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Urban Lumber Re-use coming to TX & Woodmizer WM1000 has arrived!!

by dcg4403
posted 10-20-2017 09:49 PM


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52 replies

52 replies so far

View Rich's profile

Rich

5621 posts in 1366 days


#1 posted 10-20-2017 11:49 PM

Since you brought it up, yes, I am curious what a blade costs.

Looks like you’re set for some serious milling. Very cool!

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

View ArtMann's profile

ArtMann

1480 posts in 1593 days


#2 posted 10-21-2017 03:05 PM

I have a couple of comments. Pardon me if they sound a little negative. First, urban and suburban trees are notorious for being full of metal. Even if the big band saw will slice through it without damage, a normal table or band saw would not. Second, why buy a generator to power a motor to power a saw when you can power the saw directly from the utility? Alternatively, you could use the engine to power the mill directly and eliminate the enormous inefficiency of converting mechanical energy to electrical energy and then from electrical energy back to mechanical energy again. Can you generate power at a lower pollution level than the power company? I have some doubts about that.

View Gilley23's profile

Gilley23

489 posts in 1159 days


#3 posted 10-21-2017 04:14 PM

This is awesome! Can’t wait to see it in action!

View Gilley23's profile

Gilley23

489 posts in 1159 days


#4 posted 10-21-2017 04:17 PM

Artman, nobody powers anything directly from the utility, there’s always a conversion of at least one transformer before it gets to you. Natural gas and propane are pretty clean fuels.

With any lumber there’s a risk of metal. Scan it first.

View AZWoody's profile

AZWoody

1477 posts in 2001 days


#5 posted 10-21-2017 04:34 PM



Artman, nobody powers anything directly from the utility

- Gilley23

What?

View Rich's profile

Rich

5621 posts in 1366 days


#6 posted 10-21-2017 04:55 PM

Something tells me the 480V motor might be a factor in choosing to use a generator. That service might not have been currently available at his location, and the cost to add it likely prohibitive.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

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bigblockyeti

6577 posts in 2497 days


#7 posted 10-21-2017 05:23 PM

80,000 kW, that’s some serious power! I thought the 250kW generators I used to work on were big. By my math that’s 1/25th of the Hoover dam’s capacity.

-- "Lack of effort will result in failure with amazing predictability" - Me

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sawdustdad

379 posts in 1662 days


#8 posted 10-21-2017 11:56 PM



80,000 kW, that s some serious power! I thought the 250kW generators I used to work on were big. By my math that s 1/25th of the Hoover dam s capacity.

- bigblockyeti

I think he means 80 kw, not 80,000 kw (which would be 80 Megawatts)

-- Murphy's Carpentry Corollary #3: Half of all boards cut to a specific length will be too short.

View ArtMann's profile

ArtMann

1480 posts in 1593 days


#9 posted 10-22-2017 12:36 AM

If you are saying that with a straight face then there is absolutely nothing this old electrical engineer can do to educate you. I predict this poor fellow is going to pay more than twice as much for energy as he would if he were buying it from the utility company, He will produce close to twice as much pollution per killowatt-hour doing it.


Artman, nobody powers anything directly from the utility, there s always a conversion of at least one transformer before it gets to you. Natural gas and propane are pretty clean fuels.

With any lumber there s a risk of metal. Scan it first.

- Gilley23


View Rich's profile

Rich

5621 posts in 1366 days


#10 posted 10-22-2017 12:54 AM



If you are saying that with a straight face then there is absolutely nothing this old electrical engineer can do to educate you. I predict this poor fellow is going to pay more than twice as much for energy as he would if he were buying it from the utility company, He will produce close to twice as much pollution per killowatt-hour doing it.

- ArtMann

As a retired Electrical Engineer myself, I’d be curious where you got those figures (actually, I think I know where they came from, but this is polite company).

