High Quality Chainsaw Bars Husqvarna Toys Hockfire Saws

ammoaddict

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Beautiful up there, I'm sure! Never went past Ashville (Biltmore Estate), but one day I want to hit the Blue Ridge Parkway...one day...when I have the time, lol. (Been saying that for years)

I'm 80 miles east of Asheville. Biltmore house is unbelievable. Parkway is very scenic.


Gotcha. How good does the 395 oil? Is there an oiler upgrade available if it doesn't oil enough?
 
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sledneck22

But, is the chain sharp?
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I have done a crapload of milling over the past few years
My observations are

A band saw will be easier in every way to make large amounts of accurate lumber
However for a chainsaw like you said it’s dual purpose..
the heavier the saw the harder it is on your body milling. Lifting up onto your cut sucks’ I utilize the smallest saw for the cut.
If your making boards that are only 12” wide, get yourself a mini mill that doesn’t have the addition bar support. Using this with a 70cc saw is much much easier on your body and faster in every way with a 20” bar
For wood that is thicker your will need the full mill and a 36” bar to utilize the full mill. If this is the case minimum 95cc but preferred 120cc.
The 3120 will dump oil like no one’s business for killing keeping your chain sharper longer as it won’t get as hot.
If I were say making a house on a piece of property I would def invest in a band saw and a small bobcat or skid to lift logs onto.

for the hobbyists such as myself an atv and some rigging gear along with an alaaskan mill sized for the log including power head is a fun way to make lumber.

this is a great piece of advice. I fall into the hobbiest category. Atv with winch and some simple machines makes due diligence for me. Plus I like being able to go out after supper and knock out a log and just setting everything back on the shelf real quick. Plus I don’t have room to store a band saw right now and keep it out of the weather. 3A604DBA-BDF0-4AD2-8577-4D0D76697ACC.jpeg604A947A-F8F4-4E66-B85D-08E2CD6404B4.jpeg0452DD75-D535-4F48-A17A-41527B0B3CD7.jpegE69FCA4D-4CC3-454A-B372-F11BC6314BED.jpeg
 
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JB-PlantHeirloom

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If you set up a chainsaw properly and use the correct ripping chain, on the correct mill, you can produce lumber that looks planed without waves or roughness. I would suggest buying or making a ProCut type carriage mill. I do not bend down, I walk up right, and 8 turns on the crank = 2", so making live slabs is very easy.

> Question: what do y'all recommend to extend the life of a chainsaw used for milling?

Do a vacuum and compression test every so often, I am pretty sure leaking crank seals is what killed my Husky 385, which was a wonderful saw for the mill. Though my 1st saw for it was a 365, followed by a 372. Personally, I think a MS-066 running a 32" bar is the ideal setup for a chainsaw mill. Soon I (Creator willing) will be using my MS-660 FarmerTec clone for a procut carriage type mill made from scrap metal :-D , mounted on a dual axle trailer, with a winch and ramps to load the logs onto the carriage.

http://www.procutportablesawmills.com/

My trailer carries all the gear I need to cut down trees, 3 chainsaws, pole saws, 250+ feet of rope, 400+ feet of 1/4" cable, 35 feet of chain, pulley blocks, come-a-longs, Peavys, steel bars for rolling logs, axes, wedges, tools, etc. PLUS, it can carry firewood away OR it can carry lumber away.

What is paramount is making sure your chain is parallel with the kerf, if so, with good ripping chain you will breeze through 24" pine and produce boards that looked planed. Plus, I can turn logs if I want to make dimensional lumber.

I had a Husq 3120 with 36" bar and ending up selling it, just nothing big enough to cut on a regular basis to keep it, especially for dropping and bucking trees. Plus, I hate not having a side chain tensioner. I used a customer's MS-880 on his carriage type sawmill, nice saw, but in the smaller stuff it is no faster then the 385 or MS-660, plus, no side tensioner. So, imho, unless you are cutting hardwood logs over 24" diameter on a regular basis, you can do without buying a MS-880 for $2000+.

If you are cutting logs under 32" and mostly pine, I would get a saw with a side tensioner, so, chain swaps are quick and easy, that runs ripping chain .050 x 3/8" and a 32" bar (popular size) which is good for 27" logs on most mills. I run Stihl 40:1 with non ethanol gas (87 octane), with octane boost, with Stabilt, and my saws and equipment have been running fine on that.

Have fun no matter what you pick for the job because what we do, many people could only wish for in their wildest dreams.
 

Ethobling

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If you set up a chainsaw properly and use the correct ripping chain, on the correct mill, you can produce lumber that looks planed without waves or roughness. I would suggest buying or making a ProCut type carriage mill. I do not bend down, I walk up right, and 8 turns on the crank = 2", so making live slabs is very easy.

