Re-Sawing Reclaimed Heart Pine

      Thoughts on dealing with dirt, nails, and pitch when turning old Heart Pine timbers into nice lumber. July 28, 2006

I have salvaged several thousand BF of what I believe is long leaf heart pine in 3 x 6 and 2 x 10 lumber from an old corn crib. After using a metal detector on it to remove all metal I can detect, what are your recommendations for a band saw blade to re-saw this lumber with? I am working with a Tanniwitz 5 hp direct drive band saw with a capacity up to 1" bands. Most likely the 2 x 10's will be ripped to 2 x 5 or smaller before re-sawing.

Forum Responses
(Sawing and Drying Forum)
From contributor D:
All my experience in resawing heart pine is with sawmill type bandsaws, but here is what little I've learned from sawing a lot of heart pine reclaimed flooring. Not sure what kind of blades you're going to use, but in 1 inch width, 3/4 7/8ths pitch should work okay. Make sure that you have plenty of set. You want the least possible amount of friction in the cut.

You will need some sort of solvent/lubricant in the cut to keep the pitch off the blade. I use a kerosene drip, two or three drops every couple seconds. You don't want to flood it, just keep the pitch off. Some people use water and dish soap mixture, but I find this to be totally useless, plus it tends to wash the lube out of bearings.

When you are sure you have all the tramp metal out, go back over them at least twice more. Be prepared to wreck some blades, even then. I can resharpen my own blades, but it's still no fun. A good compressor and blow gun will help. Those old beams have a lot of dust and dirt settled on and in them. All you can get out helps.

Resawing reclaimed beams takes a lot of effort, but in my opinion, it's certainly worth it. This is not the gospel on resawing reclaimed beams, just things that I have learned and found to work in sawing untold thousands of ft. of heart pine.

From the original questioner:
Thanks for your input. I hadn't thought about pitch buildup. Unfortunately I am sawing with a common woodshop bandsaw and can't use a lubricant. I will experiment with some cutting first and if it looks like it will be a problem, I will pay my sawyer to resaw for me and pay for his blade sharpening.

Any experience with special grades of blades, i.e. carbide tip or bimetal, etc. that offer an advantage with these lumber conditions to limit blade defecting when hitting metal?

I couldn't be more excited to get this material ready for my dream house! I have a lot of reclaimed wood to work with and it's time to make something for us for a change, instead of the customers.

From contributor L:
When I saw southern yellow pine in my woodshop, I try to remember to spray my blades with Pam non-sticking cooking spray prior to cutting. It helps.

From contributor D:
Carbide will almost always shatter when hitting a nail. We used some Lennox Woodmaster bs one time. I think they were bimetal, but anything that cuts wood well isn't going to do well with metal, and vice versa. For lube, you might try some long strips of felt accordioned into pads on the offside of your saw, i.e. the side with the blade going up. We used those on the big resaws we used at one mill I worked at.

From the original questioner:
Contributor D, there is actually a device on my saw that I believe I can attach felt to. Would you impregnate the felt with a lubricant for the purposes of keeping pitch off?

Contributor L, great idea! But will the oil react with the rubber tires on the saw? I could see soaking the felt pads mentioned above with it if it causes no problems. Thanks for all the ideas and advice.

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?
  • KnowledgeBase: Knowledge Base

  • KnowledgeBase: Primary Processing

  • KnowledgeBase: Primary Processing: Sawmilling

    Would you like to add information to this article? ... Click Here

    If you have a question regarding a Knowledge Base article, your best chance at uncovering an answer is to search the entire Knowledge Base for related articles or to post your question at the appropriate WOODWEB Forum. Before posting your message, be sure to
    review our Forum Guidelines.

    Questions entered in the Knowledge Base Article comment form will not generate responses! A list of WOODWEB Forums can be found at WOODWEB's Site Map.

    When you post your question at the Forum, be sure to include references to the Knowledge Base article that inspired your question. The more information you provide with your question, the better your chances are of receiving responses.

    Return to beginning of article.

    Refer a Friend || Read This Important Information || Site Map || Privacy Policy || Site User Agreement

    Letters, questions or comments? E-Mail us and let us know what you think. Be sure to review our Frequently Asked Questions page.

    Contact us to discuss advertising or to report problems with this site.

    To report a problem, send an e-mail to our Webmaster

    Copyright © 1996-2019 - WOODWEB ® Inc.
    All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any manner without permission of the Editor.
    Review WOODWEB's Copyright Policy.

    The editors, writers, and staff at WOODWEB try to promote safe practices. What is safe for one woodworker under certain conditions may not be safe for others in different circumstances. Readers should undertake the use of materials and methods discussed at WOODWEB after considerate evaluation, and at their own risk.

    WOODWEB, Inc.
    335 Bedell Road
    Montrose, PA 18801

    Contact WOODWEB

  • WOODWEB - the leading resource for professional woodworkers

      Home » Knowledge Base » Knowledge Base Article