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Author Topic: Changing my sawmill setup  (Read 2281 times)

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Online Deese

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Changing my sawmill setup
« on: March 07, 2017, 11:30:56 am »
I am searching for some good, practical suggestions on what I have attempted to describe below.

I am changing my sawmill setup to minimize the need for a tractor to unload/load logs. It's a 10 minute drive (on the old Massey) to my setup and this is becoming a real problem. Here are a few pictures for you to see how I was currently set up:
 

  

  

 
 I took the sawmill off the elevated platform, repositioned it on blocks closer to the ground, and added the 10' track extension this past Saturday. Now capable of sawing up to 22' length. I forgot to take pics of the mill with the extension added. The elevated log deck will be removed and from now on, the logs will be on the ground. Back the trailer into position, lift the end of the logs with a winch, and pull forward. Logs will land on 4x4's for easier maneuvering with LOGRITE cant hooks.

People are going to want 20'+ beams. It is just a matter of time and they are going to be heavy. So, I've got to figure out a simple and inexpensive way to remove heavy beams from the mill onto a trailer without the use of a FEL. I'm thinking of rolling the beam (using cant hooks) off the opposite side of the mill onto some 4x4's, then somehow lift it with pulleys to be loaded onto a trailer. My brother's JD has forks, but again, my goal is to be as self sufficient as possible. Buying a forklift is not an option for me at this point.

Any practical suggestions on the best way to do this?

EDIT: The attached pictures are not current. The trees on the offloading side of the mill have been removed, so there is plenty of space to do whatever is needed in that area.

 
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Offline Rougespear

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2017, 11:36:06 am »
Can a modified drag-back feature be made to work?  Ie: pull the timber off the end of the mill, perhaps up an inclined roller conveyor?
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Offline mad murdock

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2017, 12:07:29 pm »
One of the primary reasons I chose the mill I did when I upgraded from a CSM(which I still have the Granberg mk III), was the consideration of not having to handle logs and such so much. This led me to the swingblade option, which is the easiest way to ditch the need for a FEL, Band mills have their place, IMO, but a swing blade offers so much more, IMO, worth the thought.  Milling without having to turn a log is a mighty fine notion! 8)
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Offline ChugiakTinkerer

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2017, 12:25:26 pm »
I'd look into having some toe rollers and a 10' length of box roller track and just roll the beams straight off the end of the mill onto the trailer.  Something like this from Global Industrial has a capacity of 620 lbs per foot.

Edit: I see that's pretty much what Rougespear suggested.  If it's too much incline then the toe rollers can be raised higher (assuming you planned for that) to get the beam level with the end of the trailer.  A 22' beam of 8x8 would likely weigh what, around 600 lbs?  A few scissor jack toe rollers could raise it up enough to where you could roll it off the end onto the conveyor track.  Seems like it could work without too much investment in time or equipment.
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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2017, 02:04:57 pm »
Thanks fellas for your input. The toe rollers would be perfect if the track were higher off the ground (as shown in pics). However, the track is only a few inches off the ground. I'm thinking of some type of simple I Beam trolley setup. Maybe just one I Beam that overhangs part of the track, lift the wooden beam off the sawbed with a heavy duty strap (strapping in the center) and chain hoist, rotate the beam perpendicular to the I Beam support posts, push it until hanging over trailer, rotate beam parallel to trailer, lower onto trailer.

That should work, right?

EDIT: It won't work that way unless the I Beam was secured from above to allow the trolley so roll down the length of the I Beam.    smiley_dizzy
I found some good photos on the forum and I think I've got a game plan.
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Offline Gearbox

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2017, 03:38:56 pm »
Think about this a 16 ft. beam raised up 8 inches in the center will be [ what ] at the end ? 16 to 20 inches . Enough to fit the trailer under . A roller clamped to the back of the trailer at deck high . Stab it with your Log Rite and roll it on .
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Offline nativewolf

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #6 on: March 07, 2017, 04:02:46 pm »
One of the primary reasons I chose the mill I did when I upgraded from a CSM(which I still have the Granberg mk III), was the consideration of not having to handle logs and such so much. This led me to the swingblade option, which is the easiest way to ditch the need for a FEL, Band mills have their place, IMO, but a swing blade offers so much more, IMO, worth the thought.  Milling without having to turn a log is a mighty fine notion! 8)

How is the new mill?  You promised some pictures of it cutting, when do we get to see some chips flying?  I've been thinking about them so very curious about your next few months cutting.