> Question: what do y'all recommend to extend the life of a chainsaw used for milling?

Do a vacuum and compression test every so often, I am pretty sure leaking crank seals is what killed my Husky 385, which was a wonderful saw for the mill. Though my 1st saw for it was a 365, followed by a 372. Personally, I think a MS-066 running a 32" bar is the ideal setup for a chainsaw mill. Soon I (Creator willing) will be using my MS-660 FarmerTec clone for a procut carriage type mill made from scrap metal :-D , mounted on a dual axle trailer, with a winch and ramps to load the logs onto the carriage.

http://www.procutportablesawmills.com/

My trailer carries all the gear I need to cut down trees, 3 chainsaws, pole saws, 250+ feet of rope, 400+ feet of 1/4" cable, 35 feet of chain, pulley blocks, come-a-longs, Peavys, steel bars for rolling logs, axes, wedges, tools, etc. PLUS, it can carry firewood away OR it can carry lumber away.

What is paramount is making sure your chain is parallel with the kerf, if so, with good ripping chain you will breeze through 24" pine and produce boards that looked planed. Plus, I can turn logs if I want to make dimensional lumber.

I had a Husq 3120 with 36" bar and ending up selling it, just nothing big enough to cut on a regular basis to keep it, especially for dropping and bucking trees. Plus, I hate not having a side chain tensioner. I used a customer's MS-880 on his carriage type sawmill, nice saw, but in the smaller stuff it is no faster then the 385 or MS-660, plus, no side tensioner. So, imho, unless you are cutting hardwood logs over 24" diameter on a regular basis, you can do without buying a MS-880 for $2000+.

If you are cutting logs under 32" and mostly pine, I would get a saw with a side tensioner, so, chain swaps are quick and easy, that runs ripping chain .050 x 3/8" and a 32" bar (popular size) which is good for 27" logs on most mills. I run Stihl 40:1 with non ethanol gas (87 octane), with octane boost, with Stabilt, and my saws and equipment have been running fine on that.

Have fun no matter what you pick for the job because what we do, many people could only wish for in their wildest dreams.

Excellent write-up. Man, now I'm 2nd guessing my 880 purchase. Maybe I should just get the 385...aaahhh. :confused:
 

sledneck22

But, is the chain sharp?
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Is it my eyes, or can I see waves in your cants?
No, There's a little wave to it. I don't have rails or a ladder long enough at this time to get a perfect starting edge over 9 1/2' long. Those will be vertical risers for my project and only 9' front, 8' back will be visible. The rest will be treated and buried so I wasn't concerned with how the bottom section turned out. I've since found a 14' extension ladder which helps with the long pieces.
 

Moparmyway

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That is why I have tractors, a forklift and a track loader. Why would I want to make a job harder than it needs to be?
There's lots of fellas that don't have the provisions, the space, or the ability to have all of the equipment that you have.
There's something to be said about perspective, and being able to "see" someone else's situation without having the lone self centered point of view, no ?
 

Ethobling

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One thing about a chainsaw mill vs band saw mill: I can mill live edges up to 28" or so with my current setup. To buy a bandsaw mill to be able to do that would be like $7000+.

If I was production milling, maybe. But I'm not milling day in and out.

~$400 vs $7000. You do the math. ;)
 

kneedeepinsaws

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Beautiful up there, I'm sure! Never went past Ashville (Biltmore Estate), but one day I want to hit the Blue Ridge Parkway...one day...when I have the time, lol. (Been saying that for years)



Gotcha. How good does the 395 oil? Is there an oiler upgrade available if it doesn't oil enough?
I didn’t have trouble with 395 oiling but the 3120 oils better. Both are good choices, 395 is a more appropriate felling saw than the 3120 due to weight.

keep your chain sharp, that is the single best advice I can give to promoting a long lasting milling saw. It should be cutting fairly quickly with the grain. I do a 0-5 degree angle.
 

Ethobling

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I didn’t have trouble with 395 oiling but the 3120 oils better. Both are good choices, 395 is a more appropriate felling saw than the 3120 due to weight.

keep your chain sharp, that is the single best advice I can give to promoting a long lasting milling saw. It should be cutting fairly quickly with the grain. I do a 0-5 degree angle.

Gotcha. Yeah, I am currently working a couple chains down from the factory 25° to 10°. Should I really be going down to 0-5°? What advantage does a shallower angle have over, say, a 25°? I've kinda just been going to 10° because people say so, but I don't think I've completely understood why.
 

srcarr52

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Gotcha. Yeah, I am currently working a couple chains down from the factory 25° to 10°. Should I really be going down to 0-5°? What advantage does a shallower angle have over, say, a 25°? I've kinda just been going to 10° because people say so, but I don't think I've completely understood why.

