Quartersawing thoughts and help

      Some thoughts on doing quartersawing with a circle mill versus a bandsaw mill. Also an offer of instructions. March 7, 2000

Q.
I found a sawyer willing to attempt quartersawing a log of red oak for me. He is an experienced sawyer with a circular sawmill but has never tried to quartersaw before. So far I found three different ways to quartersaw a log. Is there any one method that is superior over the others?

A.
I do only quartersawing of red and white oak, but I use a bandmill. I racked my weak mind trying to discover a way to simply (cheaply) do true quartersawing on a circle mill, and I don't think it can be done without a million dollars. What you will have is a flatsawn log that you can pull three or four boards out of, which show good raying. Then cut the heart out of those. I believe that is the best you can do.



Get someone that can turn the log, like a person with a bandmill. True QS is time consuming, but wastes little wood -- and it all comes out QS. True QS is, to answer your question, in my opinion the best, not the fastest. It's not even possible on a bandmill if the log is too large, but it is truly QS lumber when you're through.

For logs that are too big to quarter on a bandmill there are other methods that are "good," but they do not produce all "true" QS lumber; most of it is "bastard sawn," i.e., acceptable, but not "the best."



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