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Author Topic: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)  (Read 10905 times)

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Offline Engineer

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #40 on: May 18, 2015, 03:22:41 pm »
So I figured I'd unearth this thread since I started it.  Still haven't bought a mill but I got a bit of a surprise (and that may be an understatement) last week. 

Bit of a backstory:  my boys have been involved with Scouting for years (oldest is 23, youngest is 10) and we have faithfully attended every summer camp, every spring and fall camporee, etc.  This fall, the District camporee is a "lumberjack" theme - they are looking for experts who can volunteer their time to demonstrate chainsaw operation, chainsaw carving, portable sawmills, and the Paul Smith's College competition team is supposed to be there to demo their lumberjack skills.

So my wife, finding out about this, says to me, "Are you gonna get a new sawmill?", and I was at a loss for words as I had been figuring out how to discuss this with her for some months (it's a big expense, after all) and she says "the Scout thing would be a good excuse to justify buying a new mill, right?" - say WHAT?  You want me to drop five to seven grand on a new mill just to show it off to a bunch of Boy Scouts?  Never mind all the other good reasons for owning a new mill.  But all I could say was, "Honey if you think I should get a new mill then I will start shopping again". 

I think I have narrowed it down to either a Norwood LM29 or WoodMizer LT-15, neither of which will have a trailer.  Is there any specific characteristics of either mill that give it a distinct advantage over the other?  If I was in the market for a larger mill I would definitely go with the Wood-Mizer brand but the race is too close to call on these two models.  I will be sawing small logs, 12-16" diameter, sometimes short logs 4-6' long, and mostly 4/4, 5/4 and 6/4 lumber.  The occasional 4x4 or 6x6 beam.  Nothing over 12' long.  Obviously I will have to transport it at least once, to cut boards for the Scout camp. 

Offline Ox

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #41 on: May 18, 2015, 04:30:47 pm »
Geez!  That's good news right there!
I have zero experience with either of these mills but I have heard good things about both of them.  If it were me, I'd look to see which one would have the closest and easiest parts supply, dealer network, etc. 
If you need a part, is it 2 days away or a week away?
If there was a dealer an hour's drive away from me I would go with that one.
P.S.  I'm afraid there's no hope for you.  You're going to be joining the ranks of sawyers.  It's a funny, strange place.   :)
K.I.S.S. - Keep It Simple Stupid
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1989 GMC 3500 4x4 diesel dump and plow truck, 1964 Oliver 1600 Industrial with Parsons loader and backhoe, 1986 Zetor 5211, Cat's Claw sharpener, single tooth setter, homemade Linn Lumber 1900 style mill, old tools

Online beenthere

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #42 on: May 18, 2015, 04:32:59 pm »
And Engineer... did you see the "for sale" ad that just came up?

http://www.forestryforum.com/board/index.php/topic,83392.0.html
south central Wisconsin
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Offline Dave Shepard

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #43 on: May 18, 2015, 04:47:40 pm »
That mill is supposedly sold. Being picked up today.

I can't give you any unbiased advice. I'm a WM fan.
Wood-Mizer LT40HDD51-WR Wireless, Kubota L48, Honda Rincon 650, TJ208 G-S, and a 60"LogRite!

Offline Verticaltrx

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #44 on: May 18, 2015, 06:13:58 pm »
I was down to the LM29 vs the LT15, went with the LT15 for a number of reasons.

-bed looked sturdier

-positive lock on the saw head height (if you notice in the Norwood videos the saw head sometimes drops a tiny bit when they engage the blade). The indexing wheel on the LT15 is really quick for sawing 1-2" stock once you get the hang of it.

-more feed options, you can push it, crank it (for the wide cuts) or add power feed

-larger standard engine, the new LT15's come with a 19hp Kohler

-company support, WM has so much info out there to help the sawyer, truly a top notch company. You can tell that a ton of engineering went into these mills to make them easy and efficient to operate.

All that being said, I think the Norwood's are a quality mill as well. I'm sure I would have been quite happy with one, just a few small differences led me to WM, as well as the $6995 spring promo they were offering on the LT15's.

Wood-Mizer LT15G19

Offline Engineer

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #45 on: May 18, 2015, 06:20:06 pm »
Geez!  That's good news right there!
I have zero experience with either of these mills but I have heard good things about both of them.  If it were me, I'd look to see which one would have the closest and easiest parts supply, dealer network, etc. 
If you need a part, is it 2 days away or a week away?
If there was a dealer an hour's drive away from me I would go with that one.
P.S.  I'm afraid there's no hope for you.  You're going to be joining the ranks of sawyers.  It's a funny, strange place.   :)

Ox, I'm long past the point of hope.  Many of the long-time members here know I'm a former Logosol M7 owner and Wood-Mizer LT-30 owner and have been mill-less for several years now.   I have plenty of experience with Wood-Mizer and their New York dealership, they're great people.  My dilemma is that both mills appear to have very similar capabilities but I don't know diddly-squat about the Norwood mills other than browsing their website and watching YouTube videos.  I don't think I'd regret purchasing either one but I want to make sure.

I wouldn't hesitate buying a used mill if I were able to get a good look at it.  That's how I bought my first and second sawmills, used.  The Wood-Mizer needed a LOT of work and WM New York did right by me.  Unfortunately I've been looking for quite a while and nothing that appealed to me has been available relatively close by.

