What you Need to Know about Hiring a

What you Need to Know about Hiring a
Wood-Mizer Sawmill Service to Saw your Logs
Chances are, you may have trees that were knocked down in a storm, or a dying tree in your front yard
that your father built a treehouse in many many years ago. Or perhaps you would really like to get a
fence, deck, or barn built, and would like to save some money by using your own backyard forest to
supply the lumber.
Wood-Mizer sawmill owners can provide this service for you, no matter where you live in North
America. Many of our customers have been serving their communities by sawing local lumber for many
years. By hiring one of them, you not only are keeping your money in the local economy, but you also
will end up with a product that no lumberyard or box store can offer: Your own lumber, cut to your
specifications, for whatever project you have in mind.
Take advantage of Wood-Mizer’s large customer base and use our “Find a Local Sawyer” request form to
get in contact with your local sawmill businesses. Wood-Mizer tries to recommend only the best of the
best, and we encourage you to give us feedback on your experiences with our customers.
What you need to know:
Sawing logs into lumber is one of those sciences that could be described as, “Takes an hour to learn, a
lifetime to master.” Here are a few things you should know when you go to get your logs milled.
Do Some Checking
Like in any industry, there are good sawmill businesses, and then there are ones that don’t have
any business being in business! Be sure and get a couple references from the business owner,
find out how long he has been sawing, and do a little homework. Wood-Mizer sawmills cut
straight, true lumber when they are properly maintained and are using correct blades. If you
hear that he doesn’t cut straight boards, you may want to try the next Sawmill Business in the
Know a Little Lingo
Cants, flitches, kerf, quartersawn, flatsawn, dimensional lumber, grade lumber… There’s a few
terms that sawyers use that you’ll want to be familiar with. Be sure and read Wood-Mizer’s
Getting Started Guide to Sawing to learn more about how portable sawmills work and what the
various terms mean.
Find out How the Price will be Determined
o Sawmill businesses typically charge by the board, board foot, or by the hour. When
sawing more valuable lumber or when more manual labor is required, sawyers will often
charge by the hour. When sawing standard sizes and larger orders, sawyers often charge
by the board or board foot. Prices will vary greatly depending on what is being sawn and
what equipment is being utilized. Keep in mind that higher prices may reflect more
efficient production, where lower prices may reflect smaller equipment being used and
more time involved to produce the needed lumber.
A terrific service that Wood-Mizer sawmill owners can offer is portable service.
Depending on how far you are away, there will be some sort of travel fee.
Many sawyers offer a reduction in their charges if you provide a helping hand. Although
Wood-Mizer sawmills are able to be completely operated by one person, having another
set of hands to stack boards, get logs ready, and other things really helps speed up the
overall production. Be sure and supply the sawyer with someone that is not afraid of
some good old-fashioned hard work!
Metal in a log can break a blade, or at least dull it enough to prevent further use.
Sawyers usually charge a fee for hitting metal. It is primarily your responsibility to check
your logs for metal. Be aware that metal hides very easily. Yard trees are notorious for
having nails and other metal hidden deep inside the log. Using a metal detector can help
you find elusive metal in logs.
What will you do with the lumber?
o The sawyer may offer lumber drying services or you may need to find a place to sticker
and stack the lumber to dry yourself. If the sawyer has a dry kiln, he can accomplish this
much faster for you, and the lumber value will be greater than if it simply air dries.
Getting your own logs sawn up is a very exciting event. Be sure and use our “Find a Sawyer” request
form to get into contact with local sawmill businesses near you. And also be sure and provide WoodMizer with feedback on your experiences to help us improve this free service.