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

View ArtMann's profile

ArtMann

1480 posts in 1593 days


#11 posted 10-22-2017 01:47 PM

My post was a prediction and therefore speculative. I don’t want to make up for your laziness by looking up all the necessary references. However, I will summarize a few facts I found in about 30 seconds from a Penn State white paper. I would assume you would find this a valid source of information.

Thermal/chemical efficiency of a steam plant 85%

Thermal/chemical efficiency of an automobile engine 25%

Thermal/chemical efficiency of a large electric motor 90%

Of course, these figures aren’t the whole story. There will be other thermal and mechanical losses from all three sources, depending on the system. Some of these are addressed in the same white paper.

It is obvious from these figures, as imprecise as they may be, that the most efficient way to run the band saw mill is using electric energy from the utility company. Of course, utility companies buy propane at a fraction of the cost of a consumer.

I suppose I don’t need to mention the place from which you should extract your head.

https://www.ems.psu.edu/~radovic/Chapter4.pdf

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Lazyman

5446 posts in 2164 days


#12 posted 10-22-2017 02:35 PM

I hope this works out for you. It has always bothered me to see trees just thrown away and I have toyed with the idea of getting a small portable mill to turn some of it into lumber. It would seem that pruning services would jump at the chance to save a few bucks donating wood rather than having paying to dump it. I frequently stop to pick up some small pieces that I can mill on my bandsaw but I can only handle so much. Here in Plano, TX, they at least turn it into mulch or compost for reuse instead of taking it to the landfill but I see lots of great wood go to the chipper. Last time I dropped off some brush at the dump, I came back with some pretty nice chunks of wood.

I am curious what types of wood you expect to have. In Austin, it would seem that you would frequently see cedar, live oak and mesquite as natives. I noticed that you show some walnut on your Facebook page which is not the most common wood in the Austin area. Where did you get that from?

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

View tmasondarnell's profile

tmasondarnell

130 posts in 2566 days


#13 posted 10-22-2017 05:38 PM

Hey, I am in Manor (outside of Austin) and I am very excited to see you show up.

I will following for updates.

View dcg4403's profile

dcg4403

35 posts in 2362 days


#14 posted 10-23-2017 03:23 PM

Thanks for the comments, folks. Wasn’t expecting to get nailed on the generator choice! But all a good debate. So the primary reasoning was correctly mentioned by Rich. To bring 3 phase power to our location, we are talking over $40K in expenses. Start doing the math and the returns on that investment will never be reached for many decades. Plus, we are working towards growth plans for an even larger facility in about 3 years which is more industrial oriented yard space.

And yes, it is 80 kW. I ran all the numbers on diesel, which is less overall maintenance, longer operating life and less costly to run in fuel. However, diesel generators have a high environmental footprint and are much louder when running. Me love some diesel but we are stewards of the environment so not purely about operating costs. So natural gas / propane it is for at least the next 2-3 years.

Blades are about $125 a pop. Could be worse but we certainly want to avoid metal as much as possible.

And regarding metal, this isn’t my 1st rodeo. This is simply a downside of urban trees and all must deal with in urban log re-use. We try our best with good quality metal detectors over each mill pass, but I have hit and will certainly hit more metal and rocks at some point in the future. It is NOT a reason for avoiding urban trees, just a cost of doing business and something that must be considered in terms of your safety protocols.

CONSTRUCTION UPDATES: We have our forms up and are adding rebar today. We hope to pour the foundation this coming Wed.

-- Devin Ginther, Refined Elements LLC & TX Urban Sawmill LLC, Owner

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tomsteve

1038 posts in 1996 days


#15 posted 10-24-2017 08:47 PM

this is awesome,dcg!
i hope this turns into a build thread! would love to see when ya get set up and running,too- videos/pictures of what youre cutting.

