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Portable Sawmills For Sale

In this article we look at the advantages of chainsaw sawmills, over other types of Sawmills.

Sawmill Use

There are many factors to consider, when searching for portable sawmills for sale, such as, what do you want to use the sawmill for, how much lumber do you want to cut, is the mill going to be for commercial use, or will it be a hobby, or both, where are you going to get the logs you will be milling, how are you going to handle the logs you will be milling, do you own or have access to equipment that can move the logs around, they are very heavy!

The first thing to consider is just what did you want to do, did you want to cut wood for a small project, like maybe building a shed, or a small log cabin, or sawing some good hardwood for furniture or hobby type projects, maybe a large Oak tree or a large Cherry tree came down in your yard, and you want to try to cut it up and get some nice wood out of it. Good quality hardwoods like, Oak, Maple, Cherry, Walnut, etc. can be very expensive, and even softwoods like White Pine can be very expensive, just one good size tree can contain several thousand dollars worth of wood, especially Hardwood trees.

What Are Your Portable Sawmill Resources

How much money did you want to spend on a mill, what is your budget? There are many types of mills out there, and there is a wide range of prices too.

Do you have any equipment to handle the logs, and how will you be getting the logs you want to saw? Do you already have a supply of trees you can cut and mill or will you have to buy them?

Did you want to sell lumber for profit, or was it going to be for your personal use, if you wanted to sell lumber for profit you will need a good size mill, and some equipment to handle the logs, which can be very expensive. A small commercial operation could easily cost more than $20,000.00 just to get started and that’s a small one.

Did you want to just cut wood for your own personal use, if the answer is yes then you may want to consider a chainsaw mill. A good chainsaw mill operation can be set up for less than $2000.00 including the chainsaw, and if you already own a medium to large chainsaw you could be cutting wood for a few hundred dollars.

Bandsaw Sawmills

Years ago wood planks were sawn from logs using very large circular saws, some with blades up to six feet in diameter or more, many of these type of operations still exist today, but in the past 30 years or so, bandsaw sawmills have become more and more popular. Bandsaw sawmills are considered more efficient than the old circular saw sawmills, the blade on a bandsaw sawmill is much thinner than the blade of a circular saw sawmill, which produces less waste than the circular sawmills, and are considered much more safe to use. bandsaw sawmills will yield more lumber per log than the circular sawmills, and if you are in the business of selling wood that you mill, you would want to be as efficient as possible.

While bandsaw sawmills have many advantages over the old circular sawmills, and are probably the best choice for a small commercial operations today, there are some drawbacks to bandsaw sawmills. First most bandsaw sawmills require a yard or area to operate in, even though they are considered portable, you must bring the logs to the saw. Most of the bandsaw mills can be moved around fairly easily with a trailer setup, you can just tow them with a vehicle, but they tend to be rather large pieces of equipment that need a good size work area.

 

 

The next problem is that most bandsaw mills do not have a lot of capacity for large diameter logs, you need a very large mill to handle large diameter logs, and these very large mills, have very large price tags, $30,000.00 – $50,000.00 easy for a good size mill, that will handle large logs. You will most likely need a piece of heavy equipment to handle those large logs as with a mill that big you must bring the log to the mill, so add another $10,000.00 – $20,000.00 for a used piece of heavy equipment.

Another problem that I have run into with smaller bandsaw sawmills is blade deflection, if you are sawing knotty wood, or wood with imperfections, or twisted grain, the blade sometimes can be deflected by the imperfections in the log, resulting in problems with the board you cut, it can be cut unevenly, thicker in some areas than others. The blade can actually ride up over the knots or imperfections, or be driven down, so your cut is uneven. I have not seen this problem in larger sawmills, with heavier blades, but larger sawmills carry larger price tags. I have a small bandsaw sawmill and, blade deflection has been a problem for me, I have never had this problem with a chainsaw sawmill, the bar of the saw keeps the cut perfectly even.

Chainsaw Sawmills

If you are new to sawmills, you may want to consider trying a chainsaw sawmill, there are many advantages to a chainsaw sawmill for the beginner or small operator. First of all the cost to get started is minimal compared to most bandsaw sawmills, you can be up and running for less than $2000.00, including the chainsaw. Next you do not need a large work area, or a yard to work out of, you can simply take the chainsaw mill right to the tree you want to cut into lumber, you do not have to take the tree to the sawmill. Also, you can cut much larger logs with a chainsaw sawmill, these chainsaw sawmills come in many sizes and are basically limited only by the size of the blade you use on your saw. My Alaskan sawmill can handle a saw blade up to 36″ in length, and I could cut boards up to 28″ or so wide and will easily handle a 32″ diameter log or larger, I routinely cut boards that are 18″ or wider with my sawmill. I currently am using a Stihl 066, and a Stihl ms880 chainsaws, with a 36″ saw blade, Granberg makes an Alaskan sawmill that can handle up to a 48″ saw blade, and can mill 50″ diameter logs, or larger.

