The Shop => Wood & Stuff => Topic started by: vtsteam on August 31, 2015, 09:21:17 AM

Title: Logging and sawing
Post by: vtsteam on August 31, 2015, 09:21:17 AM
I've been doing a little logging and sawing this last couple of weeks. I thought you ll might enjoy some pictures of what I'm using.

This is my homemade band sawmill. It's powered by a 10 hp motor and is pushed along the track by hand. The band wheels are trailer wheels. The blade guard is a tandem axle trailer fender. I can cut through a 16" diameter pine log, 16 feet long in 60 seconds with a new blade. I've been sharpening my own blades lately with an attachment to adapt a $30 Harbor freight chainsaw sharpener (grinder).

Behind the saw are stacks of 1" thick red maple, and black (sweet) birch. I just cut up some hemlock 2 by material in the foreground

Title: Re: Logging and sawing
Post by: vtsteam on August 31, 2015, 09:24:59 AM
Here's a closer picture of the mill from the blade side. The blade is a 1-1/4" wide x 7/8" pitch band about 13 feet long. The track is 20 feet long.

Title: Re: Logging and sawing
Post by: vtsteam on August 31, 2015, 09:27:20 AM
Here are the hemlock 2x8's, right off the mill. They're heavy!

Title: Re: Logging and sawing
Post by: Pete W. on August 31, 2015, 09:33:00 AM
Hi there, Steve,

That looks like a handy bit of kit!!!   :bow:   :bow:   :bow: 

No problems with neighbours complaining about the noise then??   :D   :D   :D 

Except maybe if you wake up a hibernating grizzly!!   :lol:   :lol:   :lol: 
Title: Re: Logging and sawing
Post by: vtsteam on August 31, 2015, 09:40:24 AM
This is my quirky little log winch. I think it was used to haul fishing shanties off the river ice in winter. I just got the engine going again after several years of disuse, and spliced in new oak bearing blocks. Gave the engine a new coat of white paint, too.

Yup, that winch drum runs in oak bearings. The engine needed a new carb, gas tank, and new magneto. I added electronic ignition, and it starts instantly now. The engine serial number was from the mid 60's and I bet this whole winch rig was built back when it was new. There is an ancient brake on one end of the shaft -- probably Model T era. It has webbed shoes.

The bottom has a sled-like profile so the winch can skid itself to where you want it. Then I just chain it to a tree, or other solid object, and run the winch cable to the log I want to skid. It is a surprisingly fast operation, though the cable runs slowly with all the reduction. There's a gearbox on the engine, then a big pulley reduction, and then a chain reduction to the winch drum. The wooden vertical lever presses on an idler pulley to tighten the belt drive, by way of a clutch. the other vertical metal lever is for the brake. I haven't ever needed the brake. Oh also there's a lever with a long spring. It rubs against the spool cheeks. That's a friction brake to slow the winch so it doesn't overspin and tangle the cable when you're pulling it out. Also keeps the cable taught wwhen rewinding with no load.

Though this was not originally meant for log skidding, a similar winch is built and used sometimes by individuals, called a "Yankee Yarder."

Title: Re: Logging and sawing
Post by: vtsteam on August 31, 2015, 10:01:15 AM
Pete it's surprisingly moderate in sound. Nothing like a chainsaw or leaf blower, which neighbors all have, though the nearest one is about 1000 feet away. The engine is a Subaru Robin 4 cycle. Might even be quieter than a lawnmower. I run it at 2750 RPM for long life, too. I have a tach on it.

The band itself isn't very noisy, though the guide bearings can be if they're getting old. I should replace them now, since one at least is starting to protest. They are just stock cheap ball bearings. Two on a bolt fit the side of the blade and one a little larger in OD contacts the back of the blade as a stop.

There are bears here but they're black bears, not grizzlies, which live out west. Black bears are smaller. If you call 200 pounds small. Still, when I'm alone in the woods logging, I like to make lots of noise. Grizzlies attack for territorial reasons, black bears because they want to eat you. Thus, pointless to "play dead" in the east! Well bear attacks are extremely rare here, but I'm cautious. Hate to be the exception that proves the rule.

One rounded the corner of the house in broad daylight a few years ago, luckily I had just come inside to plug in an extension cord, or we would have probably met each other face to face. You aren't supposed to yell or run, or look them in the eye, but back slowly away, looking noncahlant in some other direction, I suppose. Yeah right!!!! I'd a probaby yelled and took off for the front door!
Title: Re: Logging and sawing
Post by: awemawson on August 31, 2015, 11:16:40 AM
Oh Heck - Steve's going into mass bow production ... is there going to be an uprising in Vermont  :lol:

Steve nice logging saw - do I remember it from a long time ago, and it was what you used for the timbers for your house ?

Title: Re: Logging and sawing
Post by: vtsteam on August 31, 2015, 12:41:39 PM
Yes sir, Andrew, built my house with lumber from that saw (and an earlier Alaskan chainsaw mill -- ugh that was hard!).

I am thinking about trying my hand at a possible commercial wood product, but not bows. But beyond that, I still haven't got hardwood floors yet in all rooms of the house, so I'm just building up a stash of wood to dry for any purposes that might come up. They say air drying takes an year/inch thickness. I think it's a little faster than that, though, here. I'm going to cut a variety to have on hand. Next hardwoods will be red oak and white ash.

The hemlock and white pine softwoods are for construction projects. Plus they were trees that needed to come down. The pine was standing deadwood.
Title: Re: Logging and sawing
Post by: awemawson on August 31, 2015, 01:35:13 PM
Steve I do envy your ready source of woods - they would cost an absolute bomb over here  :bugeye:
Title: Re: Logging and sawing
Post by: vtsteam on August 31, 2015, 09:59:45 PM
Wish I could share it, too, Andrew with you guys. There's plenty for everybody. Darned Atlantic! I could use some coals from Newcastle, too. Or coke for the furnace I mean.
Title: Re: Logging and sawing
Post by: jcs0001 on September 03, 2015, 11:15:19 AM

Very nicely built saw and winch.  I've used an alaskan mill with a huge old husky saw in it to rip some elm logs into boards but it is certainly a lot of hard work.  Even when the chain is sharpened for ripping it takes a lot of time, noise and a heck of a lot of sawdust.  I did this some years ago and thus have a bit of a stash of dried 2 to 3 in. elm rough cut.  It is nice to have around I must admit.

I am envious of your selection of wood species as we don't get much in the line of hardwoods here - unless it's domestically grown shade trees.