Offline 47sawdust

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #7 on: March 07, 2017, 04:39:43 pm »
One of the reasons I went to the trouble of adding hyd.to my Lt30 was for the hyd. toe rollers for ease of handling large timbers by myself.The rollers and outfeed roller table were a big improvement.
 By lowering your mill you may have gained in one area(log loading)but you may have hindered the ability to add some toe rollers.Forum member Larry has pictures in his gallery of toe rollers he made that used a boat winch to raise and lower.I built a set for my previous mill and they worked well.i will try to find the link for you.
 A further thought is to build two additional bunks with a built in roller that could be lever actuated with a cam and detents to hold the roller in the desired position.Your lowered mill position would not hinder this operation.Just some backyard engineering to keep you out of trouble.
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Offline ljohnsaw

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #8 on: March 07, 2017, 04:53:34 pm »
I haven't completed it yet but I'm making a trolley that rides on my mill track (similar to the head) with a electric winch (or a hand crank).  Lift the log or beam, run it down to the end of the track.  Half the beam would be hanging over your trailer.  Have some rollers on the trailer, drop the beam and re-pick at the far end and slide it the rest of the way on.
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Offline mad murdock

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #9 on: March 07, 2017, 05:48:42 pm »

[/quote]

How is the new mill?  You promised some pictures of it cutting, when do we get to see some chips flying?  I've been thinking about them so very curious about your next few months cutting.
[/quote]
We have been inundated with snow, cold, rain and also my 8-5 M-F work getting in the way.  I have the mill assembled and am working through some saw issues, as I am using my 075 to power the mill.  Havent gotten any chips cut yet, if the 075 wont cooperate, I will just get a 395XP and put on it. Plenty of power, and actually a bit more than the 075 according to specs.  I will post some pics as soon as I get it throwing chips, should be within the next week, I hope ???
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Offline ChugiakTinkerer

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #10 on: March 07, 2017, 05:53:47 pm »
A winch on the trailer pulling the beam off the end of the mill should have no problems pulling the beam up an inclined conveyer track.  Especially if you have a toe roller or two.  With the mill bed sitting on the ground you could raise the end of the beam with a jack and insert a roller underneath that rests on the mill.  It would probably take a little backyard engineering and may be no easier than the trolley that ljohnsaw is building.  What is the height difference from mill bed to trailer bed?
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Offline paul case

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #11 on: March 07, 2017, 06:59:04 pm »
I used a hand crank winch with a pulley up and behind the mill to pull the ties off the back end. It worked good and I didnt try to lift the whole cant but just one end of it. That keeps it from swinging around without my help. smiley_swinging_board I guess that way if you put your pulley far enough and high enough that it would load them in someones trailer as well.
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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #12 on: March 07, 2017, 08:40:31 pm »
I added 4 rollers to aid in moving heavy lumber to a trailer. I generally I work alone so I tried to make it easier on me. It's not a complete solution but I rarely have to lift as much as I once did.

I pick up the beam w/ the onboard winch loader and slip rollers under it. A 4th roller is height-adjustable to match the level on the trailer. I can either push by hand or use the sawhead. See pics.

 

 

 

 
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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #13 on: March 08, 2017, 12:53:56 am »
I really love you'r little railroad track railing. I wonder where
someone could buy track like that ?
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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #14 on: March 08, 2017, 06:50:27 am »
I really love you'r little railroad track railing. I wonder where
someone could buy track like that ?

Are you referring to the track the rollers roll on? If so, it's just 1 x 1 x 1/4 angle iron tack welded to the main beams.
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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #15 on: March 08, 2017, 07:45:56 am »
I really love you'r little railroad track railing. I wonder where
someone could buy track like that ?

Are you referring to the track the rollers roll on? If so, it's just 1 x 1 x 1/4 angle iron tack welded to the main beams.

In your first picture it looks like small RR- track. The top
of the track looks like 1/2 flat.
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Offline fishfighter

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #16 on: March 08, 2017, 08:18:57 am »
I haven't completed it yet but I'm making a trolley that rides on my mill track (similar to the head) with a electric winch (or a hand crank).  Lift the log or beam, run it down to the end of the track.  Half the beam would be hanging over your trailer.  Have some rollers on the trailer, drop the beam and re-pick at the far end and slide it the rest of the way on.

Some really great ideas in this thread. I was planning on installing a Ibeam/trolley system overhead.

Well, it looks like this is better idea. :D Once I get the saw mill shed close to finish, I was planning on added extra track. Heck, I might add 15' extra and add two trolley lifts and also a Ibeam overhead to help flip/move logs.

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #17 on: March 08, 2017, 08:44:34 am »
Thanks fellas for your input. The toe rollers would be perfect if the track were higher off the ground (as shown in pics). However, the track is only a few inches off the ground. I'm thinking of some type of simple I Beam trolley setup. Maybe just one I Beam that overhangs part of the track, lift the wooden beam off the sawbed with a heavy duty strap (strapping in the center) and chain hoist, rotate the beam perpendicular to the I Beam support posts, push it until hanging over trailer, rotate beam parallel to trailer, lower onto trailer.

