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r.garrison1
r.garrison1's picture
Ripping big logs; techniques?

I've been working on some huge cedars that are too big for my LM29, and I've been ripping them so I can swallow them with my saw.

I've notices that when I sharpen my saw to 10 degrees, it cuts better, but when I rip a log, I see some differences in how well it rips.

When I cut from the log end, I get huge shavings from the saw.

When I cut from the side, shaving a bit of edgeo off the log, I get real small sawdust, almost like I have a dull chain.

Is there anything I can do to make the shave a bit more effective? Yesterday, I spent more time trimming the log than I did sawing/

wayne busse
wayne busse's picture

You need to change numbers on the mill. HD 36 would solve the problem. But then you'd just try to saw even bigger logs. I'm no help at all...

r.garrison1
r.garrison1's picture

Yeah, I got the mill for my place, but in the off season (when the snow is too deep in the mountains), I have the mill in my home on the other side of the state. Trying to keep it busy during the off season is what got me into this. Do have some neat raised beds to show for it.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1C96yLdtXM-2pcFwTr-eMYQ1DbtJik2HbgQ

wayne busse
wayne busse's picture

Beautiful planks, it's a shame to fill them full of soil.

sawwood
sawwood's picture

r.garrison1 i have the same thing when i rip a log to fit our mill. Its where the grain runs that make the differents in  the saw dust. I to sharpin my chain to

10degs and it helps.

 

Sawwood

r.garrison1
r.garrison1's picture

Thanks, Sawwood.

I had a monster log that I had to rip the full length on two sides before I could cut; Since I was only trimming the edge (so I had the most wood left on the cant), it took way too long to rip. Happy with the outcome, though.

sawwood
sawwood's picture

Yes I had to do that with two logs and I have two more to do. It does take long to cut the sides so It will fit the mill. Our mill has 32" between the post and 18"

between the guides. I can gain more room if I remove the left guide and readjust the right one. I will try to take some photos of the two logs I need to trim.

I use a Homelite 330 chainsaw with a 24" bar and a lumber maker to guide the saw along the sides. I would like to have a bigger saw and longer bar but for

now I will just use the Homelite.

 

 Sawwood

DaveM
DaveM's picture

Hey Gang.....Just received a large hard maple log.  I've cut it to 5' lengths as I want to cut it into 8/4" slabs for tables.  The problem is, it's average 31" in diameter.  I have the HD36, but it seems I only have 29" between the guides.  Does anyone know, or have any ideas on how to saw wider than the 29" ?  And why did they call it the HD36?

I don't want to remove the "live edges" on the slabs if I can avoid it.

oneoldcoot
oneoldcoot's picture

When I was cutting cookies on a 34+" log I removed both guides and cut way slow. You may get a dip or 2 but if you are careful it should make some sweet looking tops.

 

DaveM
DaveM's picture

Thanx !!  It's supposed to not rain for 2 straight days !!!  If it dries out enough so I can get the tractor back by the mill without rutting everything up, I may try it.  If not, I'll be sure to post how things worked out.   If anyone else has any experience with this, kindly post to inform me.

r.garrison1
r.garrison1's picture

I have the LM29, and the tallest log I can cut is 29". That is as high as I can get to clear under the blade guard.

I suspect the HD36 is similar.

DaveM
DaveM's picture

The height is not a problem as I can raise the head over 31".  It's the distance between the blade guides.  It doesn't jive with the claims in the brochures.  I figure I did something wrong during assembly......maybe....

wayne busse
wayne busse's picture

The HD 36 is so named because you can process a 36" diameter log. The widest slab It will make is 28" unless you take the guides off. I've never tried it but Post-Oakie has done it  several times. You'll need a fresh blade and lots of tension and slow feed rate but it is possible to do without the guides.

DaveM
DaveM's picture

So....Post-Oakie......is it a good idea to have my life insurance paid up if I try sawing this without the guides on ?  Please impart your experience !!  I would imagine you have to go real slow without them on !!   Anyone else try this ?   The tree was standing dead but the log is solid & shows signs of considerable spalting.  I am thinking the slabs would display a lot of character.

Post Oakie
Post Oakie's picture

Dave,

I have only taken the movable guide off the sawmill, and that gets me 32" wide cuts, if you get everything lined up just right.  Never had a problem.  It is more a matter of how HARD you push the mill, rather than how fast, but you do need a good, sharp blade.  I have done this with honeylocust, so it works with very hard wood.  Also make sure it is tracking ok.  Spalted slabs do have a lot of character.  Well worth giving it a shot!

r.garrison1
r.garrison1's picture

The biggest reason I can see for that extra bar in front of the unused blade is so there is not a section of blade exposed that isn't being used for the cut. If your cut is big enough to take the entire width of what you can give, then the reason for the extra bar is moot.

If you also take off the whole assembly, that is another matter; I take off that little protection bar when I am cutting monsters, but I leave the leading roller and such.

DaveM
DaveM's picture

Can you say "Lawyers" ??frown

 

Fred K
Fred K's picture

Hey doesn'tDave,

I have a LM29 also, and thought the same thing, I got a hold of Norwood to ask them them to claify.

