Sawing Oddball Logs

One of the greatest joys of running a sawmill (in addition to exercise and fresh air), is opening up a log to see the beauty inside. Often, I’ll have to stop, brush the sawdust off the log and take a minute to admire the grain and color of an unusual log. Some, like the fork […]

Slabs & Sawdust – One Person’s Sawmill “Waste” is Another’s Opportunity

One of the most common issues for sawyers is what to do with all the waste.  While band sawmills produce less than half the sawdust of circular sawmills, it still adds up, as do the slabs.  To most sawyers, sawdust and slabs are a nuisance—but they can be an opportunity for a little extra income.

Using your Sawmill to Mill Short Logs

How is it that you spend twice as long milling short logs for half the lumber?  The fact is, sawmills are typically designed to take logs 8’4” and longer.  Anything shorter either gets cut for firewood or left out in the woods to rot.  These are often logs with “character”—crotches, burls, bends, and unusual grain.  […]

Log Sawing Patterns To Meet Lumber Customer Needs

Ask any four sawyers the best way to cut a log and you’ll likely get at least a dozen different opinions. Often the disagreement comes because they use different terms to describe exactly the same procedures.

Portable Sawmill Support Equipment

When people consider buying a portable sawmill, they often overlook the importance of support equipment. While the mill itself is a major investment, you may find it is likely to be less than half your total investment in a complete sawmill operation. The other equipment depends on the kind of cutting you will be doing, […]

Cutting Your First Log on Your New Mobile Sawmill

So, you’ve purchased a brand-new portable band sawmill. Now what? Here are ten helpful tips and a beginner’s project to successfully mill your first log and gain valuable learning experience along the way. Check over your mill set-up Setting up your new mill is a relatively straightforward process as portable sawmill manufacturers provide detailed instructions, […]

Band Sawmill Blade Performance Factors

The blade is at the heart of the portable band sawmill. Yet, to many, blade maintenance is almost as much art as it is science. There are nearly as many tricks and techniques for sharpening bandsaw blades as there are recipes for the perfect barbecue sauce. To make matters even more complex, there are many […]

Tools of the Sawmilling Trade

When you go out on a cutting job with your portable sawmill, what do you take with you? If you’re working close to home and can make a quick run for gas or a 9/16” socket wrench, forgetting a vital piece of equipment is no big deal. But when you drive 40 miles to a […]

Milling Different Tree Species

In the Missouri Ozarks, there is a plethora of tree species to keep things interesting at the sawmill. Technically the forest is classified as oak-hickory, but the nine species of oak and four species of hickory don’t begin to describe the diversity. Sycamore, walnut, cherry, sassafras, persimmon, sweet gum, pecan, elm, mulberry, honey locust, Osage […]