for some tribal knowledge
« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2021, 04:43:42 PM »
I doubt the HM130MAX will need 2 motors, one on each side, when you push it by hand, you push just on one side. Thus, as long as you assembled it properly and the carriage/sawhead rolls easily down the track, one side should be all you need.
With a motor pulling the saw, you need to watch you don't try to go faster than the saw wants to go, the temptation may be there to "just go a little faster" while the saw says "that's fast enough."
logging small time for years but just learning how,  2012 36 HP Mahindra tractor, 3point log arch, 8000# class excavator, lifts 2500# and sets logs on mill precisely where needed, Woodland Mills HM130Max , maple syrup a hobby that consumes my time. looking to learn blacksmithing.


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