I am going to call Norwood, since I can't make it to their open house this year, and see if I can find a nearby owner that will demo their mill for me.  I've passed up at least three opportunities to see their mills in action at the Northeast Forest Products Expo, and am kicking myself for not looking at all of my options.

Offline Ox

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #46 on: May 18, 2015, 07:29:50 pm »
I thought you might have had a mill after "remembering" old posts.  Problem is my memory is inherently poor.  Figured I'd play it safe anyways. 
At least you're checking out other options as far as mill shopping.  That's tough to do after owning a certain brand and liking it.  I find myself being loyal if something performs as I expect.
K.I.S.S. - Keep It Simple Stupid
Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without
1989 GMC 3500 4x4 diesel dump and plow truck, 1964 Oliver 1600 Industrial with Parsons loader and backhoe, 1986 Zetor 5211, Cat's Claw sharpener, single tooth setter, homemade Linn Lumber 1900 style mill, old tools

Offline samandothers

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #47 on: May 18, 2015, 10:06:44 pm »
I look forward to hearing which way you go.  Good for you helping and being involved with Scouts!  I enjoyed the time with my son doing scout stuff.  He learned a lot of great things as did I!

Offline ex-Engineer Wannabe

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #48 on: May 21, 2015, 01:24:54 pm »
Please check your Inbox for a PM, Jon.
"Measure twice, cut once" -- Don't know who coined this one, but he was pretty wise.

Offline ForestGump

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #49 on: September 10, 2015, 09:34:37 pm »
Im in the market for a mill as well, ive seen a local operator struggle to dial in his WM and after he did the cutting I helped my buddy stack his lumber and there was a terrible wave in many of the boards: going from 4/4 - 6/4 in the same 16' board. Is this normal?
Woodmizer seems like a more "brand name" purchase but I was not impressed after seeing the results...Im considering these same two mills as mentioned earlier Lt15 and the Lm29. I want something on a trailer that is extremely quick to start milling- no tweaking and measuring, just a solid bed/blade mount that is always reliable.
Let the wood times roll!

Offline ForestGump

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #50 on: September 10, 2015, 09:47:17 pm »
Also- what kind of mills can acomadate a slabber and are there any entry level mills that can cut on both passes? (without having to walk head back before cutting again)
Let the wood times roll!

Offline Magicman

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #51 on: September 10, 2015, 09:58:35 pm »
Im in the market for a mill as well, ive seen a local operator struggle to dial in his WM and after he did the cutting I helped my buddy stack his lumber and there was a terrible wave in many of the boards: going from 4/4 - 6/4 in the same 16' board. Is this normal?
Quick answer.....NO.  If that "local operator's" WM was properly "dialed in", it would saw true.

No offense intended, but some folks are not mechanically inclined enough to own, adjust, or operate any brand sawmill. 
Knothole Sawmill, LLC     '98 Wood-Mizer LT40SuperHydraulic   WM Million BF Club Member   WM Pro Sawyer Network

Never allow your "need" to make money to exceed your "desire" to provide quality service.....The Magicman

Offline Magicman

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #52 on: September 10, 2015, 10:02:54 pm »
are there any entry level mills that can cut on both passes?
I do not know of anything less than a full blown commercial sawmill that uses a blade with teeth on both sides that would saw on the "return trip". 
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Offline taylorsmissbeehaven

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #53 on: September 10, 2015, 10:19:36 pm »
I have to agree with Lynn. I have operated an lt 15 since 2010. It has impressed me again and again. Its a simple machine that accomplishes a great task. Most problems I have encountered have been due to operator error! ;D I am biased as a WM owner, but am very satisfied, Brian
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Offline 4x4American

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #54 on: September 15, 2015, 08:54:47 am »
Sooooo, Engineer, did ya get a mill??   ;D
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Offline dboyt

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #55 on: September 15, 2015, 11:10:23 am »
I've got Norwood's HD36, but was also impressed with the LM29 for the price.  I've talked with quite a number of LM29 owners and never heard mention of problem with the head moving.  In fact, not having to lock down the head for each cut is one less thing the sawyer has to do when using it.  The clamping procedure is simple and, as long as the mill is well supported, it takes a lot of abuse.  I also liked that you could determine what options you want (track extensions, toe boards, etc.  Only parts I've needed have been blades, and they arrived so quickly that it was much easier to order them and have them delivered than it would have been to drive to a dealer and pick them up.
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Offline Engineer

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #56 on: September 15, 2015, 05:23:35 pm »
Sooooo, Engineer, did ya get a mill??   ;D

No, not yet.  Am working on finding out as much information as I can now on the EZ Boardwalk mills.  At the rate I am going it will probably be a spring purchase.

Offline Weekend_Sawyer

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #57 on: April 13, 2017, 01:47:17 pm »
It's spring! Did you ever get a mill?  ???
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Offline Percy

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #58 on: April 15, 2017, 01:16:24 pm »
   But all I could say was, "Honey if you think I should get a new mill then I will start shopping again". 


You should write a book for all the guys who want mills but have a hard time with the significant others... The quote I took from your post is classic.  ;D ;D
Its not the "years in your life" but the 'life in your years" that matters...Abe Lincoln

Offline Engineer

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Re: WM vs. Norwood vs Hud-Son vs. ? (Looking for a NEW MILL!)
« Reply #59 on: April 19, 2017, 02:16:43 pm »
Did you ever get a mill?

Nope.  Finances never panned out.  Probably won't be this year either.