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Author Topic: Swing Mill ??  (Read 2625 times)

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Offline Stephen1

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Swing Mill ??
« on: May 24, 2014, 06:23:23 AM »
I have been to 3 trees this week for estimates. White oaks all 3 of them. They are all over 48" DBH and are pushing 60"
1 is coming down with a 75ton crane. Next to houses. I will try to up load pics from my phone
I will need to 1/4 these trees to get them on my WM.
I am looking at purchasing a swing mill, as it seems I am coming across these trees regularly.
Are the Peterson slabbers all uniform in that that they will fit older machines?
What is Peterson like to deal with for parts? Do they have a North American office for parts or are you waiting for them to ship from down under.
I have talked to Lucas and like that they have a North American office for parts.
What is the difference between the 2 mills? How big a mill do I need. I am really interested in the slabbing, and maybe even the fact that I would break the log down to cants and then put them on the WM.
Any ideas of comments are welcome
Stephen
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Offline chep

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2014, 08:51:09 AM »
I have a Lucas 618. It has been great. That being said, any part you need for it is available, but at an insane price.  I mean really insane. I bought a new sprocket for my slabber the other day. 150$. A new bar for the slabber is near 600$. I think with the import costs form Australia things get a bit crazy. Just something to be aware of. Good luck

Offline Nomad

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2014, 06:31:51 PM »
     I don't know a thing about the Peterson machines, but I know a bit about Lucas.  The 8  or 10 inch machines will slab about 60".  You can get the real swingblade mill and get a slabbing attachment, or you could just get the dedicated slabber for a bit less money.
     Since the Lucas is Aussie made and the Peterson is a Kiwi machine, I doubt the cost of parts would be any less for the Peterson and maybe more, when you figure in shipping.
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Offline sigidi

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #3 on: May 25, 2014, 04:45:57 PM »
I have a Lucas 618. It has been great. That being said, any part you need for it is available, but at an insane price.  I mean really insane. I bought a new sprocket for my slabber the other day. 150$. A new bar for the slabber is near 600$. I think with the import costs form Australia things get a bit crazy. Just something to be aware of. Good luck

Wow Chep, I've worn out one sproket in ten years of milling, I don't see $150 as a large price, especially when I get paid that per hour when the slabber is used....same for the bar, at $600 its paid for itself in half a day and in ten years I'm yet to wear out a bar....

I see that as some really cheap replacement cost.

On the Peterson side of things, I have a customer, who owns one, but calls me to do his slabbing with my Lucas. He does have the slabber, but has never been able to cut properly with it. He tries every now and then, but always rings me to get ir done!!
Always willing to help - Allan

Offline beenthere

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2014, 06:38:57 PM »
Peterson slabber performed quite well on this large redwood log back a few years ago.

http://www.forestryforum.com/board/index.php/topic,25028.msg357987.html#msg357987
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Offline Seaman

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #5 on: May 26, 2014, 07:00:43 AM »
Chep, the maintenance cost is well within limits with a Lucas mill, as long as you charge enough for your work. I have seen $50 per hour to $150 per hour. I am right in the middle, but fixing to go up to $85 I think. If you commonly run across large logs, the Lucas will pay for itself quick!


I looked into getting a sprocket made by a good friend with a nice machine shop. He said it was a deal at $150, the hardening alone would cost him $100 bucks!
Sidigi, I have worn out two sprockets in the last year, I must be running the chain either too loose or too tight. I tighten so I can pull it out with about an inch between the drive teeth and bar. Is that too loose?

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Offline sigidi

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #6 on: May 26, 2014, 04:41:28 PM »
Chep, the maintenance cost is well within limits with a Lucas mill, as long as you charge enough for your work. I have seen $50 per hour to $150 per hour. I am right in the middle, but fixing to go up to $85 I think. If you commonly run across large logs, the Lucas will pay for itself quick!


I looked into getting a sprocket made by a good friend with a nice machine shop. He said it was a deal at $150, the hardening alone would cost him $100 bucks!
Sidigi, I have worn out two sprockets in the last year, I must be running the chain either too loose or too tight. I tighten so I can pull it out with about an inch between the drive teeth and bar. Is that too loose?

