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Author Topic: No used millls out there  (Read 736 times)

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Offline GusHigh

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No used millls out there
« on: May 15, 2017, 10:24:41 pm »
Hey.
What are people's thoughts on the availability/scarcity of used bandsaw mills? 
It looks like there isn't more than a half dozen used mills listed for sale online in Ontario.
Of the mills that are listed, the asking prices are insane - as much as a comparable new mill in some cases.

Is this this typical in other Provinces/States? 

If mills do in fact hold their value that well, would it be practical to buy a new entry level hobby mill to see how much time/use I have for it and if I find I want "'more" mill, would I be then able to trade up so to speak.

This is probably a question that's been asked a thousand times here I know.

My gut tells me I should just get a mill that does what I think I want which is 32" diameter 16' logs. I can buy a Canadian made mill that does that for about 6k plus tax. 

Is there anyone that would recommend against starting with that big a mill?

Also, at what point does log capacity on a manual mill become impractical.  In other words is a 16' x 32 or 34" log
too big to be handled manually ok a mill even it it is within the mills capacity.

Looking Forwrd to everyone's thoughts and feedback.



Offline nopoint

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Re: No used millls out there
« Reply #1 on: May 15, 2017, 10:39:01 pm »
It all depends how much you plan to saw and how much labor you want to put in. There will always be a bigger better mill.

Offline paul case

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Re: No used millls out there
« Reply #2 on: May 15, 2017, 11:36:08 pm »
I gave 6500 for my first mill. Sold it 500 hours later for 5000. I also cut out a house with it which was my intended purpose for it. The lumber for framing alone would have cost me the 6500 so i figured the mill paid for itself in the first 5 months I had it. However, from the time I got it home, there were people bringing me logs to saw for them. Then I found a place that would buy my lumber and pay me a nice profit and it has been providing a good living for my family ever since.

PC
life is too short to be too serious. (some idiot)
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sawing oak.hickory,ERC,walnut and almost anything else that shows up.
Don't get phylosophical with me. you will loose me for sure.
pc

Offline Ianab

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Re: No used millls out there
« Reply #3 on: May 15, 2017, 11:51:20 pm »
Quote
Also, at what point does log capacity on a manual mill become impractical.  In other words is a 16' x 32 or 34" log too big to be handled manually ok a mill even it it is within the mills capacity.

Issue is the weight of those big logs.
A Douglas Fir log that size is going to weigh in the order of 3400 lb. Go to Oak and it's more like 5700 lb. That's a lot of weight to hump around manually.  Now if you have a decent tractor or forklift to load the log, and maybe some sort of gantry and winch to help you flip the part sawed log over if can be done without too much exertion. Might be a bit slow, but you get it done.

If it's just you and your cant hook, it looks a LOT like hard work.
Weekend warrior, Peterson JP test pilot, Dolmar 7900 and Stihl MS310 saws and  the usual collection of power tools :)

Offline GusHigh

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Re: No used millls out there
« Reply #4 on: May 16, 2017, 07:35:05 am »
Quote
Also, at what point does log capacity on a manual mill become impractical.  In other words is a 16' x 32 or 34" log too big to be handled manually ok a mill even it it is within the mills capacity.

Issue is the weight of those big logs.
A Douglas Fir log that size is going to weigh in the order of 3400 lb. Go to Oak and it's more like 5700 lb. That's a lot of weight to hump around manually.  Now if you have a decent tractor or forklift to load the log, and maybe some sort of gantry and winch to help you flip the part sawed log over if can be done without too much exertion. Might be a bit slow, but you get it done.

If it's just you and your cant hook, it looks a LOT like hard work.
Ya, turning the big logs was exactly what I thinking would be the limiting factor. That said I've got a couple ideas floating around for making that easier like an overhead winch.  I have a tractor for loading.

By the sounds of things it seems that unless I wreck the mill somehow, I'll get the majority of my investment back no mater if I buy a small mill and then move up, or I buy a bigger mill but decide to down size because I end up never cutting logs over 24".

Offline WV Sawmiller

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Re: No used millls out there
« Reply #5 on: May 16, 2017, 08:35:56 am »
Gus,

   I am biased. I suggest getting a little bigger mill with hydraulics if it is in your budget. I promise you will use and enjoy a hydraulic mill much more than a manual one. I just want to be sure if you buy one for a test you give it a fair test. Good luck.
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Dad always said "You can shear a sheep a bunch of times but you can only skin him once"

Offline paul case

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Re: No used millls out there
« Reply #6 on: May 16, 2017, 08:38:52 am »
It would be hard for me to go back to a manual mill after having the hydraulic mill.

The manual mill I had was outfitted with a pop up winch to turn bigger logs with.
 

