Bandmill Blade Tension
Got a debarker? If so, change after about 750 board feet.
What to watch for depends to some degree on your mill's power plant. If you have one of the big diesel mill 53 CAT, 42 Kubota, you won't notice the mill react to a dulling band, you have to watch the cut. If it cuts smooth and straight (especially at knots and hard spots, and especially in wide cuts), then it's still sharp enough to do the job. But even with good results, don't push the band too far - the micro cracks in the gullet will cause even a perfectly sharp blade to bust if pushed past its limits.
From contributor A:
I saw around 900 tons a year of SYP and it is cut with WM 10 degree 0.045 blades. We have cut some with the new 1 1/8 spaced blades on the LT70 with 10 degree 0.055. Most of the time we average over 1 mbdft per blade change. I have sawn over 2 mbdft before the blade will break. The 13 degree blades really fly through pretty clear logs but jump really bad knots. The 10 degrees do better overall, but you still need to slow down on large knots. On the LT40HDG25, I run 2,200 on the gauge.
From contributor R:
What do you use as a lubricant when cutting SYP? I have seen guys use Pine-sol or diesel. Which one works best to keep the blade free of pitch?
From contributor W:
Wood-Mizer recommends that you change the .055 thick blades every two hours of sawing. The issue isn't getting the blade dull, but the micro-cracks contributor A was talking about, which are caused by the band revolving around the wheels.
If you can find it, Cotton Gin spindle cleaner works pretty well. I mix about 8 ounces/5 gallons of water when cutting resinous woods...
Would you like to add information to this article?
Interested in writing or submitting an article?
Have a question about this article?
Have you reviewed the related Knowledge Base areas below?