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Author Topic: Milled my first boards today!  (Read 1416 times)

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Offline customcutter01

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Milled my first boards today!
« on: December 13, 2017, 09:23:37 PM »
I bought a used Cook's AC-36 the week after Thanksgiving, but I've been sick with a bad cold/sinus infection. I finally felt up to getting some logs and trying the mill out yesterday and things didn't go so well. We were right at dark getting set up and it just didn't work out. I would start the cut about an inch deep and by the time I had cut 12-15" the blade had dived down to 3-4 inches. The log had tried to turn because the belt was loose on the hyd pump, and the log dog wasn't tight, etc, etc, etc. Any way we couldn't figure it out an hour after dark so we finally quit.

I went back today checked the level which wasn't exact but wasn't all that bad. So I decided to change the blade for a brand new one. It cut's like a dream, like a knife through butter. Cut up 3 logs, then had a bad ending.

We put on a log that had a much larger tapered section near the roots. I didn't raise the toe board, and started cutting about one inch into the log. By the time I realized I wasn't going to clear the cross bar with the larger end, I tried to back up. Bad, Bad, BAD mistake. It pulled the blade off the rollers, and also the draw back fingers jammed into the log and jacked the head into the air. I wound up breaking the blade but learned several valuable and costly lessons.

Use your toe boards.
Don't always start your cuts on the small end of the log. If you have a large taper, cut that end first and work your way down into the log.
If your not actually using your drag back fingers tie them up out of the way.
Don't try to back your blade out of a long cut, especially if you can't control the speed. Back up a little and cut it off with a chainsaw or whatever method is safe, to remove a trapped blade.

Other than that it was the most fun I've had with my clothes on in a long, long time. 8)

Sorry, no pics yet, you'll just have to trust me.

thanks,
Ken
Husqvarna 350 decked,ported,pop-up piston by me
Husqvarna 450
Husqvarna 570 rebuilding now
Husqvarna 262XP
Stihl 210
Cooks AC-36 Hyd Bandsaw Mill
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Offline dgdrls

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2017, 09:28:10 PM »
Sounds like your off and running 8) and yes, bands don't back-up very well out of a cut :o

be safe and take your time,

D

Offline YellowHammer

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #2 on: December 13, 2017, 09:29:32 PM »
Congratulations.  Sounds like a good day.
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Offline Kbeitz

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #3 on: December 13, 2017, 09:49:21 PM »
Iíve backed out of a cut a few times.  I️ drive a wedge in the cut before backing out.
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Offline starmac

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2017, 02:32:54 AM »
You should have gone ahead and tried to cut a backstop, just to get that out of the way too.
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Offline WV Sawmiller

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2017, 09:07:40 AM »
   I call it paying your dues.   :D

  While you're at it go ahead and leave the side supports down and roll a log all the way across and off the mill then leave the toeboard up and cut you some long wedges.

   I'm with kbeitz on the wedges. I take a set of felling wedges with me on every job to use for backing out if something goes wrong and I get stuck.

   Just keep on sawing and keep us informed. Congratulations.
Howard Green
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Offline Percy

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #6 on: December 14, 2017, 09:13:52 AM »
From what Ive seen over the years, thats a pretty uptown mill you got there. Congrats.

My first couple weeks sawing was similar to yours. Im seriously considering changing my middle name from Michael to Mistake  ;D ;D
Its not the "years in your life" but the 'life in your years" that matters...Abe Lincoln

Offline petefrom bearswamp

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #7 on: December 14, 2017, 09:17:22 AM »
Take it from all the experienced sawyers on this forum.
You will learn by making them just what mistakes are.
even after years of experience.
I think all mills have some cut marks in various places.
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Offline 50 Acre Jim

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #8 on: December 14, 2017, 09:29:37 AM »
Iíve backed out of a cut a few times.  I️ drive a wedge in the cut before backing out.
Yep, I have a couple of them in that special area where I keep those tools nobody told me I would need!  About the only thing I can add is to go back and saw into your side supports too.  Get that out of the way right up front.  :-)  Have fun!
Constantly reinventing the wheel...

Offline Darrel

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #9 on: December 14, 2017, 09:31:42 AM »
I'm the 3rd owner of my mill, and all 3 of us were new to milling. That poor old thing has battle scars.
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The winds of change are blowing at hurricane force and I don't like it but good shall come even though I see not how.  I'll do everything in my power to see that it does.

Offline Percy

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #10 on: December 14, 2017, 09:37:48 AM »
I'm the 3rd owner of my mill, and all 3 of us were new to milling. That poor old thing has battle scars  character
Fixt  ;D
Its not the "years in your life" but the 'life in your years" that matters...Abe Lincoln

Offline samandothers

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #11 on: December 14, 2017, 06:14:23 PM »
All mills have character! :D

Offline DPatton

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #12 on: December 14, 2017, 06:41:32 PM »
That's a great story customcutter. You did indeed learn a lot of lessons for just 3 logs but you will remember them well. Rest assured there will be occasional relapese's where you will need to repeat those mistakes from time to time just so you can remember what happened last time!  :)
For your own personal safety I suggest you continue to operate your new mill with your clothes on until you have a few more hours experience ;D ;D ;D
Good luck with your new mill and keep posting your adventures for us to enjoy.
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Offline Brad_bb

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #13 on: December 14, 2017, 10:20:38 PM »
Congrats, the first ones are pretty cool.
It took me about 2 years to learn to trim the logs properly with chainsaw BEFORE putting them on the mill.  It took me a year of guys on here telling me to mill small end first before I started doing it.  It took another couple months for me to learn to go down to the butt and and take a couple slices off the remaining flare to make sure it would clear the mill head when taking the real slab cut.

