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Author Topic: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?  (Read 22711 times)

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Offline Dangerous_Dan

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Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« on: November 30, 2005, 01:36:29 PM »
I have got some ideas banging around in my head about building a swingblade style sawmill and was interested to know if anyone has built one?  ???
First you make it work, then you trick it out!

Offline woodbowl

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #1 on: October 09, 2006, 12:04:09 AM »
Yep, here's a fellow that built his own homemade swingblade.  ;D  ;D  ::)  He did a fine job on it. It sure would be nice if there were a lot more folks that would trust their own abilities and try to build a swinger.

http://www.forestryforum.com/board/index.php?topic=17100.msg246313#msg246313

Now that a little time has gone by, I would like to know if there are any more projects like this going on.
Full time custom sawing at the customers site since 1995.  WoodMizer LT40 Super Hyd.

Offline jpgreen

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #2 on: October 09, 2006, 10:20:58 AM »
I tink it waas a dangerous guy named Dan.  Prolly had help from a guy named Red..  ;D
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Offline Firebass

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #3 on: March 06, 2007, 11:06:00 PM »
Yes, I cut my first board today.   A little unnerving but my fears quickly faded...  Works like a champ. Was my best Winter project yet.  But I don't recommend anyone try building a swinger without a very skilled background and lots of research   8)

Steve

Now what about all those chip???

Offline woodbowl

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #4 on: March 06, 2007, 11:23:26 PM »
Welcome to the forum Firebass. I see you have access to some machining. It sounds like you've got a good project going with your homemade swinger. Tell us some more now ..... don't be bashfull ..... and don't fergit the pics.   ;D
Full time custom sawing at the customers site since 1995.  WoodMizer LT40 Super Hyd.

Offline Firebass

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2007, 12:02:46 AM »

It all started when I went to buy lumber....   I decided then I needed a sawmill because I had a good supply of logs.  And was wanting to build a bigger shop.  So I started researching  all I could find about sawmills.:P 

Band VS Swing  ???
I'm still not sure which one is a better mill still,   but I picked a swing for my winter project.  Yes, Machine Shop is nice, but it's indoors and I'd rather be outdoors.

I still have to paint and add a few minor things like "EMERGENCY KILL BUTTON"  Carriage Lock...  But generally its done.  I cant wait to start cutting logs.

I'll add photos soon

Note:  I'm not building mills to sell and only built this mill for my own personal use. 

Offline Firebass

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #6 on: March 07, 2007, 10:37:37 PM »

Heres the beast I spent my winter on :)

Steve

Offline Firebass

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #7 on: March 07, 2007, 10:47:13 PM »
I think this was the most difficult part.

Offline woodbowl

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #8 on: March 07, 2007, 10:56:52 PM »
I think this was the most difficult part.


Firebass, is that a homemade gearbox? What is the input speed? What ratio are you running? What is the blade speed?
Full time custom sawing at the customers site since 1995.  WoodMizer LT40 Super Hyd.

Offline Firebass

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #9 on: March 07, 2007, 11:13:10 PM »
No, Its a Curtis model 201.  I then run 2" timing belt to a jack shaft for the saw arbor which is 1 15/16 Diameter. This gives me lot of room for larger blades or different attachments like shaping or planning should I decide to tackle it.   Off the top of my head I think the blade runs roughly 2000 RPM now but by changing timing sprockets I can speed up or slow down with the same gear box.  When I started this mill the first thing I purchased was a blade which came with all the info I needed on the box.  Blade is made by Optimo.  And is VERY similar to Lucas.

Offline brdmkr

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #10 on: March 09, 2007, 10:49:43 PM »
  Blade is made by Optimo.  And is VERY similar to Lucas.

Firebass,

I did a google for Optimo blades, but nothing looked right.  Do they have a website?

You have one nice looking machine.  Maybe I missed it, but how large is the blade?  Also, are you set up to double-cut?  If so, how is it accomplished?  Do you have to rotate the entire carriage or can the blade flip 180?





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Offline Radar67

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #11 on: March 09, 2007, 11:19:55 PM »
I then run 2" timing belt to a jack shaft for the saw arbor which is 1 15/16 Diameter.

Firebass, could you give a little more detail on the jack shaft? A picture would be great. This is a real interesting topic for several of our members.

Stew
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Offline woodbowl

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #12 on: March 10, 2007, 12:08:29 AM »
Firebass, now you can add your mill to the growing list of proud sawmill owners. This is a great directory to quick find equipment and people that share the same interest.  http://www.forestryforum.com/board/index.php?topic=16971.0
Full time custom sawing at the customers site since 1995.  WoodMizer LT40 Super Hyd.