Thier response was " the blade reaches 22" above the bed and there is 7" clearance from the blade to the bottom of the guards to equal 29".

But doesen't explain why there is only 19" or so from the log rests to the blade guard and about 22" with the guard removed.

If you measure from blade guide roller to the other roller I think it's close to 29", but I'm to new at this to try to attempt to cut a large log

without the log rest's in place, i think you would be praying the weight of the log will keep it from moving, but if it did could be a disaster.

Fred K
Fred K's picture

Don't know how the doesn't got between the hey and your name. Dam computers

r.garrison1
r.garrison1's picture

I've done some large logs, and I don't like not having them clamped. I sometimes clamp them below midline, where they are narrower, so the clamp doesn't stick out and catch the carriage. One note; keep the handle at least a few inches from the bed, and it has a bit more room; down low, it can catch on the roller guides.

DavidM
DavidM's picture

Hi Dave - sorry to be so slow to read your post.  Only reason I have been reading through all the forums is because it’s so muddy I can’t saw and I’m losing my mind.  Using the HD36 I have taken both guides off several times and sawed up to 34” wife logs  - only thing is that I can only saw a 2” thick slab once it gets this wide or it hits the shroud. But if I cut slow with a sharp blade and keep it good and tight it seems to do ok. 

This seasoned live oak had to be trimmed on top to fit it in but I finally slabbed it out.  Took me about 6 hours to load and cut it up.  

DaveM
DaveM's picture

Thanx David.  I've not cut since late November.  The ground never froze & we got over a foot of snow & there has been deep snow ever since.  Still have about 18" & the last two days, another 4-5" of fresh snow.  Hard walking & the tractor just sinks into the mud under the snow & ruts everything up. The ski slope / resort over on the next hill, however, unlike me, is very happy.  Thank God for my kegerator !!

I'll be trying to cut the big maple once the snow leaves & the ground firms up.  Lots of good advice in this thread, so I feel I can safely remove the bar & guide to increase my cutting width.

DavidM
DavidM's picture

With a log this big the first cut is 8” deep - the shroud clears the 36” log but I cannot raise it any higher so have to make a thick cut and trim it later.  I prefer logs 28” and smaller but I saw whatever comes my way lol. 

sawwood
sawwood's picture

We have cut some big Oak logs in the 32" size by taking the guide off. The biggest thing is turning that big old log. We have a winch to turn logs or cants,

but that big ones can be hard to turn. If Jim is there i have him use the skid steer to lift and then turn the log. Makeit much safer and not damage the mill.

I still have two big Oaks to trim when ever the weather is better.

Sawwood

r.garrison1
r.garrison1's picture

For turning big logs, since I usually work alone, I have a slow technique. 

I have a variety of methods to get it to move.  

First, I put a safety stop or two on the clamp side. My safety stop is usually a 2" diameter pipe that I fit into the top of one of the legs on the trailer. I really don't what the log to roll off the other side.

The biggest thing I like to watch for is when the log slams down on the new side; I don't want it doing any damage to the stops or rolling off the side.

I've found that soft big logs, especially uneven ones, tend to grab the top of the log stops, instead of sliding past. I watch for this when turning, and if this happens, I pry that end away from the stop a bit. If I am using my winch, if the log gets an inch or two airborne off the bunk on an end, I stop, pry it away from the stop until it is contacting the bunk, then do a couple more cranks. Sometimes, I have to do this a few times, on both ends.

 

DavidM
DavidM's picture

I also work alone most of the time and I have used some of your ideas such as never getting downhill, using pipes for stops ect.  One of the best tricks I have learned was when a log binds up while rolling it is to let the winch off a few inches, raise one end up with the hydraulic toe board and push the log back from the log stop that’s binding with a pinch bar.  Then I can use the winch and a strap type comalong to slowly flip the log over.   I’m learning that the real trick is never give that big sucker enough room to get up any momentum - if it’s moving fast I can’t control the way it rolls.  Lol

Post Oakie
Post Oakie's picture

I use a similar technique for turning big logs, but use a tractor with a front end loader pulling a strap wrapped around the log.  Spins it right around.  With a little practice, I got where I could make that first 1/4 turn and get it pretty close.  It took a while to figure out that letting the tractor do the heavy lifting is more a matter of surival that convenience!

r.garrison1
r.garrison1's picture

Yeah, that sounds good, but for me, my tractor is in Eastern Oregon, and the big logs are in the Western part of the state. Next season, I'll bring my tracton when I shift locations.

Post Oakie
Post Oakie's picture

You can also turn them with a strap and high lift jack.

OL' Purple Pete
OL' Purple Pete's picture

I guess that picker truck don't run.That would be my choice if I had it.wink

Post Oakie
Post Oakie's picture

No, it hasn't run in a few years.  Detroit Diesel engine, and no one told me it has to run full throttle all the time.  I was idling the engine while loading logs and seized the bearings.  One of these days, maybe I'll put a Cumins or Perkins in it-- or put the picker on another truck.

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