Frank

Frank, it sounds about right, one thing to check (which I'd think you've already done) is if your sprocket is shimmed properly so its inline with your bar. There are 4 thin washers that come with a slabber. My first mill needed 3 under the sprocket and one on the nut side, latest slabber needs 2 and 2. Mind you it depends how much slabbing you do too - I only do about 10% of my milling time slabbing.
Always willing to help - Allan

Offline Seaman

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2014, 06:31:51 AM »
Thanks Sidigi, I have shims under to keep it in line, but none over the sprocket. I will correct that. My work is 90% slabbing.
Frank
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Offline sigidi

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #8 on: May 27, 2014, 07:05:15 AM »
Thanks Sidigi, I have shims under to keep it in line, but none over the sprocket. I will correct that. My work is 90% slabbing.
Frank

Not to hijack the thread, but they are 4 thin washers....will add a pic on that Lucas Q's thread over the wknd ;)
Always willing to help - Allan

Offline Seaman

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #9 on: May 28, 2014, 06:59:35 AM »
Thanks
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Offline Stephen1

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #10 on: May 30, 2014, 08:29:25 AM »
No Worries guys.
I am still deciding if the interest is there in the area, to support me purchasing a swing mill with the slabbing attachment.
I have found 2 other people with the slabbing attachment , but they are both to  busy to come saw for me.
I am wondering if a call to various tree services to see if they would have a use for someone with a swing mill.
My helper tells me to buy it and they will come. ;)
what have you guys found? did the calls come once you purchase a swing mill with slabbing attachment?
IDRY Vacum Kiln, LT40HDWide, BMS250 sharpener/setter 742b Bobcat, TCM forklift, Sthil 026,038, 461. 1952 TEA Fergusan Tractor

Offline Seaman

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #11 on: May 31, 2014, 07:16:08 AM »
Yes they did. I took time to visit a few of the big circle mills in the area, and give them cards. They send folks to me which have logs too big for their circle mill.
Arbourist of course, and grading companies also remove a lot of big trees.  The problem is having a way to fetch these big logs.

I use the slabber mostly, but could have more swing work if I chased it. I just don't like handling small logs.

Word gets out, it has taken us about 18 months to get busy.

Frank

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Offline logboy

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #12 on: June 02, 2014, 01:07:50 AM »
Personally I would grab a Lucas Swingblade mill then buy the stabbing attachment so you have the best of both worlds. A surprising amount of my business is sawing 10-11" thick "chunks" to be sawed on a bandsaw. I can convert a 60-48" log into manageable chunks in a few minutes, a fraction of the time a chainsaw will, that's why they have me do it. The bandsaw guys love it.  They put a 48" x 10" chunk on their mill and just saw off 1 x 10s until it's gone. No need to even rotate. It's like cheating.

Since Lucas joined forces with Left Coast Supplies prices have come down quite a bit. I don't see anything I get from them scaring me in comparison to the stuff you get from any other company.
I like Lucas Mills and big wood.  www.logboy.com

Online Ianab

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #13 on: June 02, 2014, 02:49:09 AM »
Quote
I have found 2 other people with the slabbing attachment , but they are both to  busy to come saw for me.

This would make me think the work is out there then?

When one log can keep you busy for a whole day you don't need a heck of a lot of them to keep busy and the mill is easy to pick up and take to a single big log (or tree). You also have the option of easily quarter sawing those big ones as they often have some good material for that. You can even saw some of a log, and slab some of it.

Very versatile.

Ian
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Offline Seaman

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #14 on: June 03, 2014, 06:26:29 AM »
Logboy, good to see ya !

Frank
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Offline Stephen1

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #15 on: July 07, 2014, 09:23:23 PM »
I am still looking for a used swing mill, and the slabbing attachment. I have even given some thought to selling the WM and recycling the cash to a SM.
IDRY Vacum Kiln, LT40HDWide, BMS250 sharpener/setter 742b Bobcat, TCM forklift, Sthil 026,038, 461. 1952 TEA Fergusan Tractor

Offline sigidi

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #16 on: July 08, 2014, 04:25:19 PM »
I know a fella on here who is about to pull the trigger on a used (28hr) Lucas for well under its value......not saying any names just yet :D :D
Always willing to help - Allan

Offline Stephen1

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #17 on: July 08, 2014, 08:36:54 PM »
Does that mean a road trip to the land Down Under might be in the cards
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Offline sigidi

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Re: Swing Mill ??
« Reply #18 on: July 09, 2014, 03:13:10 AM »
Does that mean a road trip to the land Down Under might be in the cards

Nah he is one of yours over there and lookin at buying locally, he and I have been talking about things ;) it seems a great deal for him
Always willing to help - Allan


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