Timberking 1220 manual sawmill

  • Advertise with us
Review by HalDougherty posted 02-22-2011 07:43 PM 26531 views 2 times favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Timberking 1220 manual sawmill Timberking 1220 manual sawmill Timberking 1220 manual sawmill Click the pictures to enlarge them

Timberking has been selling sawmills for a long time and I’ve wanted my own for almost that long. It took a while to get everything together to purchase one. I went with a manual mill instead of a more expensive hydraulic model, first because of the extra expense for the more complicated sawmill. Second, I wanted to saw lumber to be used in my own products and to justify more expense, I would have had to be in a full time sawmill business. With this little mill, I can carve gunstocks and when a good log (maple, walnut or cherry) becomes available, I’ll saw it, stack & sticker it, dry it and then carve it into gunstocks. A manual mill is a lot more effort than a hydraulic assisted mill. So far I’ve sliced up 4 logs. One white ash, two red cedar, and one walnut. My mill has a 25 hp engine to power the saw and it cuts like a knife through butter. The saw head travels by turning a crank and down the tracks it goes. You can feel knots and slow the cut to keep the saw blade from making wavy cuts. There is another crank to raise and lower the saw head. I’ve only cut for about two hours, but the effort to cut a 20” log 12’ long wasn’t excessive at all. I bet a 34” white oak log that’s 16’ long will be a lot harder. I bought a harbor freight winch to load logs on the mill and I’ll use it with bigger logs to roll them on the mill and to turn them. My next project will be to weld up a support stand to mount the winch on the sawmill. Cleanup was just as easy, my leaf blower got all the dry dust off the mill and a few sweeps of my broom took care of the wet dust. The second picture here is a closeup of one of the roller guides. Timberking’s baby mill uses simple bearings and they’ve added grease fittings to make them last longer. The third photo shows my computer setworks. Woops, manual setworks. The inch scale shows where the blade is above the deck and the three scales on the right are set up to show 1” plus kerf, 1.25” plus kerf, and 1.5” plus kerf. Or you can do some simple math in your head or make your own scale. I do miss the setworks that I used on the B-20 I ran for a year. On the limited time I’ve run this mill, I’ll have to say the materials and construction techniques in this sawmill are first class. The mill is strong and I hope to be sawing with it for years. I didn’t get the optional trailer package because I have a good trailer that’s going to be only used to transport my mill. Log handling is a huge problem right now, but I’m building a log arch this week to haul logs from my woodlot. I’d recommend Timberking to anyone looking to make their own lumber.

-- Hal, Tennessee

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 4091 days

13 comments so far

View TreeBones's profile


1828 posts in 4877 days

#1 posted 02-22-2011 08:56 PM

Thanks, great info for all who are thinking about buying a mill.

-- Ron, Twain Harte, Ca. Portable on site Sawmill Service

View Div's profile


1653 posts in 3794 days

#2 posted 02-22-2011 10:32 PM

My mill is also manual and the advantage of that, apart from cost, less that can go wrong!

-- Div @ the bottom end of Africa. "A woodworker's sharpest tool should be his mind."

View Cosmicsniper's profile


2202 posts in 4012 days

#3 posted 02-22-2011 10:53 PM

Great review!

I have 40 acres of wall to wall oak trees and pecans. This must happen soon!!!

-- jay,

View SASmith               's profile


1850 posts in 3841 days

#4 posted 02-22-2011 11:26 PM

Thanks for the review. I would go with the manual mill also.

-- Scott Smith, Southern Illinois

View Brad_Nailor's profile


2545 posts in 4811 days

#5 posted 02-23-2011 03:04 AM

That thing is awesome! I wish I had the money to buy one, and the trees to slice up!


View cosmicturner's profile


403 posts in 4249 days

#6 posted 02-23-2011 03:51 AM

Thanks for the review….I have wanted one a long time….we have so much free wood in my area

-- Cosmicturner

View spunwood's profile


1202 posts in 3690 days

#7 posted 02-23-2011 06:31 AM

That is a beast. Love to see how that things works. Is it basically a bandsaw?

-- I came, I was conquered, I was born again. ἵνα ὦσιν ἓν

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 4091 days

#8 posted 02-23-2011 11:46 AM


Yes, it’s a big 25 hp bandsaw. The side rails that support the saw head are 34” wide and the adjustable throat will open to 29 1/2” for the widest cut. It came with a 2 sections of log deck and I added a third section. Each section is 7 1/2 feet in length so I can saw an 18’ log with room to spare. Only one problem… A 35” log (with slabs chainsawed off the sides to get the log to fit) that’s 16” long weighs over 3500 lbs. I’ve got to get that monster through the woods to a place I can get it on a trailer, (which I don’t have yet), then move it near my sawmill, load it on the mill, and turn it after I get one side flat. I bought a 3000 lb winch and I’m making a support for it to fit next to the mill and I’ll use it to pull the logs up the ramp and onto the deck. It will also be used to turn the log on the deck.

-- Hal, Tennessee

View STL's profile


68 posts in 3686 days

#9 posted 02-23-2011 12:41 PM

Thanks for posting such an informative post! I love my TK1220, too. I’m glad they added grease fittings on the rollers, and I like the cutting scale on yours better, too (mine is basically just a magnetic ruler; ie, no kerf allowances). I drilled the shields on my guides to allow greasing, and it has worked well. Glad you’re happy with the mill!

-- Dan Siggers, Alabama,

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 4091 days

#10 posted 02-23-2011 01:05 PM


Mine came with the same simple ruler, the one in the photo was designed by Matt at Timberking. I didn’t know about other cutting scales till I saw the video about setting up, sawing, changing blades, etc. that came with my mill. I gave Matt a call and he sent the scale. It works great and should come with the sawmill.

-- Hal, Tennessee

View Ken90712's profile


17902 posts in 4042 days

#11 posted 02-23-2011 08:23 PM

What a great tool you have purchased. I’m kinda jealous! Congrats!

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View ic3ss's profile


399 posts in 3630 days

#12 posted 02-23-2011 11:09 PM

My buddy bought one of those used, had to drive to norther CA to get it. He used it to mill about twenty acres of cedar that he inherited. Dude made a killing having this mill to sell boards instead of just felled trees. Nice mill.

-- "I am endeavoring, ma'am, to construct a mnemonic memory circuit using stone knives and bear skins."

View RobertT's profile


70 posts in 3635 days

#13 posted 02-24-2011 04:19 AM

Nice mill please post up pics of your log arch when you get it complete. Moving logs with out a tractor is nearly impossible.

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