  

 

It worked real well but I could turn a lot of the logs we would saw much quicker with a cant hook. The winch was a big help on big logs.

PC
life is too short to be too serious. (some idiot)
2013 LT40SHE25 and Riehl edger,  WM 94 LT40 hd E15. Cut my sawing ''teeth'' on an EZ Boardwalk
sawing oak.hickory,ERC,walnut and almost anything else that shows up.
Don't get phylosophical with me. you will loose me for sure.
pc

Offline GusHigh

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Re: No used millls out there
« Reply #7 on: May 16, 2017, 12:08:33 pm »
It would be hard for me to go back to a manual mill after having the hydraulic mill.

The manual mill I had was outfitted with a pop up winch to turn bigger logs with.
 

 (Image hidden from quote, click to view.) 

 (Image hidden from quote, click to view.)

It worked real well but I could turn a lot of the logs we would saw much quicker with a cant hook. The winch was a big help on big logs.

PC
I like that set up for pulling logs onto the mill - it looks simple and efficient.

I like the idea of having a mill big enough to do 32-34" logs when needed but I imagine if I'm doing worst first then most logs will be from those 18-24" trees leaning precariously over the skidded trails etc.

Offline woodworker9

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Re: No used millls out there
« Reply #8 on: May 16, 2017, 05:17:44 pm »
I was originally going to start small and low dollar and buy a manual mill.  I found a fully hydraulic LT40 that was 12 years old (when I bought it 3 years ago) that had 190 hours on it.

I am SO GLAD I have hydraulics.  I would not be without them.  I am also quite fond of the debarker, setworks, and all the other goodies that came on my mill.

Spend once, cry once, and be happy for the rest of your life......if you are able.   Not a recommendation for going into debt, but just to listen to everyone who tells you that having a hydraulic mill is the "bee's knee's".
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Offline btulloh

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Re: No used millls out there
« Reply #9 on: May 16, 2017, 05:23:11 pm »
There are two kinds of people:  People with hydraulics on their mill, and people who wish they had hydraulics.  I'm one of the latter, but I'm glad to have what I have and it suited my budget and purpose.  BUT I SURE WOULD LIKE TO HAVE SOME HYDRAULICS!! :o
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Offline Brad_bb

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Re: No used millls out there
« Reply #10 on: May 16, 2017, 08:45:20 pm »
What mill you get all depends on your intended use.  You haven't made that clear.  Are you just producing wood for yourself?  Are you producing timbers, boards, or dimensional softwood lumber?  Are you trying to make a living to just doing it on the side for fun?

I have an LT15 Woodmizer.  I mill for myself only so far as I'm building.  I mill mostly timbers, but I will end up milling boards for flooring too.  Most manual mills don't have hydraulics, like a log turner or toe boards(to raise and lower one end of the log to center the piths).  I wish those were available for my mill, but I'd have to fabricate them myself if I want them.  I can get by without them, but they'd really be nice.  A turner would be nice to be able to quarter saw, which requires a lot of turning the log.  To center the piths, I have the lift one end with forklift and shim.  Much slower than toe boards.

Larger heavier logs to become impractical.  I mill all hardwood, and the bigger the diameter and length, the harder they are to turn.  Sometimes have to use the forklift, and it's not always ideal.  Hydraulic turner would be very nice.  A 17" dia 16" hickory was a bear to turn.  24"+ dia Ash only 10' long get difficult.

If you are milling for boards or dimensional, get a hydraulic mill like the LT40 hydraulic.  Get all the hydraulic features you can.  Also make sure you have power feed.

If you're like me, making timbers and doing odd pieces, curved pieces, etc, you can get away with a manual mill. I like the manual feed in some situations where i have to go slow.
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Offline petefrom bearswamp

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Re: No used millls out there
« Reply #11 on: May 17, 2017, 08:09:37 am »
I started out with an lt15 in 2000
second log was a 24" Beech 10 feet long.
Found I couldnt turn it once squared by hand used my tractor and pushed it off the carriage.
Sent that mill back to WM and bought a used lt40 hydraulic, since upgraded to an lt40shdd51.
never regretted the choice.
Nothing showing up on the sawmill exchange?
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Offline red

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Re: No used millls out there
« Reply #12 on: May 17, 2017, 08:15:16 am »
The key is to buy any sawmill.  Then you will see many sawmills for sale. You can never have to many sawmills.
We have a lot of good boys and girls in harms way
lets all support them and their familys.

Offline millwright

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Re: No used millls out there
« Reply #13 on: May 17, 2017, 08:45:01 am »
My firs mill was an lt30 bought used. When I upgraded t o a hyd mill i sold the old one for what I paid for it, and had people offering more after it was sold