That should work, right?

EDIT: It won't work that way unless the I Beam was secured from above to allow the trolley so roll down the length of the I Beam.    smiley_dizzy
I found some good photos on the forum and I think I've got a game plan.

If you want to go with the toe board roller idea, you could always lower your trailer to bed height.  Excavate a hole for the trailer to drop in at the end of your sawmill.  You can slide off the end of the mill onto the trailer.  Be sure to allow for drainage so you don't have a swamp to deal with.  I think some roller conveyors would be your easiest option.  You can handle some fairly large beams once you get them on wheels.

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Offline 47sawdust

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #18 on: March 08, 2017, 12:46:43 pm »
Kellogg,
 I think your idea is great.Simple and effective.You must have been a good teacher.
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Online Deese

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #19 on: March 09, 2017, 11:30:37 am »
Thanks everyone for the tips. Very thought provoking. I like several of the ideas and all seem like they would work.
A friend of mine has some heavy 10" wide H Beams that I can have for free. Just a few miles down the road. I am thinking I may take him up on his offer and try to make use of them. Going to look at them this weekend.

Also, I want to do some sawing at night after work. That's the only way I can catch up. Got around 60 logs on the ground and more on the way. All of these are to be sawn into 2x's, so lighting is more important than moving beams at this current time.

My setup is around 200' from the closest power source.
I just want something quick and easy to set up to begin with, and maybe run a trench later on down the road.

So, would 200' of regular duty (13-Amp) extension cord power 2 or 3 LED work lights? How many lumens should I aim for?
Thinking of mounting them high in the few trees that are still surrounding the mill.
I found some 5000 lumen work lights for around $90 each.  :P
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Online alanh

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #20 on: March 09, 2017, 12:36:32 pm »
I can`t help you on the 110v needs, I haven`t run power into my sawmill shed yet but I have to add, I put a 15" double row led 12v light on top of my utv for plowing, forgot where I got it but they are available relatively cheap these days, I think its around 10k lumens.... man-o-man does it light up some acreage, I point it where i want, leave the utv idling...works great

Online alanh

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #21 on: March 09, 2017, 12:37:33 pm »
maybe mount one on a tractor, or 12v battery with a solar panel or a wire off the mill alternator

Online Deese

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #22 on: March 09, 2017, 01:24:14 pm »
Alanh, I need that log arch.
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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #23 on: March 09, 2017, 02:16:06 pm »
It does work really well, really simple design, too, the way its shaped and with the wheel guards its really almost impossible for it to get hung up on anything,  over and around rocks, stumps , trees...

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #24 on: March 09, 2017, 03:26:12 pm »
The voltage drop will depend on how much current the lights draw.  If each light unit uses 60 watts, the combined power is 120 watts which results in a current draw of 1 amp.  Calculating voltage drop on 200' of AWG 14 copper wire suggests a drop of 1 volt.  According to the internet, you want to stay under 3% voltage drop, which is 3.6 volts.

The old halogen work lights take about ten times the power and would result in a pretty significant voltage drop.  With LED lights you could probably even go to 16 gauge (light duty) power cord.
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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #25 on: March 10, 2017, 12:20:51 pm »
If you are not worried about permanent lighting the quickest and probably cheapest setup I can think of is a deep cycle 12 volt battery and some offroad led light bars from amazon.

I actually adapted some of those lights to work using a computer power supply plugged into 110 outlet. I have them mounted on my house and am using them for flood lights. I flip on the switch and it becomes daylight.

The deep cycle battery lasts a pretty long time and when it does start to get low just take it home and throw it on charge overnight.
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Offline 47sawdust

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #26 on: March 10, 2017, 05:15:13 pm »
the battery on your mill will power all the LED lights you need for around the mill.The 4 post design has all kinds of possibilities for lights.My mill shed has no power.I have 2 lights mounted on the mill and will be adding a 2'and a4' led strip light.The shed itself has a solar panel powering 4 more lights.
 If you are committed to running 110 volt up to the mill,200 feet isn't that far.I would look on CL for someone selling some entrance cable for cheap.You could have power for lights,hydraulic power pack and more.
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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #27 on: March 12, 2017, 04:33:19 pm »
My mill doesn't have a battery. I'm thinking the extension cord is my best bet. But could I seriously run 2 or 3 3500-5000 lumen led lights from one or two 12 volt truck batteries? About how long would the lights before needing a recharge? And how long would the batteries last before not holding a good charge? I'm just really curious at this point
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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #28 on: March 12, 2017, 05:20:29 pm »
The led's use almost no power. you could get a long time on one charge. Would only need 1 battery.