Chainsaw Sawmills, A Good Start

While a good bandsaw sawmill will in most cases cut lumber a little faster than a chainsaw sawmill, Chainsaw sawmills are a good start for anyone considering cutting their own lumber, you can be up and running for a minimal cost compared to most other types of mills, and you can get a real feel for what it is like to cut your own lumber. Sawing lumber is hard work no matter what type of sawmill you are using, wood is heavy. You can always upgrade to a larger bandsaw sawmill if you decide you want to keep sawing lumber, and the chainsaw sawmill can still be used in conjunction with the bandsaw sawmill by cutting down larger logs to a size the bandsaw can handle.

If you have any question or comments please feel free to leave them below

Best Regards

Bob

 

 

 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

20 Comments

  1. Possible

    Very detailed information about sawmill. It have really given me a lot of ideas on how I should buy a good sawmill. Thanks a lot Bob.

    • admin

      Thanks for reading my post, and leaving a comment, if you want to buy a sawmill it is something you need to think about or you can end up wasting a lot of money.
      Thanks
      Bob

  2. Korbyn Hemp Guru

    My family has owned our own industrial sawmill for generations. We recently used it to construct a man cave! Your info has definitely helped, as we needed some more portable options. Thanks for the content!

    • admin

      Korbyn, thanks for reading my post and leaving a comment, since you already have experience with sawing lumber, I am sure you can understand why I am recommending someone with little or no experience to try a chainsaw sawmill first before they spend a lot of money on a big unit.
      Thanks
      Bob

  3. terry Lemoine

    Bob, you’ve done a very nice job of explaining portable sawmills…..I didn’t know there was an attachment for a chainsaw that turns into a sawmill saw….that’s pretty interesting. Keep the great content coming. Thanks

    • admin

      Terry, thanks for reading my post, and thanks for leaving the comment
      Thanks
      Bob

  4. David Carr

    I stumbled onto this blog and I’m hooked. I’m an avid DIYer who loves tools and learning new things. I didn’t even know that you could have a portable sawmill! I’m going to explore the rest of the site because there is tons of useful stuff on here. Keep up the good work!

    • admin

      David, thank you for reading my post, and thank you for leaving such a positive comment, I really appreciate it.
      Thanks
      Bob

  5. robyn white

    Your post was very informative as I knew very little about the subject before reading your post. It was well organized.

    • admin

      Robyn, thank you for reading my post, and thank you for leaving a comment
      Thank you
      Bob

  6. Koby Mcqueen

    I saw this on a show on the NatGeo channel. there was a trapper that lived in alaska that built his entire using one of these.

    • admin

      Koby, thank you for reading my post, and leaving a comment.These sawmills are very popular in Alaska, that is why they are called Alaskan sawmills. They are great for remote areas that can not be accessed by motor vehicles.
      Thanks
      Bob

  7. JasmereE

    Wow you really managed to cover everything. I had no idea that you could get started with a chainsaw sawmill for less than 2000 dollars that’s pretty good. How easy is it to replace the blade though?

    • admin

      JasmereE, thank you for reading my post, and leaving a comment. It is very easy to replace the chain, or the bar, there is no blade, the chain is your blade on a chainsaw, and they will last a long time. They are easy to sharpen, and replace.
      Thanks
      Bob

  8. Nikola Petkovic

    Chainsaw Sawmills!
    Excellent tool. My dad has one. I think it’s like this. I’ve never worked with that, but I see my father doing this for a long time.Intersting tool.. 🙂

    • admin

      Nikola, thank you for reading my post, and leaving a comment. These sawmills are very popular and I am not surprised your father has one, you can do a lot with one.
      Thanks
      Bob

  9. Dan Stevens

    That is a lot of useful information about sawmills. The information is provided in a manner that was easy to read and understand. I enjoy working and building things out of wood but haven’t thought about actually milling the boards that I use. I just purchase them from an area lumberyard. I could see how having one of these portable saw mills could come in handy if I was going to use a lot of lumber.

    • admin

      Dan thank you for reading my post, and leaving a comment
      Thanks
      Bob

  10. Kelly Oves

    Great article! I now have a better idea of sawmills for what I want to use for some projects coming up! Thanks for the information!

    • admin

      Kelly, thank you for reading my post and leaving a comment
      Thanks
      Bob

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