Shop-built bandsaw sawmill #1: the plan

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by Sodabowski posted 06-30-2017 08:23 PM 1367 reads 1 time favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Shop-built bandsaw sawmill series Part 2: first welds and preparing the threaded rods - July 2016 »

Hi guys,

After visiting Les fils de J. George several years ago for the first time, my vision for a homemade bandsaw turned into something more sophisticated than the existing stuff. So I started making plans and brainstorming around the idea of the “Bandsaw Sawmill 2.0”. Seeing the “scie au bois montant” at George’s, which is a traditional saw cutting into a stepwise climbing chunk of wood, and which produces cuts of utmost quality without tearing the fibers, I really thought my sawmill-to-come should allow for a similar cut quality. More on that precise topic once the sawmill will be done. For now let me show the general shape of the project:

This is the 3D render of the overall idea. The wheels will be 50cm Ø (almost 19” 3/4), with a 1 meter wide frame (39” 1/2) giving around 64 cm (25”) maximum board width. The Z axis will also be 1 m high, with a useable span of around 45 cm (around 18”). Maximum board thickness will be 18 cm (7”), and the cutting length will only be limited by the bed and rails length. For starters it will be 2m (78 ” 1/2), but I will quickly add another two meters since the logs I have saved are longer than that.

The structure will be 3 cm (1” 3/8) square steel tube (cold-formed) which will be enough for my needs and expected feed rates. The Z axis will be actuated with four M10×1.5 threaded rods, with the corresponding nuts in the cutting head assembly. I want precision and smoothness for this machine, since I will also use it for veneer.

-- Thomas - there are no problems, there are only solutions.

5 comments so far

View Redoak49's profile


4340 posts in 2589 days

#1 posted 06-30-2017 08:31 PM

Interesting idea… the square steel tube large enough and strong enough to adequately tension a blade?

View Sodabowski's profile


2388 posts in 3433 days

#2 posted 06-30-2017 08:50 PM

Yes, the 3D render is only the general shape, that tube is quite thick and can take a beating. I’ll be putting at least two bars between the wheels, and if tension is an issue I will double them up. I won’t be using huge blades though, 1” wide maximum. My main concern is blade kerf, I really prefer thin blades and a slow (automated) feed, to get the most out of my stock.

-- Thomas - there are no problems, there are only solutions.

View Porchfish's profile


860 posts in 3133 days

#3 posted 07-01-2017 02:12 PM

Do It !

-- The pig caught under the fence is always the one doing all the squealing !

View Schwieb's profile


1896 posts in 4062 days

#4 posted 07-02-2017 02:34 PM

This is something I have always wanted to do, Thomas. It’s like so many things I’d love to make, just getting my round tuit.

-- Dr. Ken, Florida - Durch harte arbeit werden Träume wahr.

View mafe's profile


12286 posts in 3690 days

#5 posted 07-10-2017 09:24 AM

Wonderful project!
Best thoughts,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics