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Alaskan Woodsman
Alaskan Woodsman's picture
Norwood Chainsaw Mill Reviews etc.

Howdy Norwood Folk!

I am looking at the Norwood chainsaw mill(s). I have previous experience with the Alaskan Mark III chainsaw mill and have one. It works great but I'm looking to buy one that I don't have to bend over and operate from my knees.

How do you like your Norwood chainsaw mill? I'm looking to cut 2x6, x8's, x10's and timbers of various dimensions. I have a Husky 925. It is a beefy and powerful saw.

All help, suggestions, tricks of the trade etc. would be appreciated.  Thank you!

Glen

DeansSon
DeansSon's picture

I also have an Alaskan, Running a Stihl w/32" bar.  Took an hour to cut a 28"x12 foot slab.  Bought a HD36 in Sept, and have been cutting since Dec.  Takes about 90 sec to cut the same plank.  I do have to drg the logs to the mill and load, instead of taking the saw to the log, but the production is still 10x faster, and boards are of higher quality.

Post Oakie
Post Oakie's picture

What size logs?  The Norwood chain saw mill is a good design, but limited in size.  You mean Homelite 925?  I've never heard of a Husky 925.  You'll get faster cutting with a milling chain.  The angle of the teeth is much flatter (about 10 degrees as opposed to 30 for a standard tooth angle).  It gives a more agressive cut.  If you can go with a band sawmill, you'll save yourself a lot of time.

Alaskan Woodsman
Alaskan Woodsman's picture

Hi Oakie

Thanks for writing me back. I've had loggin issues. 

I was mistaken on the saw number it is a Husky 390 XP.

I also have an old P100 Partner which is a 6 cubic inch saw that milled alot of boards with ripping chain about 25 years ago using the Granberg Alaskan Mk III and a 32" bar when it was brand new. I didn't need or use an auxillary oiler and it still has the same roller tip 32 inch chainsaw bar. The saw works great but I bought the 390 XP to augment the Partner.

The new 390 XP has a 28" bar and I will get ripping chain. I'll be in SE Alaska milling boards for a house and shop.

The reason I like the Norwood chainsaw mill is that I can stand up and mill boards.

I have milled alot of boards, timbers and siding with the Granberg, but milling on my knees all bent over is not an option for me anymore. I can sharpen chainsaw blades more quickly than bandsaw blades and for way cheaper. I cut all the framing package, flooring, porches and interior siding for a 12x16 two story cabin in 1984 & 5.

The kerf is a problem waste-wise but not really an issue . I use 3/8" chain which is better than .404 chain kerf-wise.

I will be milling Sitka spruce, western hemlock, red & yellow cedar and some alder occasionally. Log sizes will be second growth 14" to 26" diameter at the small end of logs 16' 6" or less mostly they will be 10' or less.  2x6's, 2x8's

I'd really like to hear from people who have worked with the Norwood chainsaw mills. Milling on the ground is more feasible for me because I don't have a tractor or forklift.

Simba
Simba's picture

A buddy of mine has the large Alaskan mill that we've used quite a bit. Here are a few things I would point out:

  • Takes a big saw with a big bar. I wouldn't use less than a 70 CC motor (We use a Husky 88 with 33" bar). You will spend a lot of money on the saw and then the mill. Think about the value of the wood you will get in comparison to the capital cost.
  • It's slow, somewhat tedious work, especially with hardwoods.
  • A lot of wood goes to the kerf(s).
  • If you are going to do a lot you may think about buying a specialized ripping chain.
  • Consider taking the wood for free, moving it onto your property, and look for a guy with a portable bandsaw mill.
r.garrison1
r.garrison1's picture

Simba

Good points. One thing is the chain is cutting a wider cut; maybe .325 for a standard width. A bandsaw is closer to ..035 to .045.

All the extra wood you are cutting requires more power to take the wood off the log.

The harder wood you cut, the more power you need.