View dcg4403's profile

dcg4403

35 posts in 2362 days


#16 posted 10-25-2017 05:40 PM

Tomsteve – Absolutely. I will keep posting updates all the way to our 1st milled log (hopefully by mid-Dec to mid-Jan). Not much information about the WM1000 so hopefully it is helpful and somewhat interesting to others.

We are schedule to pour crete tomorrow and should have more pics by Friday.

Dev

-- Devin Ginther, Refined Elements LLC & TX Urban Sawmill LLC, Owner

View Sarit's profile

Sarit

552 posts in 3916 days


#17 posted 10-25-2017 10:07 PM

It would have been more “green” to run a diesel motor on biodiesel and/or used vegetable oil.

Since trees have lots of branches that are only fit for the wood chipper, you can be even more green by turning those woodchips into a fuel called “syngas” which you can probably burn directly in a nat-gas generator or gas engine. You use a machine called a wood gasifier to perform this conversion. If you use it to power a generator and you end up with an excess of wood chips, then it might be worth it to sell that power back to the utility/get credits so you have free electricity as well.

View AZWoody's profile

AZWoody

1477 posts in 2001 days


#18 posted 10-25-2017 10:35 PM



It would have been more “green” to run a diesel motor on biodiesel and/or used vegetable oil.

Since trees have lots of branches that are only fit for the wood chipper, you can be even more green by turning those woodchips into a fuel called “syngas” which you can probably burn directly in a nat-gas generator or gas engine. You use a machine called a wood gasifier to perform this conversion. If you use it to power a generator and you end up with an excess of wood chips, then it might be worth it to sell that power back to the utility/get credits so you have free electricity as well.

- Sarit

Eh, let’s be honest. Bring green is generally a lot more expensive than it’s worth. If it costs a lot more to get service to the shop then you need a generator and it’s a toss up between diesel and natural gas in terms of costs. Fluctuations go back and forth between which is more affordable. If it was me, I would skip talking about the whole green angle and just do what it takes to run the machine like you’re doing. The more you try to say you’re doing something for a special purpose, there will be many others trying to tell you you’re doing it wrong.

Good luck with the project. I’m thinking of getting a slab mill just for the big things to run in conjunction with the portable sawmill I have already. I have considered the WM1000 and maybe switch to that if I see I’m not going portable at all with my other sawmill.

View Sarit's profile

Sarit

552 posts in 3916 days


#19 posted 10-25-2017 10:59 PM

Being [sp] green is generally a lot more expensive than it’s worth.
Its important to take into account the actual situation before ruling something out due to what’s generally true.
If a business is in the realm of generating a lot of waste that they end up having to pay someone to get rid of then it often makes economic sense to figure out ways to turn that waste stream into something they can use or sell instead. “Green” in this case means green in your pocket.

View AZWoody's profile

AZWoody

1477 posts in 2001 days


#20 posted 10-25-2017 11:09 PM



Being [sp] green is generally a lot more expensive than it’s worth.
Its important to take into account the actual situation before ruling something out due to what s generally true.
If a business is in the realm of generating a lot of waste that they end up having to pay someone to get rid of then it often makes economic sense to figure out ways to turn that waste stream into something they can use or sell instead. “Green” in this case means green in your pocket.

- Sarit

I run a sawmill so I do have some idea of this. The cost to be able to turn waste into energy is not just using the waste but also all the extra equipment involved. Also, do you even know how much limbs and pieces of wood you would need to be able to run a generator that can operate the sawmill? I would guess that it would take more than the limbs and involve needing to use most of the tree as well. This is a salvage operation so it’s not like he’s bringing in trees by the truckload like a commercial sawmill and, even if he did bring in logs, then there is not as much byproduct as you would think.

I’ve also done work on off-grid power and it’s nowhere near as efficient as people think, it’s expensive and the R&M costs are considerable. A regular generator, gasoline, diesel or propane is the most reliable.