You've also now learned NOT to back out of a cut without inserting some wedges to create clearance, and do it with the band not running.  IF you're edging a couple boards, you can usually get away with backing out.  Like when I'm making stickers and I get too aggressive on my first cut and realize I can move up and get another sticker out before I cut this off.

All of my uprights have scars, but none of my clamps so far.
Anything someone can design, I can sure figure out how to fix!
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Offline customcutter01

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #14 on: December 16, 2017, 09:42:25 PM »
Thanks guys, I'm the third owner of this mill and the first upright has some "character" added by a previous owner.

We worked on trying to get the drip system to work properly today.  I hung a 15gal poly tank off an old sprayer off the front of the head rack, but it kept loosing suction because of an air leak.  Got to get than fixed.  We also fought fuel problems, could not get the motor to crank.  Tried everything, finally my cousins nephew (mechanic) came down.  It had been flooding out and running rich the last time.  He pulled the air filter tried to choke by placing his hand over it still would not prime.  Started checking fuel line, (which I had changed two sections thinking they were dry rotted) thought the fuel filter was plugged so we pulled it out of the line still couldn't prime the bulb up. I has a boat type tank and primer bulb it was hard as a rock.  We got to looking and the night before when the board pull back teeth had dug into the log they jacked the saw head up into the air and the fuel line got pinched between a bolt and the frame when the head came back down.   That's the kind of luck I have. :o   Pried the head up off the fuel line and she fired right up.  We finally got to do about 2 hours of milling after working on the mill for about 5 hours.

I learned another lesson today.  Even though you think you have backed up far enough add another couple of inches too it.  I lowered the mill head, with the blade about half on half off the end of the cant.  Needless to say the next cut nosedived on me in a few inches.  So I don't know if I dulled the blade or stretched it.  I hope it's not stretched and ruined. 

Any thoughts on the condition?

thanks, Ken
Husqvarna 350 decked,ported,pop-up piston by me
Husqvarna 450
Husqvarna 570 rebuilding now
Husqvarna 262XP
Stihl 210
Cooks AC-36 Hyd Bandsaw Mill
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Offline Percy

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #15 on: December 17, 2017, 10:05:00 AM »
Not sure about the blade as I cant see it. But wrecking blades is pretty much a constant in this line of work....for me anyways and maybe you too.  ;D ;D Thankfully they are relatively inexpensive. What I do to keep things in perspective is keep track of board footage per box of blades. Just roughly. I usually get around 50-60,000 boardfeet per box of 10 blades. Up here in Canada, a box of .055x1.5x184 inch x 13 degree Double hards cost 500.00 bucks with shipping. Works out to a penny per board foot. Which includes the blades wrecked by goofs, rocks , metal, etc.. Ive done better than that on many boxes but Ive done worse too...It all averages out.
Its not the "years in your life" but the 'life in your years" that matters...Abe Lincoln

Offline carhartted

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #16 on: December 17, 2017, 10:38:26 AM »
I can certainly relate. Just cut my first log on a new to me LT-40HD after working on it for a week. Pulled the clutch handle and the blade fell right off. I had forgotten to tension the blade. Fixed that then the blade was diving really bad right into the cut, half the blade teeth were wiped out. New blade and it cut great. Then it did it again. Finally figured out I had put the idler wheel on backwards and the blade was hitting the front cover. Ran it with the covers off and it cut great. Now I have to put the wheel in correctly and realign the entire head. It's all worth it though, don't think I'll use the chainsaw mill again.
Here's to making sawdust.

Offline thecfarm

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #17 on: December 17, 2017, 10:45:27 AM »
carhartted,I betcha you did not saw with your chainsaw mill with out a few mistakes either.   ;)   :)
It's all in learning what to and not to do.
Yes,you will like the bandsaw mill. But saying that,each mill has it's time that it shines in wood.
Kinda like I have 2 tractors. They each have a job to do and they shine at that job.
And I have 2 chainsaws.  ;D
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Offline Southside logger

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #18 on: December 17, 2017, 10:53:16 AM »
Customcutter -

Was your band turning when it hit the cant?  I did that once - broke the band right in half.  If it was not turning then maybe it just knocked the set out really badly. Sounds like you are on the accelerated learning curve and will get this all out of the way right off the bat rather than dragging it out like I did. 

Make sure you forget to clamp your board tight when doing one last cut on say a 2" thick piece of stock.  That one is always great entertainment. 
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Offline hopm

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Re: Milled my first boards today!
« Reply #19 on: December 17, 2017, 01:26:18 PM »
Never thought everybody else made the same mistakes Ive made through the years.....makes me feel alot better.....just wish I'd learn to stop!!!

 


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