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Author Topic: Setting a mill on a wood deck  (Read 1838 times)

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Offline firefighterontheside

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Setting a mill on a wood deck
« on: October 10, 2017, 10:00:36 pm »
I'm gonna be getting a new to me LT15 soon and I'm figuring out where it will live.  Probably gonna be on gravel with a metal carport over it.  I'm considering building a wood deck for it to sit on.  Picture a wood platform about 6 inches high and maybe 8'x20'.  Has anybody done something like that and how did it work?  I know concrete would be better, but this may be a temporary location.
Thanks,
Bill
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Offline paul case

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #1 on: October 10, 2017, 10:07:46 pm »
My first mill was set up on 8x8 cants. A little more than that is handy. Actually I like to have the deck of the mill about knee high as it isnt as far to bend over to clamp boards and logs. The room underneath is handy for clean up. That is all subject to loading logs on to a mill with a little height.

First mill?
PC
life is too short to be too serious. (some idiot)
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pc

Offline 4x4American

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #2 on: October 10, 2017, 10:08:19 pm »
I've seen people use 6x6 bunks
Boy, back in my day..

Offline WV Sawmiller

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #3 on: October 10, 2017, 10:19:56 pm »
   Mine is on a trailer and I saw mobile so I don't really have a dog in this fight but I have an opinion, a common shortfall I live with on a daily basis, and think you would be better served with the mill at a higher/more comfortable working height - something between knee and thigh high so you don't have to bend over as much (I hate bending over). I don't see enough advantage of a solid deck to justify it compared to just sturdy cants/bunks especially for a temporary location. I really think a wood base would be better than concrete because it has more flexibility.

   Good luck and enjoy the mill.
Howard Green
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Dad always said "You can shear a sheep a bunch of times but you can only skin him once"

Offline firefighterontheside

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #4 on: October 10, 2017, 10:21:11 pm »
My plan would include concrete piers dug down to about 30" to prevent movement from frost, but maybe some long 6x6's would make more sense for a temporary situation.
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Offline firefighterontheside

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #5 on: October 10, 2017, 10:24:20 pm »
You guys have made my decision.  Thanks for the useful ideas.
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Offline 4x4American

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #6 on: October 10, 2017, 10:26:54 pm »
If you were to do 6x6's for temporary, here's what I'd do: level the ground first nice and level, then lay down two 6x6 runners and make sure they're parallel to each other, then put 6x6's cross ways under each bunk for support.  If you can, bolt them together for more rigidity-ness.  Then saw lumber.  I would only use two runners as its easier to level two runners than three and the 6x6 crossmembers wouldnt have any problems spanning the small gap between runners.
Boy, back in my day..

Offline firefighterontheside

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #7 on: October 10, 2017, 10:40:29 pm »
That's what I was thinking 4x4...... to use cross members and bolt them together with some long lags.  Thanks.
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Offline 4x4American

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #8 on: October 10, 2017, 11:21:37 pm »
Gitter done!   smiley_thumbsup



Boy, back in my day..

Offline WDH

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #9 on: October 11, 2017, 07:43:06 am »
I did it.

 

 
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Offline fishfighter

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #10 on: October 11, 2017, 07:56:08 am »
When I first got my mill, I mounted the on 6x6 runners and they were blocked up by 6x6 cross members. Was ok, but the killer was that the mill bed was to low. Had me bending over all the time.

 

 

Once I built a trailer, lifting the bed about 30" off the ground, my back thank me. ;D

 

 

Another down side of doing the 6x6 ground contact was a lot of saw dust and bark would fill in between and under the mill tracks. You had to fight to clean that area.

My future plans are to build a complete new mill bed that will be a lot longer then what I have now and mount my mill above the ground on 6x6's with 6x6 post sticking into the ground. I saw only for myself. I will keep the trailer I have and I will be able to just swap the head over if I want to go mobile.

 

Offline btulloh

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #11 on: October 11, 2017, 09:16:43 am »
This has worked fine for me.
 

 

Cross ties are spiked to the ground with 1/2" rebar.  Sills are secured with Timberloks.

