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Author Topic: Cutting live edge  (Read 635 times)

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Offline ChadH

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Cutting live edge
« on: March 17, 2017, 11:07:47 am »
Hey guys, been awhile since I have been back on here.

Question for the Sawyers

When cutting live edge slabs what technique do you use? Do you clamp the log? (I have seen some people who don't clamp the log) what thickness do you cut when random cutting?

I have cut a fair bit of live edge slabs for customers but that was all at their spec.

I've got a bunch of oak and arbutus I want to get cut up asap to dry. So it will be all random cutting. Also wondering your tips and tricks to cutting live edge slabs.

Thanks guys always appreciate the help on this site!
Chad H
Westcoast Custom Timber

Wood-Mizer LT35 Hydraulic sawmill
Stihl 090 X2 in running order
Stihl 460 36" bar
Husqvarna 345 18" bar
Granberg Alaskan sawmill

Offline drobertson

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Re: Cutting live edge
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2017, 11:42:10 am »
Never random,  I have always had a target size,  and I do clamp,  there have been times where clamping is a challenge, with lifting up and sliding over the back stops, in these cases I slow down the feed,
only have a few chain saws I'm not suppose to use, but will at times, one dog Dolly, pretty good dog, just not sure what for yet,  working on getting the gardening back in order, and kinda thinking on maybe a small bbq bizz,  thinking about it,

Offline Andries

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Re: Cutting live edge
« Reply #2 on: March 17, 2017, 11:42:42 am »
A couple of tips:
Oak is prone to splitting especially if it dries unevenly or too fast. Sealing the ends of the wood helps a lot.
If the slabs are very thick, it'll keep on moving because the inside is wet (30% MC) and the outside is at equilibrium (10% MC). When air drying, don't let it get rain wet - more checking will happen.
The best live edge peices are milled about 3 inches thickness, or less.
I'll clamp the log on the initial cut, but once it's rolled over onto the opening face, weight alone will keep it in place during milling.
If the size of the log allows, don't take slabs off as you mill, the weight of the slab 'stack' will keep it in position on the mill. Off-bear the slabs when the log is completely milled.
The centre slab, with the pith in it, will check and split and twist. It's called pith with good reasons.  :D
Chad, you used the word 'random' cutting. Not sure what that means, but if it was me, a best guess as to final use of the slabs would be good.
Most sawyers will have a cut list in mind before the band enters the wood.
Hope this helps, good to hear from you again.
Almost any kid will run a chore for you - if asked an hour before bedtime . . . .

Offline WV Sawmiller

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Re: Cutting live edge
« Reply #3 on: March 17, 2017, 02:17:39 pm »
Chad,

   I position the log, saw off the first/scrap outer slab and usually discard it, then cut a slab or two, rotate 180 degrees, clamp near the bottom and finish sawing to the bed. I will some times saw a 1" flitch on the second turn to make my mark or the pith center work out properly. I may or may not edge the flitch depending upon the type of wood and intended use. I normally cut 2" slabs but if I want a fireplace mantel or two I measure to cut 3" or 4" and space accordingly to center the pith and hit my mark to minimize wasted wood.
Howard Green
WM LT35HDG25(2015) , 2009 4wd Dodge PU, Kawasaki 650 ATV, Sthil 440 & 441, homemade logging arch (w/custom built rear log dolly), JD 750 w/4' wide Bushhog brand FEL

Dad always said "You can shear a sheep a bunch of times but you can only skin him once"

Offline ChadH

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Re: Cutting live edge
« Reply #4 on: March 17, 2017, 02:47:47 pm »
Thanks guys, I guess I should have specified, I mean random as in I'm cutting for no particular person or order. Random cutting would mean slabbing out a log to standard thicknesses that sell.

I have end sealer for the logs, and will be painting it on this weekend. Once cut everything will be stacked under cover to air dry.



Chad H
Westcoast Custom Timber

Wood-Mizer LT35 Hydraulic sawmill
Stihl 090 X2 in running order
Stihl 460 36" bar
Husqvarna 345 18" bar
Granberg Alaskan sawmill

Offline kelLOGg

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Re: Cutting live edge
« Reply #5 on: March 18, 2017, 07:21:02 am »
I do pretty much as the others AND I will start my first cut so that, when I get to the pith, it is contained within the slab.
Bob
Cook's MP-32, 16HP, 20' (modified w/ power feed, up/down, loader/turner)
DH kiln, CatClaw, tandem trailer, log arches, trailer, tractor, hammer

Offline Ga Mtn Man

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Re: Cutting live edge
« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2017, 08:21:05 am »
If it's a large log (between 24" and 28" on my mill) that requires over-hanging the side stops to gain the needed throat width, I try to make sure the stops and clamp are low enough so I can saw down to less than 24" diameter before having to turn the log. 
"If the women don't find you handsome they should at least find you handy." - Red Green


2012 LT40HDG29 with "Superized" hydraulics,  2 LogRite cant hooks, home-built log arch.