Rookie Woodworker’s Ask: How To Use A Chainsaw Mill?

How to use a chainsaw mill

Never ask a woodworker if they have ever heard about chainsaw mill. It’s going to hurt their pride! Why? Because this tool is one of the most basic gears they use, no matter pro or beginner.

It’s pretty simple to use though. You won’t have to take a separate class for getting trained in chainsaw mill. A simple guide can get you started with how to use a chainsaw mill. Today, I aim to do so!

Let’s Understand the Concept First!

I want you to know about Alaskan mill! Now, what’s that? Chill, it’s an alternative name for chainsaw mill. The name is this way referring to its simple functionality. You will need to ensure a straight edge with the log plank up.

The mill will hold a guide bar within to align properly with straight reference edge. So that you can easily make a parallel cut. Once you get a cut with the straight edge it’s pretty simple afterward. You’ll just need to make the following cuts using the first slice mark. Easy Peasy!

Another concept you’ll have to understand is about adjust ability. It’s obviously a necessary feature that any chainsaw mill must have.

You can’t choose a specific cut measurement to use with different wood pieces. So, what you can do is simply use the adjust ability in a quality chainsaw mill. It will help you to accommodate dissimilar sizes of guide bars.

Safety Should Not Be the Second Lead!

You might believe making a proper cut is what only matters. But that’s completely a wrong perception that beginners will start with. You have to be more concerned about safety at beginning. Safety should not be the supporting lead of your main wood drama. It’s actually equal to the main lead, especially for beginners.

Cuts and slices are dangerous! So, for sure you can’t keep up without them. Always make yourself quite knowledgeable about chainsaw practices. You should never sidestep PPEs. That’s Personal Protective Equipment! Here are a few pointers for the absolute knows-nothing folks!

Be aware of slabs and beams. These are quite heavy. Don’t get excited with shifting and lifting such chores. It’s going to be quite complicating cutting these. Have someone to assist you, go for smaller slices. Get some machinery help also. Say bye to over ambitious desires!

Don’t rush while using chainsaw mill. This is not your regular milling project. A chainsaw milling task will need you to spend some time and patience over it for good and safer results.

Since it’s quite a time consuming, you’ll be dealing with Vibrations, dust, and loud noises. Another thing to think about is the finer dust created by it. So, use a good quality vapor mask. The dusk mask might be not good for too long sessions. That’s why go for vapor ones.

Always go for strong chocks. Raise up the log a bit and then cut it into shape accordingly. So that you don’t get a bad back afterward. The log should never roll or crush. Make sure of that!

Always get a standard chain to mill or cut lumps and sticking branches. Go with proper preparation forever.

The whole chain stays exposed throughout start and finish. This can be dangerous. Make sure you use the straight edge for all cuts.

Don’t work in a busy space. Make sure everything is cleared including pets, passerby or observers. A curious child making way to you midway of milling is really not welcoming. Use cordon off areas and signs if necessary.

Step by Step Process!

Step 1.

Use a straight edge at the beginning. So that the mill can follow and make cuts. Use a ladder that comes with good weight and rigidity. Aluminum built ladders are nice at this. Make sure to use the edge for both starting and finishing.

Step 2.

Be sure to position the log properly. You want to raise it up. Using some slope down the log length will also help a lot. This will make sure the results are consistent. Use the gravity to have a nice cut. This will help to get an effortless feed pressure.

Step 3.

Once you are sure about a strong setup, time to make the first cut. Make sure the chainsaw is completely fueled. Now with mounted in the mill, rest it on the ground to start sawing. Let the chain brake stay on. You want to place it on a straight edge just like a dry run.

Step 4.

You can use aux oiler at a steady speed. Now you should take chain brake off and use the saw on WOT (Wide Open Throttle) to make a cut evenly and slowly. Let the mill get guided into a cut.

Step 5.

Don’t apply too much pressure. Just be sure it makes for flat. You also need to put even pressure on mill rails.

Step 6.

Once you are done with one-foot cut almost, use throttle lock to maintain WOT. Adjust your grip and have better control at this point.

Step 7.

Next, you should go for three to four feet cut. Once you reach there use a wedge. Now carefully pop it in kerf position. So that there is no top slab pinching chain. Keep on doing it until you get wanted results.

Step 8.

Once you get around the end, let throttle lock release now. Don’t lose your control over the mill. Use the chain brake and exit cut.

Step 9.

Keep the mill at side and let it cool down. Don’t stop the engine right away after doing a hardcore cut. You should get some help to move the stack and slab out.

Your cut is done!

Signing Out!

Well, I tried to include everything a beginner needs to know on How to use a chainsaw mill.  But if you still want to ask a question, comment it down. Let me know!

Using a chainsaw mill is easy. You just have to maintain the rules of patience and practice. Don’t give up and you’ll make pro cuts really quick. Good Luck!

About Sam Maxi

Hi, this is Sam Maxi. I love talking about woodwork tools and my reviews are mostly based on the experience I have from my work. Apart from reviewing, I am a huge fan of surfing. Also, I love watching horror genre movies.

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