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Author Topic: First timer - Building my own Mill and would like opinions  (Read 944 times)

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Offline Hilltop366

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Re: First timer - Building my own Mill and would like opinions
« Reply #20 on: October 21, 2019, 08:32:28 AM »
If you want to build one then why not, about 20 years ago I built a lawn tractor engine driven chainsaw mill over the winter with my dad. I honestly think I had more fun building it than I did running it.

I think you are on the right track breaking it down to components and thinking about one piece at a time, I would start at the business end and work my way to the ground as far as planning it out and building. I would start with a blade, to me unless you have a special need it makes sense to go with a common size blade length and width and start there. So blades then band wheels, shafts, bearings, saw head frame, motor, carriage, lift mechanism.......

Make it strong and adjustable and you should be able to make it cut consistently.

Take a look at the "Cook's Saw" http://cookssaw.com web site, lots of good information. Check out the parts section and there are some good videos too.

Offline Ed_K

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Re: First timer - Building my own Mill and would like opinions
« Reply #21 on: October 21, 2019, 09:04:04 AM »
 Do it. It will be a great learning experience that will benefit you the rest of your life.
Ed K

Online Crusarius

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Re: First timer - Building my own Mill and would like opinions
« Reply #22 on: October 21, 2019, 09:29:07 AM »
Thanks btulloh for linking to my build :)

When I decided to build my mill I had very little exposure to sawing. Probably be closer to zero. Only thing I ever did was see woodmizers run from a far. Never really cared about them. Till one day I decided I needed to build one. 

The mechanical aspect of things is very simple. The features and details is what takes the most time. 

Building a mill is fun. Can also be very rewarding. Feel free to check out my build and if you have any question feel free to ask. I will help however I can.

In the process of building it I learned quite a bit. Then as I was using it to make lumber I learned even more. One day I will sell my current mill and build V2.0 with everything I learned on V1.

So the best advice I can give you is be open to criticism and be willing to change. The #1 thing I hate about my build is the acme thread rod for raise and lower. In future builds I would use something different.

The #2 thing I screwed up on is trying to maximize my cut width by putting the backstop right at the blade guide. This gave me max cut width but now if I have a curved log or any branches barely sticking out I have to trim them off in order to get the carriage past them.

I ended up maximizing my cut width by making my mill capable of running a 158" and a 176" blade.

Offline RAYAR

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Re: First timer - Building my own Mill and would like opinions
« Reply #23 on: October 21, 2019, 10:25:57 AM »
This being a hobby build, then go for it. Lots of info and support here to help guide you through your build. Check out Canuck Woodchuck's youtube channel for Esko's Old Man Mill videos, some good info there. He explains a lot of do's and don'ts and why. You will need to pause the video and study some of the details and also watch them several times to really get some good build tips. I would not go with the built-in lube tank though, have it separate. Have fun building your mill. I may not be too far away depending on your location. I currently have my mill set up in Moncton if you're interested in seeing some details and it's operation.

Ray
mobile manual mill (local build) (mods & additions on-going)
Shop built auto band sharpener
Husqvarna 50, 61, 254XP (and others)
96 Polaris Sportsman 500
2006 Ranger 4X2 w/cap, manual trans

Offline danielhachey

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Re: First timer - Building my own Mill and would like opinions
« Reply #24 on: October 21, 2019, 11:58:24 AM »
Hey @Crusarius , I just want to say, your thread is probably my biggest inspiration, cool to see you posted here. I just spent the last 4 hours of my morning reading your thread start to finish, taking notes on parts, calculating prices and throwing them into notepad. It's quite inspiring to see your build from start to finish so I really appreciate the detail you put in. I'll be using your thread as a complete guide. I think I would go for the crane method with a hand winch and snatch block pulley at the top. I like the idea of the threaded rod, but from experience in 3d printing, it seems to over complicate the need to simply raise and lower the assembly and use too many parts (maybe i'm wrong, just my initial thought). 

Also, yes, @RAYAR I'm located just past Sussex so really not too far. When I get a few steps further I would definitely love to check out your setup. The one part I can't wrap my brain around is the log bed and the whole mechanism to hold the logs and have it be efficient yet sturdy enough to withstand some large logs. That and the backstop. 



Online Crusarius

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Re: First timer - Building my own Mill and would like opinions
« Reply #25 on: October 21, 2019, 12:18:42 PM »
I am not sure I would go that far. :) But it was a fun trip. Kinda looking forward to doing it again.

The threaded rod does work but there sure is quite a load on it. I have ideas to fix it. Not sure how crazy I will get on this setup. Thanks for the inspiring words.

Offline Hoopty5.0

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Re: First timer - Building my own Mill and would like opinions
« Reply #26 on: October 21, 2019, 02:52:28 PM »
I saw you mentioned using angle for the bed - I did that on my build and (to credit those who said it would be flimsy) it's flimsy. This is 3x5x1/4".  I'd be careful there. I built a mill using the same kit as Crusarius, and I'd recommend it for quality, but not for ease of build.

Offline JoshNZ

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Re: First timer - Building my own Mill and would like opinions
« Reply #27 on: October 21, 2019, 10:09:39 PM »
Yeah I wouldn't be discouraged from building your own if that's what you want to do. Mine is mostly complete, functional and useable, certainly enjoyed the build! I've had a few ballsups by flying from the seat of my pants as said but nothing too dramatic to reverse or fix, I'm pretty happy with it.

On the other hand if you were running it around the clock to make a living, I'd definitely opt for a proven design, with support. But for satisfying a hobby interest.. get stuck into it!

My guides work well and they're fairly simple to make. Easier to look at a photo than read a description I put a few photos in my thread if you can be bothered looking. A mill without guides would be a dud, for sure. As I said it might work but not to any practical level.

Will give us all some coffee/bed time reading if nothing else  popcorn_smiley

Good luck regardless!

Offline Woodpecker52

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Re: First timer - Building my own Mill and would like opinions
« Reply #28 on: October 21, 2019, 11:36:46 PM »
Start with a good set of plans and blueprints of a proven design!
Woodmizer LT-15, Ross Pony #1 planner, Ford 2600 tractor, Stihl chainsaws, Kubota rtv900 Kubota L3830F tractor

Offline RAYAR

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Re: First timer - Building my own Mill and would like opinions
« Reply #29 on: October 22, 2019, 12:55:23 AM »
Also, yes, @RAYAR I'm located just past Sussex so really not too far. When I get a few steps further I would definitely love to check out your setup. The one part I can't wrap my brain around is the log bed and the whole mechanism to hold the logs and have it be efficient yet sturdy enough to withstand some large logs. That and the backstop.
Daniel, I'm sure I can help you out with some knowledge on the bed and other components related to it. Like I said, I have my mill currently set up in Moncton, but hope to have it home in Memramcook before the road salt starts being applied. I was milling for a few hours this afternoon 'til dusk. You can also check out my photo gallery for various pics and details of my mill. You may also want to have a good look at the carriage on mine and I could point out things to be aware of in planning your set-up so you initially end up being happier with your build first time around. It may save you from having to re-build some things that you weren't initially aware of.
Ray
mobile manual mill (local build) (mods & additions on-going)
Shop built auto band sharpener
Husqvarna 50, 61, 254XP (and others)
96 Polaris Sportsman 500
2006 Ranger 4X2 w/cap, manual trans


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