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Sarit

552 posts in 3916 days


#21 posted 10-26-2017 12:14 AM

The fact that they are salvaging trees not prepared logs is why I’m thinking this might be viable.
The local tree service/arborists in my area also gives away free wood chips. They maintain a list and when a client doesn’t want the chips on their property they call down the list and deliver to the first person/business that wants it, free of charge. I’m pretty sure if you tell them that you’ll take both the logs and the chips, you’ll immediately go to the top of the list.

In addition, there might be gov’t and or utility rebates/incentive/credits that might further offset the cost of the extra equipment. Ideally, a utility that lets you feed power back to the grid for credits would let you run a smaller generator for a longer period without the need to store that power locally would be best.

Free wood, free power, free delivery, isn’t that worth at least investigating?

I don’t know what the exact conversion is but I found this chart which someone can probably work out the conversion to see how many yards of woodchips is needed to run a 80kw generator at full capacity.

View ArtMann's profile

ArtMann

1480 posts in 1593 days


#22 posted 10-26-2017 12:58 AM

Key information was missing from the original poster’s first post. The financial impracticality of running 3-phase power to the sawmill was not shared. That little detail makes the whole configuration a lot more sensible to me. There is only one other comment I would make and the OP may have already investigated it. Why not run the saw directly from the motor rather than taking the lossy path of converting the mechanical energy to electrical energy and then converting it back to mechanical energy? Maybe the generator power is going to be used for a lot of other things too.

View Sarit's profile

Sarit

552 posts in 3916 days


#23 posted 10-26-2017 02:20 AM

I’m not an electrician, but it seems like you’d need a 480v 3phase step up transformer if you only had 240v 3phase power. Something like this: https://www.platt.com/platt-electric-supply/Dry-Type-Transformers-480-240-120/Acme/T3075K0023B/product.aspx?zpid=184730 for $3k. A bit cheaper than a 80kw 3phase 480v generator like this: https://www.electricgeneratorsdirect.com/Generac-Commercial-QT08054KNAX-Standby-Generator/p50735.html for $17.6k.
There’s a commercial 20kw gasifier that runs on wood chips for $19k (Made in the USA): https://youtu.be/xZd2kEgxqK4
I’m assuming that the mill is running at a %25 duty ratio so if you include the gasifier’s grid tie module (possibly another $5k), you can run the gasifier unit at full power the whole day to produce the same amount of power that is consumed by the mill.

If it were my shop and I didn’t have 480v/3ph power, I would still get the transformer to run the mill off shop power. Then if I wanted to go the nat-gas generator route, I would install a 240v/3ph version to power the shop w/ a transfer switch. That way the whole shop can still run when the power is out. Additionally any other power generation that you add (gasifier, solar, wind, etc) provides power to the whole shop.

In effect there’s a ~$7k premium to be extra green/free power. Your workers will also have to maintain the equipment/fill the hopper, but some of that work may get offset by having less waste to manage.

View Rich's profile

Rich

5621 posts in 1366 days


#24 posted 10-26-2017 06:45 AM


I m not an electrician, but it seems like you d need a 480v 3phase step up transformer if you only had 240v 3phase power. Something like this:

- Sarit

You’re assuming he has 240V 3-PH at his location. What difference does it make to you how he goes about his business? All of the hand-wringing about burning branches for power seems strange to me.

Like AZWoody said, being “green” is often more expensive and less “green” than one might think. It is such an obsession these days that I think common sense is often ignored.

I am an Electrical Engineer with a BS from the University of Wisconsin and a MS from Marquette University, so I know something about what I’m saying.

I could go on, but I suspect that your mind is made up.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

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dbray45

3388 posts in 3553 days


#25 posted 10-26-2017 12:10 PM

To acquire the trees – a few ideas.

Contact the area public schools, large commercial property management companies, and the utility companies. As they develop, they look for places to put the trees/lumber.

If the schools have wood shops (all are gone here in MD), tell them that you will give back XX% after it is dried and cut.

