Woodmizer or other portable saw mills

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by painterswife, Dec 27, 2004.

  1. painterswife

    painterswife Sock puppet reinstated Supporter

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    We are looking into buying a Woodmizer or other portable saw mill to do alot of our beams, siding etc. for our new property.

    I would like to hear from anyone who has experience using them. I would like to know about brands, costs ease of use and any other tidbits that
    you can offer that would help us.

    Jill
     
  2. Jolly

    Jolly Well-Known Member

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    Unless you are going to go into the custom cutting business after you build your house, you may not want to buy your own mill. Around here, the guys get about $160/1000 to saw, although some will work on halves. If you want them to fell, it costs more.

    If you are thinking of going into the biz, you have to determine a few things...what is the largest stuff you'd like to cut?...what is the longest?...do you need hydraulics on the saw?...will the mill be transported to the saw site, or will the logs be transported to the mill?...is there a niche market to be mined?...is sawing to be a main source of income?(you don't work much in the winter)...

    Just a few thoughts, and worth no more than what you paid for them....
     

  3. painterswife

    painterswife Sock puppet reinstated Supporter

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    This will be for our own use on our own property.
     
  4. Walt K. in SW PA

    Walt K. in SW PA Well-Known Member

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    We were able to find a local who brought his Woodmizer to our home and sawed exactly how many beams I wanted. He had advertised in the local newspaper. Perhaps you could place a Wanted ad for someone with a portable sawmill to do the same for you.
     
  5. Kris in MI

    Kris in MI Well-Known Member Supporter

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    We just had a guy with a portable sawmill out to our place to saw up some logs we got last year for 'free' (dh felled them for the mother of a friend, and hauled them home). The guy we hired to cut them up charged (I think, dh did the dealing, I just wrote the check!) $50 per hour, plus so many cents a mile round trip, plus the cost of however many sawblades he used up on our job. Overall it was quite a good deal for us as we got over 900 board feet of oak and cherry and it figured to only 30 cents a bf.

    Dh was really hoping to talk me into buying a portable sawmill of his own, but, well, he'd have to quit his day job and become a professional sawyer to make it worthwhile.
     
  6. desdawg

    desdawg Well-Known Member

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    I think they are pretty pricey for a one job purchase.
     
  7. Rod Torgeson

    Rod Torgeson Well-Known Member

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    painterswife......I believe you can get in touch with Woodmizer and they in turn can supply you with the name of a sawyer near you. Here would be somebody you can talk with about your situation. Several years ago I had 13,000 board feet milled out at $130 a thousand plus a haul in charge, don't remember what that was. Like others have said, unless you are going to do this full time, having it done is a better way to go. Anyway it was a lot of lumber for the price. Hope this helps. Rod in Appleton, WA
     
  8. levi1739

    levi1739 Well-Known Member

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  9. Jolly

    Jolly Well-Known Member

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    Ok, after reading a bit more...

    If the mill is just for personal use, you will be investing in an expensive hobby.

    There are small mills out on the market that may cost a bit less, but I don't think you can find much with any capacity that will run less than 3K. Figuring at 160/1000, that's 18,750 bd ft of sawed stock.

    The typical Woodmizer you see down here, can saw 20 ft logs, has the hydraulic package for easier log handling, and runs about 20K. On that saw, I figure to make your nut, you are going to be 18-24 months down the line, sawing full time for other folks.

    Figuring out a niche market, helps make for happier, and wealthier sawyers. I have a friend who has just such a niche...there is a large hardwood mill ten miles down the road from his house. Because big circular saw blades are so expensive, when they wand a log, unless the metal is easily found, the mill P.O.s the log. My friend hauls them away for free. He then spends his time finding the metal, and cutting it out of the log with his chainsaw, before quarter-sawing it. He then uses a solar kiln to add value. His market is some of the local cabinet shops, a few contractors, and local wood-workers.