Advice for Ripping Large Logs

How the pros make longitudinal cuts in the field, in order to expedite getting their harvest to the mill. January 25, 2005

How do you rip your logs? Do you stand on top and freehand cut or do you cut horizontal with guides?

Forum Responses
(Sawing and Drying Forum)
From contributor S:
My cousin and I use a Beam Machine - a guide that clamps to the bar and follows a 2x4. We've tried cutting on the sides, thinking we could make two cuts for each roll, but it required a lot more muscle than cutting on top.

We intend to eventually get a Logosol "Big Log" jig that utilizes a boat winch to pull the saw through the cut.

From the original questioner:
Is there something clamped on both ends of the bar, or the tip end only? Do you screw the 2x4 on the log and then roll it over? I have to figure out how I am going to quarter my 48" oak log.

From contributor C:
Look at a Bailey's catalog - they have them.

From contributor K:
You don't have to rip the log with a Lucas or Peterson :)

From contributor S:
Just one of the 28" wide slabs of walnut in my shed is worth a little ripping every now and then to get a big log down to size.

From contributor B:
Sometimes you do have to rip the log, even when you have a Lucas or Peterson. Sometimes the log is too darn heavy to get on the truck!

Big madrone photo by Bob Smalser:

From contributor K:
I don't move mine. This mill is made for setup around the log. This one is a 54" water oak.

Photo by Kyle Edwards:

Click here for full size image

From contributor B:
Yup, your oak is a pretty big log. But the madrone was on a construction site, and the mission was to get it out of there that day, not add 5 yards of sawdust to the site.

The good thing justifying losing some BF to a rip was that the entire tree was a freebee for hauling it off.

From contributor K:
I get a lot of those "get it out of here today" stories until they have to pay someone $1000 to cut it up and haul it off. Then, amazingly, the time schedule slips out. I look at it like this: yeah, it's a nice tree, but I am spending 8-10 hours of time and gas hauling the log.

From contributor T:
Red oak. 70" in diameter.

Click here for full size image

From contributor J:
Gosh, those pictures make my 30" hickory look small, but this is how I rip them to take to the mill or move them to the house.

Click here for full size image