Offline firefighterontheside

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #12 on: October 11, 2017, 01:02:02 pm »
I hear what you're saying about cleaning out sawdust, so it would be better to do what btulloh has done and put the short cross memebers on the ground and the long bunks on top of those.  That would make it easier to clean out underneath.

I like your setups guys.
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Offline btulloh

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #13 on: October 11, 2017, 03:36:55 pm »
I try to blow the sawdust and bark off the track fairly often and I just blow the sawdust out from between the ties while I'm at it.

My mill (HM126) has adjustable feet under the track that are staggered from side to side and don't match up well if the cross ties were on the top layer.  Like most things, it all depends on your particulars.  My bed is located on very firm ground that drains like a sieve, so it's been really stable with the limited number of cross ties.  It's not as good as pouring a slab or footers, but it works for me.  Maybe sometime I'll upgrade the whole thing, but while I'm waiting on that I'll be sawing logs.
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Offline WDH

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #14 on: October 11, 2017, 04:31:21 pm »
You need to get the mill up just above knee height.  You can measure your own knee.
Woodmizer LT40HDD35, John Deere 2155, Kubota M5640SU, Nyle L53 Dehumidification Kiln, and a passion for all things with leafs, twigs, and bark.  hamsleyhardwood.com

Offline DanMc

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #15 on: October 11, 2017, 04:36:22 pm »
What a fantastic thread! :)  Keep the pics coming!!!!!!

I'm still tying up my trailer with the mill sitting on it.  It's a little awkward having to step up and down off the trailer while I load logs, but I'm getting stuff done and learning.  A more permanent installation will happen once I have enough wood milled to build something.  A setup like WDH has would be fantastic.  A little "head-shed" like btulloh has would be amazing. 




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Offline btulloh

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #16 on: October 11, 2017, 05:04:16 pm »
Getting up and down on that trailer would wear me out in a hurry.  But it illustrates a good point, I think.  Getting a mill set up and sawing logs is more important than trying to make the perfect solution right out of the gate.  Probably even more important when it's your first foray into sawmilling (like mine was for me).   Like a lot of things, I didn't know what I really needed for a good setup until I had done some sawing for a while.  Getting things organized for decent work flow took some trial and error (and help from people on the forum) before I started to really figure it out.  And it's still evolving. If I had cast everything in concrete initially I would be locked into some bad setups.  Of course there are some examples on here of people who put down pads and made real nice layouts to start, and probably came out ok.  I first set the mill up on some 8x8 solid cinder blocks.  Not good for the long run, but it allowed me saw some stuff out to make the next version.

My bed ended up about knee high by the time you add up two sets of 6x6's, the adjustable feet, the track, and the bunks and it's about right. So, like WDH said, knee high is a good thing to shoot for.

DanMc has got a good machine there for moving his logs and lumber around and he got his mill set up and making sawdust.  When he gets it off that trailer, he won't miss climbing up and down I bet. 

My very first setup:

 

 

Things evolve:
 

 

Offline firefighterontheside

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #17 on: October 11, 2017, 05:52:41 pm »
Here is my mill as it is now.  Andy had a nice setup with concrete and a big roof.
You may remember member gfadvm, I'm inheriting his saw as he's no longer able to use it.  He's been dealing with brain cancer for almost 2 years now.  I will be picking up the mill this weekend.  I'm excited to get it, but sure wish Andy could keep using it.
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Offline firefighterontheside

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #18 on: October 11, 2017, 06:57:09 pm »
Anybody know how to post pictures from an iPad?
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Offline 4x4American

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Re: Setting a mill on a wood deck
« Reply #19 on: October 11, 2017, 08:01:30 pm »
Anybody know how to post pictures from an iPad?



The way i do it from my phone is to go into the gallery and upload the pics to an album there then copy the code and paste it in a thread.  On my phone, every time I do this, after I paste the code into the thread, instead of the [ ] brackets it comes out as %5b and %5d on each end, so if that happens to you, thats what you have to do.  Maybe @Jeff can shed some light on this
Boy, back in my day..