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Author Topic: Scales - I think I may be unconfused now  (Read 2256 times)

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Offline dad2nine

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Scales - I think I may be unconfused now
« on: December 04, 2007, 11:03:32 am »
Put in a call to WM to verify my thoughts about scales. My mill came with a regular inch scale, I set it on 1" per the regular inch scale and I get a board 7/8" to a little less than 1" thick ok great I understand kerf loss and all.

I also have the hardwood 1/4" scale I set it to 4/4 and I come out with a board in between 1 1/8" to a little less than 1 1/4" thick.

Wood Mizer also sells a regular 4/4 scale which I don't have but they said it will produce a board between 1" ~ 1/8" thick.

I asked the WM guy about the difference between the two 1/4" scales (assuming I would want to cut a 4/4 board) could be considered a softwood vers hardwood scale. He said that's one way of looking at it. Softwood 1/4 scale would produce 1" ~ 1/8" thick and  hardwood 1/4 scale 1 1/8" ~ 1 1/4" thick because softwood has a tendency to shrink less than hardwood during drying.

Then he mentioned I should factor in a 1/4" kerf loss, and the graduation differences of lumber size plus 3/8" in the hardwood scale and lumber size plus 1/4" in the softwood scale to allow for kerf loss. Franky I have yet to see my WM take a 1/4 kerf out of anything, even when I'm throwing chunks instead of dust out of softwood like SYP I doubt it's hogging out a 1/4" kerf. I think it's more along the lines of a 1/8" but have not actually measured it.

I had been taking lumber to Scott Smith to be kiln and from my own personal experience 4/4 cut on my WM will clean up @ around 7/8 of an inch thick once he dries it. I've often thought I may be cutting a we bit on the heavy side, but then again it's nice not to have a bunch of cull either. Better safe than sorry is what I decided on.

My question is I'm in a log yard with 3 other bandsaw mills, they cut by the standard inch scale and by logs by the international scale. When they set their mill heads on 1 inch they saw a board out right about 7/8" thick. I can match that by cutting to my regular inch scale also. But the problem comes in when I need to buy logs from the log yard owner. We'll stick it with the international scale and I'll cut it on the hardwood 1/4 scale and it comes out very close assuming it's a good clean straight log. But he's always saying to me "if you cut it right it should yield some number over". This is a very frustrating comment and I've tried a number of times to explain how it won't, he'll comment "I know nothing about kiln drying" and it just seems he's not getting it or doesn't want to get it. Now I can see if I were cutting it by the regular inch scale how it might it might, but for the life of me I can make the log yield what he says it should. This has became a source of contention between us in the past and I would like to avoid it if at all possible in the future. What I've done in the mean time is started bringing my own logs in scaled by the Doyle which seems to work out very well for me I have a pretty good comfort factor with Doyle, but there still is the comments how my boards are to thick and should have got more out of that log. Granted I'm a newbe and could be sawing all wrong... my rational is I guess it's all in what market your cutting for, I cut mainly grade furniture stock and they mainly cut  mainly construction material.

Please chime in here - I would like to get a better understanding of scales and how everyone else it cutting. It could be I'm all wet here and if so I would really like to know it.

Thanks

Offline Radar67

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Re: Scales - I think I may be unconfused now
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2007, 11:17:39 am »
IMO, he is figuring the log with the standard inch scale and counting on the board thickness to be 7/8 inch. If that is what he wants, give it to him. He is the one who has to worry about what comes out of the kiln. Just my .02
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Offline Dan_Shade

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Re: Scales - I think I may be unconfused now
« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2007, 11:22:36 am »
is he paying you for the boards you cut?  or just giving you a hard time?

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Offline Sprucegum

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Re: Scales - I think I may be unconfused now
« Reply #3 on: December 04, 2007, 12:20:00 pm »
Once you buy that log - its yours , you can cut it any Dang way you want  ;D

Your rationale sounds right to me too, your market is different than their's and calls for a different thickness. Don't let that fella get yer goat.

Offline raycon

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Re: Scales - I think I may be unconfused now
« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2007, 12:42:42 pm »
If buying logs Doyle scale locally I expect to pay 30% more for them. No one locally besides band mill users use it.  International scale is more realistic of what the log yields.  Over run small diameter stuff  (14" tips) international scale not going to happen maybe 10% but not more. I saw 4/4 +1/8 in hardwoods.