I have some really nice aromatic cedar that I bought from a local mill (now gone) that was cut down when they added on one to of the local high schools. When they cut down a tree, they delivered to the mill. Helped him keep the prices low as well.

-- David in Palm Bay, FL

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scr5008

26 posts in 1764 days


#26 posted 10-26-2017 01:10 PM

I’m in Austin and looking fwd to more updates!

View Lazyman's profile

Lazyman

5446 posts in 2164 days


#27 posted 10-26-2017 01:38 PM


...
There s a commercial 20kw gasifier that runs on wood chips for $19k (Made in the USA): https://youtu.be/xZd2kEgxqK4
I m assuming that the mill is running at a %25 duty ratio so if you include the gasifier s grid tie module (possibly another $5k), you can run the gasifier unit at full power the whole day to produce the same amount of power that is consumed by the mill.
...
- Sarit

The 20 kW Power Pallet is interesting. It only takes about 40 pounds of biomass to generate 15 kWH (75% capacity) which sounds pretty impressive for a turnkey solution. Only problem is that the lower powered version (30 HP) of the WM1000 requires 22.4 kW. Also, according to the PP brochure, sawdust and wood pellets are not suitable biomass (and void the warranty) so they would need an additional chipper, which they might need anyway, a dryer and a sifter to convert waste wood into into a suitable form, not to mention a little labor to process, feed and maintain the generator. Still an interesting idea. Thanks for sharing.

Regardless, we’ve sort of gotten away from the most important news here. Someone is taking a risk to turn waste wood into something useful, beside mulch and compost.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

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dcg4403

35 posts in 2362 days


#28 posted 10-26-2017 03:48 PM

For those interested, we keep daily updates on our facebook pages at /refinedelements OR /txurbansawmill

Love any help in spreading the words to others in Texas and beyond that may be interested in what we are trying to accomplish over the next 5 years. We really need an organic movement on this to help in gaining traction. I’d like to get the City of Austin looking into this much closer.

Lazyman – Thanks for the gasifier link. I will check it out!

Gotta run. 9 cubic yards arrives in about an hour!!

-- Devin Ginther, Refined Elements LLC & TX Urban Sawmill LLC, Owner

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cabmaker

1745 posts in 3586 days


#29 posted 10-27-2017 12:23 PM

you carry on neighbor !!!

Your endeavor is just the sort of thing that made this country great !

Your imagination is your only limit !

Enjoy the journey ! (always remember from where you came)

View ArtMann's profile

ArtMann

1480 posts in 1593 days


#30 posted 10-27-2017 03:00 PM

Here are a few observations based on Sarit’s data. They serve to illustrate why wood gassification is wildly impractical for this application. It takes 10 tons of wet wood chips to equal the energy content of 0.14 gallons of diesel fuel. According to one source I read, it takes about 1 gallon per hour in diesel fuel to generate 20HP. In a day, the engine would burn about 8 gallons. From Sarit’s conversion, (8/.14) *10 = 571 tons of sawdust. But wait – there’s more! Sarit’s table only refers to heating. An internal combustion engine is only 25% thermally efficient so it would take 4 times that much sawdust or about 2284 TONS PER DAY of sawdust. I am not sure the bandsaw mill would generate that much waste in a year. That doesn’t take into account the gross inefficiency of wood gassification. The reality is actually much worse than what I have calculated but I don’t want to go into the reasons I can think of on a woodworking forum.

Sarit’s post about electrical power conversion reinforces his own admission that he is not an electrician. He obviously doesn’t even know what 3-phase power is.

This thread serves to illustrate why engineers, in addition to environmentalists, should be a part of this kind of decision making.

Edit note: I have been trying to find out the true equivalency of gasified sawdust compared to fossil fuels and so far, I haven’t been successful. Does anyone know where this information might be?

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tomsteve

1038 posts in 1996 days


#31 posted 10-27-2017 03:41 PM

if i wasnt old(er) and my body breaking down, i think id see ifffen ya’ll were hiring. looks like fun!