For an example I have a UTV that I added a plow to that uses the winch to raise and lower the plow. The factory battery would only lift the plow about 8 times before it got to low to run the fuel injection. I had a deep cycle battery from my popup camper that I installed under the seat and wired the winch direct to it. No connection to the UTV at all. complete standalone plow system. I can run that setup about a month before I really need to start thinking about charging the battery. My driveway is a 1/4 mile long and I raise an lower the plow quite a bit while cleaning out.

The LED on the battery should last 3 months before you really need to worry about charging it. I use a 20" bar for my house flood light. Best floodlight I have ever had.

If I were you I would get 2 or 4 6" flood pattern put them on a pole connected to the battery and put some wheels under it for easy moving. I bet you be very happy with that setup.

If you do I want to see pics :)
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Offline francismilker

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #29 on: March 14, 2017, 10:46:48 am »
Deere,
The voltage drop calculator I looked at says you'll need an 8 gauge cord to supply 10 amps at 200'. Idk what your work lights will demand but you might look at the box they come in for max wattage before running power.
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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #30 on: March 14, 2017, 11:34:25 am »
The 20" Nilight LEd combo light bar I purchased off amazon has a 7.8 amp draw. I am not an electronics guy so I cannot tell you how that will equate to time of use off a battery. All I can tell you is my computer power supply I am using to power it could handle 2 lights without a problem.
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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #31 on: March 14, 2017, 12:02:30 pm »
If you search for "led work light" you'll find a load of options with many in the 4000 to 7000 lumen range.  The typical power consumption on those is in the ballpark of 1 watt for every 100 lumens of illumination.  If you want two lights at 5,000 lumens each you'll need about 100 watts of power.  An extension cord running 110v could supply that without breaking a sweat.  Or, if you went the DC route, a 12v battery would be drawing 8.3 amps.  Running the lights on the battery for two hours would use up 16.6 amp-hours of charge.  I believe a decent deep cycle battery in the 100 amp-hour range can be had at a reasonable price.  You wouldn't want to drain the battery too far, as deeper discharge cycles shorten the life of the battery.  If you do opt for DC, you can probably find 12v led units that serve your needs but draw much less power.
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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #33 on: March 15, 2017, 09:37:57 am »
My goal to handle heavy stuff off the mill is to build a big arch wide and tall enough to straddle my mill and trailers.  Like rolling gantry.    My Craftsman garden tractor can moved almost anything that I can off the ground with an arch.  And if the craftsman won't move, then I can use the truck.

Offline EZland

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #34 on: March 16, 2017, 12:26:12 am »
As for lights i was using one those HF $90 generators for two years for my lighting.  I ran some temp construction strings overhead on one side and one two head halogen for task light.  I would also wear a headlamp too and use it in dark spots or when the generator ran out of gas.

It allowed me to saw in the hot days in GA.
EZ Boardwalk Jr. 30", Husky 455, Kioti 5010 w, FEL , And I just moved to Ohio.and still looking for logs.

God is great!  I will never be as good as the "Carpenter's Son"

Online Deese

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #35 on: March 16, 2017, 01:20:00 pm »
I just ordered a 5000 lumen led headlamp from Amazon. Should be here tomorrow. I found 2 of my Coleman gasoline lanterns in storage and got them going last night. Those jokers put off some decent lighting when elevated. I'm going to do a trial run tomorrow after work. Many logs waiting to face the blade this weekend. I'm excited.

Sawed 4 years with EZ Boardwalk Jr 13hp. I now have a 2004 LT40HDD51. Cooks Cat Claw Sharpener, Cooks Single Tooth Setter, a bunch of chainsaws, and an old chocolate lab.

Offline plantman

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #36 on: March 17, 2017, 03:04:15 pm »
Hey Deese, how do you like that EZ Boardwalk ? I was thinking about getting one of those.

Offline TKehl

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #37 on: March 17, 2017, 03:37:23 pm »
I just ordered a 5000 lumen led headlamp from Amazon.

Not to stray off topic, but I'm sold on the Energizer Hardcase Pro headlamps (have not tried their lower grade one).  I've tried a bunch of headlamps, but have relied on the Hardcase for doing chores on the farm the last two years.  It's the only one I've found that holds up, is quite bright, and has a long battery life.

Appreciate any reviews on the lamp you get.
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.

Online Deese

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Re: Changing my sawmill setup
« Reply #38 on: March 17, 2017, 04:04:11 pm »
Hey Deese, how do you like that EZ Boardwalk ? I was thinking about getting one of those.

It's a good choice if you are looking for a well built, medium sized manual mill.
Sawed 4 years with EZ Boardwalk Jr 13hp. I now have a 2004 LT40HDD51. Cooks Cat Claw Sharpener, Cooks Single Tooth Setter, a bunch of chainsaws, and an old chocolate lab.