I had an order for a mess of 8x8's last week. Called a friend who sent over logs. I asked for 14" tips min 10-13.5 is what I received. What I did was scaled the small stuff as it went on the mill and tallied the boards that came off.  I was right at the scale occasionally and on a few under. In the photo you can see the logs behind the mill.   My bigger problem was wane on the posts corners since the framer wants 8.25x 8.25 and hes not dressing the timbers down.
Going forward in your spot I'd scale common tip sizes and see where you're loosing the board  footage if at all. 14" tip red oak here sell for $300/1000.  12" tips are 150-200/1000.  Might be that you can adjust what  you are paying based on tip size.

Lot of stuff..

Offline dad2nine

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Re: Scales - I think I may be unconfused now
« Reply #5 on: December 04, 2007, 01:43:19 pm »
I apprciate ya'lls response. I'm always interested in log prices because prices change based on who you talk to. When you mention 14" and up red oak @ 300/1000 that's international scale and delivered to the mill right?

Thanks

Offline raycon

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Re: Scales - I think I may be unconfused now
« Reply #6 on: December 04, 2007, 02:38:00 pm »
Heres an outdated price list put out by one of the bigger mills in my area.
http://www.hullforest.com/php/pages.php5?dir=lumber&page=saw_veneer_log_prices

Locally a lot of the saw logs leave the state and country. The price there leaving at is double what's printed in this list if what I hear is accurate. (its probably not accurate what I hear that is)
 My log buying  is simple if I know a logger/forester is working in my area and I need something I'll call and say heres what I can pay do you have it at this price? If I'm low they'll say I can do it for xxx/mbf if high I get my logs asap.





 

Lot of stuff..

Offline Ron Wenrich

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Re: Scales - I think I may be unconfused now
« Reply #7 on: December 04, 2007, 05:33:04 pm »
For 4/4, I'm cutting 1 1/8".  That is what my buyers want.  Some guys will cut at 1 1/16", but you can get into trouble with things being too thin.  That savings you thought you were getting will be gone if they start throwing thin boards out.  Besides, buyer's aren't real enthusiastic about those thinner boards, and can grade accrodingly.  So, if you're closer to 1 1/4", I'd say you should pare it back a bit.  You might have to change the way you're sawing or make a new type of stick for your Mizer.

When you get into heavier stock, such as 8/4 and up, you should be over by 1/4" to allow for shrinkage.  The timber frame stock I have cut has been abou 3/8" over in pine.

I'm not sure what type of setworks you folks use on a bandmill.  I've always run a circle mill.  Every circle mill I have run has a setworks that will pull a certain amount of wood for a board.  If gives you a good, consistent board every pull.  That helps sell your lumber.

Cutting patterns will also dictate whether you get an overrun or not.  The last time I checked, I was pulling an overrun on International, and running a 1/4" kerf.  But, I don't waste time with lower grade material.  I throw it into blocking or ties.  That will up your footage, since you're not taking out kerf and lumber thickness overage. 

Log size will also have something to do with your overrun.  The bigger the logs, the easier it is to make the scale.  If you are running a lot of small logs, your scale will be different than if you are running larger logs. 

You say you are in a log yard.  Is this a sawmill or a lumber broker? 
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Offline dad2nine

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Re: Scales - I think I may be unconfused now
« Reply #8 on: December 04, 2007, 07:25:42 pm »
Ron, your offering some good solid advice - I really appreciate it. I'm in a sawmill / firewood log yard along with three other band mills. It's a family run operation and is their bread and butter, they adopted me in as the red headed stepchild I guess... I think I'll leave my WM scale alone it seems to be cutting pretty well.

Ray here is a sawmill / log yard that's closer to me albeit they are located up in the mountains and a little cheaper than what I'm paying for good grade 1 and above sawlogs. It's current and a good reference for me.

http://www.sunrisesawmill.com/logprices.htm

I really try and not to mess with anything for resale that doesn't have atleast 3 clear faces and is atleast 14" diameter. Unless someone orders a bunch of 6x6's or something like that, then I'll go smaller. And of course if a customer brings logs for me to saw, that's when I become a real slut and saw just about anything as long as we can agree on price. I find it very interesting how some mills pay more than others and at different times. I guess it's what they need at the time and how badly they need it (supply and demand).

Thanks

Offline Ron Wenrich

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Re: Scales - I think I may be unconfused now
« Reply #9 on: December 05, 2007, 05:52:35 am »
With prices like those, he wouldn't be buying any logs in my area.  We exported 13 loads of white oak the other month for triple his log price. 

Mill prices depend on several different factors.  The biggest one should be yield.  How well the lumber grades out is pretty dependent on the quality of timber in your area.  Another factor is how well the lumber is manufactured.  Poorly manufactured lumber is reflected by what the buyers will pay you.  What other mills in the area are paying is another factor.

Your WM gauge will work as long as there isn't a problem on the lumber end. 
Never under estimate the power of stupid people in large groups.