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dcg4403

35 posts in 2362 days


#32 posted 10-27-2017 08:46 PM

Hey folks,

In case you want more frequent updates, we try to stay pretty active on Facebook at:

https://www.facebook.com/txurbansawmill

While as an engineer I really do appreciate the gassification comments, this subject matter is a bit outside of the purpose of this thread. Like to keep the focus on urban forestry re-use and what we are trying to accomplish here in Texas. Along of course with as many updates as I can keep up with regarding the sawmill installation & lessons learned. If you start another thread, I’m in.

Back to the point, so we successfully poured 10 cubic yards yesterday. We ran short by five 80 lb bags so there was a quick run to Home Depot. But overall went well. Concrete work is never fun, for me at least.

If you notice the anchor bolts, there are a total of 80 of them. They will secure a total of 20 fabricated columns (I-beams with top & bottom plates) at ~39” COC. So the rails will be raise about 24” off the ground. This maximizes the sawmill capacity at 67” diameter logs but also gives us room to add all the hydraulics for log positioning, dogs, etc.

Our tracks have a length of 34 feet. So we can cut so pretty big logs….length and diameter.

So next? We begin to fabricate those 20 steel columns. This is going to take use several weeks as we are preparing for a big show at the TX American Institute of Architects at the Austin Convention Center, where we hope to build some strong relationship with engineering construction firms to kick-off what we hope to be the biggest re-use project in TX sometime in 2018! Wish us luck there.

So might be 1-2 weeks before I have more updates.

-- Devin Ginther, Refined Elements LLC & TX Urban Sawmill LLC, Owner

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Gilley23

489 posts in 1159 days


#33 posted 10-27-2017 11:52 PM

Awesome!
That time in between will give that concrete a little bit to cure up and saddle up for the beast that is ahead of it.

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Lazyman

5446 posts in 2164 days


#34 posted 10-28-2017 04:16 AM

Artman, the table that Sarit provided just appears to be a BTU equivalent for burning wood (and other fuels) not gasification so that data is probably not that useful for comparing fuels for generating electricity.

According to the sales info from All Power Labs. their 20kW Power Pallet generator can produce 15 kWH in 1 hour, running at 75% load, using just 40 lbs of biomass. To put that into perspective, 1 cubic foot of dried red oak weighs about 44 lbs. From what I could find online, 1 gallon of diesel can generate about 10-11 kWH, depending upon the generator. So if you have a reliable (and free) source of wood chips, the Power Pallet starts to look pretty viable, at least on paper.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

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dcg4403

35 posts in 2362 days


#35 posted 10-30-2017 04:00 PM

Gilley23 – Sure thing! We are removing the forms today but that’s it about it for this week.

Stay tuned and thanks for all the interested on our TX Urban Sawmill Facebook page. Always great to see such interest and support!

Devin

-- Devin Ginther, Refined Elements LLC & TX Urban Sawmill LLC, Owner

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Sarit

552 posts in 3916 days


#36 posted 10-31-2017 05:48 PM

Artman, not sure if you realize, but you’re reading the chart wrong.
The first row is # of mmBTU/unit, read as “How many mmBTU you get per unit”. So 1 ton of wood chips is = 10 mmBTU. Therefore 1 mmBTU = 1/10 ton wood chips.
1 gal of fuel produces 0.14 mmBTU, therefore 1 mmBTU = 7.14 gal fuel

1 mmBTU 1/10 ton woodchip (200lbs) 7.14 gal fuel

Notice that the 3rd row, Cost/mmBTU matches what I’m saying. It takes only a 1/10 of the unit price ($40) to make 1 mmBTU @ $4. It also takes 7.14gal * $3.25/gal = $23.21/mmBTU for fuel.

Lazyman’s data from All Power Labs is probably the most accurate data to use as they have to empirically measure both consumption and output.