The more blunt the top angle the better finish cut is but you sacrifice some speed. I've had the best luck with semi-chisel chain at 10deg top plate and 50-55deg side plate (hook angle). The extra hook angle helps it self feed without having to take the rakers down to where it gets really grabby.

I did a lot of milling with a ported 395XP. I tried a 3/8 lopro setup on a 36" bar but with large cuts in read oak I was breaking the carlton chain I had. Maybe Stihl picco chain would have held up better.

I made my own mill and it was drilled through the bar and the center of the tip allowing for ~32" of cut from a 36" bar. At this length I had to add an aux oiler, just a drip feed on the tip to better oil cut cutting portion of the bar as a lot of oil is slung off the tip.

I'd say milling one decent log a day is a good goal, it's time consuming, tiring and dirty to chainsaw mill. I now have a Woodmiser LT30 that can cut up a log in 30 mins that would have taken 5-6 hours with the chainsaw mill.
 

Guido Salvage

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There's lots of fellas that don't have the provisions, the space, or the ability to have all of the equipment that you have.
There's something to be said about perspective, and being able to "see" someone else's situation without having the lone self centered point of view, no ?

Sorry that you feel that earning a living and buying equipment to support my hobby is “self centered”. Why should I needlessly toil when there is a better option? Everything I own I bought myself with funds that I earned (with the exception of a 19 year old car my mother gave me when she stopped driving). I can’t control your circumstances but I can certainly better mine.
 

Ethobling

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Sorry that you feel that earning a living and buying equipment to support my hobby is “self centered”. Why should I needlessly toil when there is a better option? Everything I own I bought myself with funds that I earned (with the exception of a 19 year old car my mother gave me when she stopped driving). I can’t control your circumstances but I can certainly better mine.
He wasn't saying your buying of equipment was self centered. He was saying that not recognizing that someone isn't at the stage where they can buy those things is self centered.

There was a point in your life where you didn't have all the equipment you had now. You had to work with what you had until you felt it was necessary to buy a certain piece of equipment.

That's where I am. I am "making do" with a CSM and no heavy machinery. If there comes a point where it is logical, financially possible, and reasonable to spend $1000s on new or used equipment, I will.

Now, please: can we end this debate?
 

srcarr52

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There's lots of fellas that don't have the provisions, the space, or the ability to have all of the equipment that you have.
There's something to be said about perspective, and being able to "see" someone else's situation without having the lone self centered point of view, no ?

I think the point to hammer home here is if you think you are going to make a fair amount of money milling wood with a chainsaw mill you are going to be disappointed. Sure if you have the time you can make a little side money or use the wood for your own projects but $/hr you're better off push mowing lawns.
 

Ethobling

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I think the point to hammer home here is if you think you are going to make a fair amount of money milling wood with a chainsaw mill you are going to be disappointed. Sure if you have the time you can make a little side money or use the wood for your own projects but $/hr you're better off push mowing lawns.
Yeah, sure. Makes sense. I am almost exclusively milling for myself. I do a lot of construction on the farm.
 
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Ketchup

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For chainsaw milling big and sharp is typically what you want. Smaller diameter logs can be milled with smaller saws.
Mods that help are big exhaust outlet aimed away from the operator, wide exhaust port, longer intake duration, slightly looser squish, air and cover mods that reduce heat and an auxiliary oiler.

Although many people will get aggressive about their feelings on the superiority of band saw milling, they are genuinely trying to save you a lot of hard work and frustration. If you plan to produce dimensional lumber in the volume necessary to build even a simple structure, a band saw will be a better choice despite its much higher up front cost. Even a small, low quality BSM will be 20 times more efficient than slabbing and stripping individual boards with a chainsaw.

I like chainsaw milling. I’ve done a lot of it. I get a lot off satisfaction from doing all the steps in a project from felling to oiling finished carpentry. All with hand tools.

I also love milling with a BSM. Stickering whole stacks of boards in a day is very satisfying and critical if you have structures that need built.

Many, many people start with a CSM and rapidly alter their vision and budget to include a BSM. Several of them are here and speaking from that position.

But the only thing lost at this stage is your time and energy. Enjoy your time behind the saw. I strongly recommend avoiding a Holzforma saw. They’re a gamble with very bad odds.
 

Guido Salvage

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I think the point to hammer home here is if you think you are going to make a fair amount of money milling wood with a chainsaw mill you are going to be disappointed. Sure if you have the time you can make a little side money or use the wood for your own projects but $/hr you're better off push mowing lawns.

If you think you are going to do it with a band mill (especially a manual one) you are also probably mistaken. As the old saying goes, the best way to make a $1,000,000 in the sawmill business is to start with $2,000,000.
 

Sagebrush33

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Hooskie 2101 in the 4 sail section. Needs a minor fix and @srcarr52 is the man for it.
 
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