Offline getoverit

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #13 on: March 10, 2007, 12:36:00 AM »
great job firebass!

Keep us inormed on how this thing does and be sure to add as much info on it as possible. there are several others that have been interested in building swingers.
I'm a lumberjack and I'm ok, I work all night and sleep all day

Offline customsawyer

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #14 on: March 10, 2007, 04:45:25 AM »
Bravo! smiley_clapping
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Offline Burlkraft

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #15 on: March 10, 2007, 06:47:45 AM »
Firebass,

That's  a nice lookin' rig you built ya built there....Now we need some pics of some of the finer details ya got goin'... ;D ;D ;D

I too am interested in seein' that jackshaft... ;) ;)

Ya got a 90* swing or did ya make other angles in the bracket like Peterson just came out with.. ??? ???

Please...show us more.... ;D ;D
Why not just 1 pain free day?

Offline Firebass

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #16 on: March 10, 2007, 11:22:57 PM »
I then run 2" timing belt to a jack shaft for the saw arbor which is 1 15/16 Diameter.

Firebass, could you give a little more detail on the jack shaft? A picture would be great. This is a real interesting topic for several of our members.

Stew

If you look at the picture you can see the timing belt.  It drives the saw Arbor.  It is driven by the gear box which pivots around the swing axis.   It takes some doing to get the geometry right.  As, I stated before I was using a Curtis 201 which is wrong because I used the Curtis 211 I think you could use the Model 215 as well.  Timing belts are nice because you don't have to worry about adjustment they are a fixed length and work like gears but have the flexibility of V belt drive.  I've used these belts before on other equipment and they are very reliable.  Basically when you mount the bearings and gear box they can be fixed and will never require tightening which is the problem trying to use straight V Belt mechanical drive.  In my case I'm using two each 1 15/16 Sealed roller Bearing for the saw arbor, the type with a external  retaining ring. I then machined a block to mount  them in then sandwiched these bearing blocks inbetween to the plates shown on the photo .  These manufactured bearing blocks are the same width as the gear box and the rotation carriage trunnion mounts.  (4 1/8")  I used 5/16 plate for the sandwiching plate and all bolted together it is very strong.  The only welding I did on this swing carrage is the trunion pins and cowling to keep sawdust out.
All said and done. Technically it is a type of gear box but it incorporates Timing belts to transfer power to the secondary drive(between the gear box and the saw arbor).  One other note about large diameter saw arbors is that you can use big bearings that can handle huge amount of stress and run very cool.  also I have added gease zerts to the arbor bearings to keep them filled with fresh grease all the time. 

Steve



Offline Firebass

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #17 on: March 10, 2007, 11:33:57 PM »
  Blade is made by Optimo.  And is VERY similar to Lucas.

Firebass,

I did a google for Optimo blades, but nothing looked right.  Do they have a website?



You have one nice looking machine.  Maybe I missed it, but how large is the blade?  Also, are you set up to double-cut?  If so, how is it accomplished?  Do you have to rotate the entire carriage or can the blade flip 180?








Sorry I ment to say OPTECO and yes they are used on the Lucas mill. No web site I could find.

Yes, I can double cut without turning the carrage.  My motor is not mounted below the 8" cut depth so I just go to the back side of the log and back cut.  You don't need 180 rotation...

Offline woodbowl

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #18 on: March 10, 2007, 11:48:46 PM »
Is the boss welded onto the jack shaft, then turned true or is it machined out of one piece of metal?

Are the timming pulleys mounted, using they're original bore or are they remachined?

Are the timming pulleys off of a certain make of vehicle or another type of equipment?
Full time custom sawing at the customers site since 1995.  WoodMizer LT40 Super Hyd.

Offline Firebass

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Re: Has anyone built a swingblade mill from scratch?
« Reply #19 on: March 11, 2007, 12:10:06 AM »
Is the boss welded onto the jack shaft, then turned true or is it machined out of one piece of metal?

Are the timing pulleys mounted, using they're original bore or are they remachined?

Are the timing pulleys off of a certain make of vehicle or another type of equipment?

Hi Woodbowl,
No welding!!!  That would be bad. unless you heat treated and stress relieved and even then it could be risky.  I used a method where I machined a arbor out of 2.5"4140 down to 1 15/16 but left a hub at the end where the saw flange (Boss) is. then I  pressed on the Saw flange from the bearing side of the shaft.  No chance of failure in my opinion.  this is something you don't want to mess with.  You could also machine out of a solid piece of 4140 but it would take forever.


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