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Author Topic: Recomendation for chain saw & chain for wood slabs  (Read 436 times)

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Offline Mike in Texas

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Recomendation for chain saw & chain for wood slabs
« on: October 25, 2017, 03:51:35 pm »
In Texas here.  I make slab furniture, and currently using a local saw mill to cut slabs.

I would like to cut across the larger trees for rounds 32 to 36 inches.  So logs are on the ground or up a few inches o 4x4 's.  Cutting 3 1/2 or wider.   Need to cut 36 inches so I get a single surface.   In a single log 7 ft long I might get 20 to 25 cuts.  Maybe use the saw 2 days a month.  Besides the chain saw , any information on fixtures (if they exist) to cuts rounds more safer or accurately would be of interest.

I want to do the job within reasonable cost, and at this point I do'nt know what is.

All comments appreciated.  Thanks

Offline DelawhereJoe

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Re: Recomendation for chain saw & chain for wood slabs
« Reply #1 on: October 25, 2017, 05:21:02 pm »
For cutting logs that big you should go with something that it rated to pull a 36" bar but the prices are high for them. Cheapest to run a 36" bar is an Echo cs-800p at around $850, Makita/Dolmar 7900 runs $850-$1000 or so,the Stihl 661 Husqvarna 390-395 would be the best but are the most expensive.
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Offline Mike in Texas

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Re: Recomendation for chain saw & chain for wood slabs
« Reply #2 on: October 25, 2017, 06:13:38 pm »
Very helpful, if I change to 32 inch, will that give me more choices?

Offline DelawhereJoe

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Re: Recomendation for chain saw & chain for wood slabs
« Reply #3 on: October 25, 2017, 11:20:51 pm »
Also remember there is used at a cheaper price and used & abused that needs rebuilding at an even cheaper price.
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Offline sawguy21

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Re: Recomendation for chain saw & chain for wood slabs
« Reply #4 on: October 26, 2017, 12:01:53 pm »
 :D Isn't that the truth. With a 32" bar you might get away with an MS460 or 372XP but you are really not gainning anything. For your use you need torque and lots of it.
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Online TKehl

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Re: Recomendation for chain saw & chain for wood slabs
« Reply #5 on: October 26, 2017, 04:53:24 pm »
 ??? ???  Confused here.  Are you:

A.  Cutting lengthwise to get boards?
B.  Crosscutting to get round and oval "cookies".  (Roundish and thin where the grain looks like a bullseye.)

It sounds like B, but most people do more of A.

You can use a skip tooth chain to run a longer bar than a saw is rated for, but it will cut slower.    Sounds like that would be an acceptable tradeoff for your situation.

I'm not aware of a jig other than a stack cutter, and they are expensive.  Fabbing something wouldn't be that hard though.  I'm thinking an Alaskan mill that mounts to a couple sliding vertical posts so that gravity would do most of the cutting work as the log lays on the ground.

At only 2 days a month, I would make sure the ROI pencils out before making purchases. 
Lucas 6-13+slabber, Mr. Sawmill bandmill, orange chainsaws, JD SSL, Case Backhoe, farm tractors, trailers, and 150ish acres of trees.  Fledgling woodshop with CNC router, laser engraver, Woodmaster 712, and a Berlin 108 moulder (project).  Oh, and a lovely (patient) wife and four offbearers.

Offline DelawhereJoe

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Re: Recomendation for chain saw & chain for wood slabs
« Reply #6 on: October 26, 2017, 09:12:44 pm »
Also depending on where you are and whats around, you could always look into renting one for a weekend and just cutting everything then.
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Offline smoked

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Re: Recomendation for chain saw & chain for wood slabs
« Reply #7 on: October 27, 2017, 08:01:54 am »
I have cleaned up cookies with my Alaskan mill running it horizontal.  Obviously you can't stand up and work on a 7 foot log so might have to waist a few cuts to get manageable chunks.  I am only getting 29.5" out of my 36" bar because of the sprocket so keep that in mind.  Cross cutting would be easier on the saw than ripping slabs so I too think you may be able to get away with something less than 90cc.

If I could find a .50 36" solid nose bar (stihl) I could get more like 32 or 33" out of the rest of my current hardware but that does not seem to be a common item.  Honestly, ripping 29" hardwood is a pretty decent chore for my 661 and the operator too:-) 
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Offline Kbeitz

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Re: Recomendation for chain saw & chain for wood slabs
« Reply #8 on: October 28, 2017, 09:57:34 pm »
I have no idea what I'm talking about but I would like to throw in my $0.02.
What kind of HP does the Echo cs-800p , Makita/Dolmar 7900 , Stihl 661 Husqvarna
390-395 have ? Why could you not use a 20 hp lawn mower engine with a chainsaw
hub mounted on the engine shaft ? I'm now gathering parts to make a chainsaw chop
saw but I don't see why you could not cut slabs with it if 20 hp is enough. Just asking.
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Online Ianab

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Re: Recomendation for chain saw & chain for wood slabs
« Reply #9 on: October 29, 2017, 01:33:30 am »
Why could you not use a 20 hp lawn mower engine with a chainsaw
hub mounted on the engine shaft ?

You end up with something like a Peterson / Lucas dedicated slabber. You would need to gear up the shaft speed, so they use a jack shaft and pulleys to get the sprocket speed up to around chainsaw speed. This also isolated the engines crank bearings from the jarring of the chain. (It's just spinning a pulley / rubber drive belt like it's designed to)

And you have significantly more HP. The Dolmar 7900 has a bit over 6 hp, I assume the others are similar.

The Peterson slabber comes with a 22 or 27hp 4 stroke engine, but that can handle a 6ft log. Smaller logs would need less power.
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