Also not sure where you got “He obviously doesn’t even know what 3-phase power is.”
What specifically have I said to make you feel that way?
I would say that not realizing how outlandish your calculations were serves to discredit you much more than me.

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dcg4403

35 posts in 2362 days


#37 posted 11-01-2017 03:30 PM

Sarit & Lazyman,

Would you be so kind as to start a separate thread regarding your BTU and efficiency debate? It is a bit distracting to others who are focused on learning more about our efforts installing the WM1000 here in Texas. Thank you for your kind consideration.

Devin

-- Devin Ginther, Refined Elements LLC & TX Urban Sawmill LLC, Owner

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avsmusic1

642 posts in 1462 days


#38 posted 11-01-2017 05:59 PM



Sarit & Lazyman,

Would you be so kind as to start a separate thread regarding your BTU and efficiency debate? It is a bit distracting to others who are focused on learning more about our efforts installing the WM1000 here in Texas. Thank you for your kind consideration.

Devin

- dcg4403

Respectfully seconded

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Rich

5621 posts in 1366 days


#39 posted 11-01-2017 07:35 PM


Respectfully seconded

- avsmusic1

I think the obsession with impressing us with genius is kind of funny, but yeah, it’s time to let Devin have his thread back.

+3

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

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dcg4403

35 posts in 2362 days


#40 posted 11-15-2017 01:24 AM

Hey folks,

Check out this video that is a part of a series focused on TX Urban Re-use and Re-purposing. Please share to support our motto: “Help us save Texas, one tree at a time!”

https://www.facebook.com/RefinedElements/videos/2050785918491624/

So I have no other major updates with our mill installation other than to say that we are working on the generator slab and will start fabricating our column supports over the next 2 weeks. I will post images after Thanksgiving. We are trying to get it completed for Woodmizer’s 2-3 day visit in mid-December. I hope we can make this happen as the holidays are not helping!

-- Devin Ginther, Refined Elements LLC & TX Urban Sawmill LLC, Owner

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dcg4403

35 posts in 2362 days


#41 posted 12-13-2017 01:57 PM

So I don’t have any significant updates. We’ve fabricated all 22 supporting columns and will be dry fitting the entire rail system this week. We’ll then start adding all the log cross-members. I attached a few pictures but you can always see our updates at:

Texas Urban Sawmill facebook updates

Our biggest challenge right now is re-tapping our generator to 480V. Turns out, it is a bit more difficult that originally planned so we are working with Holt Cat there.

-- Devin Ginther, Refined Elements LLC & TX Urban Sawmill LLC, Owner

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dcg4403

35 posts in 2362 days


#42 posted 12-21-2017 11:56 PM

So a few more updates. We’ve complete “stage I” of the column fabrication and have the mill rails level within 0.1 degrees from both side to side and along the length of each 30 foot rail. I’m eager to see if we can mill 1/8” veneer within a tight tolerance from our logs. I have some creative furniture ideas on that end. Needless to say, we have been super critical about getting everyone square and parallel. Probably more so than needed but that’s the engineer in me.

We’ve welded all the “arms” which ultimately support the I-beam cross members. These are the supports that the logs will ultimately rest on.

Our main challenge at the moment is retapping our 70kW generator for 480V. I underestimated this effort. Oh well. Hopefully are parts will arrive by January. There is apparently a 6-8 week lead time on the parts required for the retap. Lesson learned there. We could have been working on this end over 6 months ago. Bad project management on my part!

Probably won’t see any more updates till after New Years. We wish everyone a very, very Merry Xmas!!!

-- Devin Ginther, Refined Elements LLC & TX Urban Sawmill LLC, Owner

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Gilley23

489 posts in 1159 days


#43 posted 12-22-2017 12:35 AM

Wow that’s going to be a BEAST!

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chadirvin

35 posts in 2816 days


#44 posted 12-22-2017 02:33 PM

I would love to see the up and running in person.

