Quarter sawing

Basic instructions for quarter sawing, and where to find out more. February 7, 2001

Is quarter sawing accomplished by simply sawing the log into four quarters, then sawing into boards? Or am I missing something?

Forum Responses
1. First take a board from the center of the log by raising the small end of the log till the pith parallel with the blade. Cut 1/2 the width above and below the pith. Remove board.

2. Next turn the remaining two halves 1/4 turn and split again.

3. Remove all but one quarter from the mill.

4. Lay one flat side of the quarter down on the bed and, rather than sawing from the top of the cant, saw from the bottom of it.

5. Remove the flitch and roll the 1/4 to the other flat and saw another flitch.

6. Saw and roll until finished, then repeat with the other 3/4.

The Woodmizer handbook explains a modified quarter sawing method that produces quite a bit of true quartered lumber--some rift and some flat. If the log is large, the percentage of quartered is higher. Essentially the log is cut into thirds. The top and bottom are then rotated 90 degrees and cut into one edge flitches that have to be edged. The center is rotated 90 degrees and the pith is cut out. The two pieces left from this center cut are rotated once again and sliced. This method is quicker than true quartering and gives me good results.