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Steve

2082 posts in 1359 days


#45 posted 02-07-2018 03:40 PM

Any updates on this project?

View dcg4403's profile

dcg4403

35 posts in 2362 days


#46 posted 03-03-2018 12:58 PM

Sorry folks, we have been very busy!

We post weekly about our sawmill updates on our TX Urban Sawmill facebook page

I wish I had the time to re-post everything here but I do not.

Anyway, so this mill is INSTALLED & operational! We had Woodmizer out here from Tues – Friday. Our customer service technician was superb. I really can’t stress that.

Our major delay has been in converting our generator to 480V. The parts were slow to come but we finally got it re-tapped.

I am proud to say that WM said upon arrival that this was the best setup that had seen for the WM1000 and that we were far, far within their accuracy tolerance when it comes to the rails. Great! As an engineer and the fabricator, I was a bit worried that I wasn’t quite there. However, I always feel this way, regardless of the product or effort. No such thing as perfect.

I will post pics on following thread replies. The one issue that we run into is blade selection. Turns out we ordered a box of their standard softwood blades. But we are cutting TX pecan which is hard, hard, hard. So this particular blade would dive a bit more than desired when it hit the center of the crotch. So we have carbide blades coming along with their bi-metal version (for logs which are more likely to have metal objects).

I was impressed when WM claimed that their bi-metal will literally cut right through a railroad spike. Hope we never find out…..

-- Devin Ginther, Refined Elements LLC & TX Urban Sawmill LLC, Owner

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dcg4403

35 posts in 2362 days


#47 posted 03-03-2018 01:00 PM

Here we our final rails in our shop before installation.

-- Devin Ginther, Refined Elements LLC & TX Urban Sawmill LLC, Owner

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dcg4403

35 posts in 2362 days


#48 posted 03-03-2018 01:13 PM

Here are some installation pictures.

This thing is huge!!!! Our shelter needs to be about 18 feet high (we will start building next week along with our 1st 6000 BF kiln with Nyle units). Our goal is to add a second 10,000 BF Kiln around Oct / Nov timeframe. We should the largest urban lumber seller certainly in the southern US by the end of the year.

-- Devin Ginther, Refined Elements LLC & TX Urban Sawmill LLC, Owner

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dcg4403

35 posts in 2362 days


#49 posted 03-03-2018 01:23 PM

Next week, we will be permanently installing the wiring and hanging them across a pulley system. I also have to whip out the welder to mount our limit switches (in case we get need the end of the rails) and a few other minor things.

Then off to the shelter and kiln we head.

We will be officially open for business and offering sawmilling services to the general public the week of March 19th!

We will be cutting logs over 36” for $250/hr. However, I’m offering a discounted rate for at least March-April 2018 of $200/hour. We also have a blade sharpening surchage of $25. And we have a $200 blade replacement fee if a blade is destroying during cutting. We can cut large slabs faster than about anyone down here so I feel these rates are actually very, very competitive.

I cut a 48” TX pecan on a lucas chainsaw mill. It took about 4-5 hours to slab out that SINGLE log. That’s not only how hard TX pecan is but also how slow a lucas mill is in comparison. Ignoring log setup, our cut time would be no more than an hour using a carbide blade. I’d imagine much less but that’s to be determined soon enough.

Thanks for stopping by. Feel free to check out our daily updates on our FB page, too. We try to be very interactive….just a lot easier on my smartphone. Try to keep this thread as fresh as I can.

Devin

-- Devin Ginther, Refined Elements LLC & TX Urban Sawmill LLC, Owner

View bigblockyeti's profile

bigblockyeti

6577 posts in 2497 days


#50 posted 03-03-2018 04:26 PM

What was the driving factor in changing the generator to 480V? I’m guessing the primary drive motor running the mill would be 240/480V, is it not?

-- "Lack of effort will result in failure with amazing predictability" - Me

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