cutting 6 x 6 beams with miter saw ???

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On Sun, 8 May 2011 18:15:24 -0700 (PDT), DerbyDad03

I watched some Amish guys build a pole barn. Of course no electricity. They used a gasoline chainsaw to build the entire barn. They even knotched the tops of the posts with it, and the cuts were nearly perfect. But they do it all the time, so practice makes perfect. I normally use a small electric chainsaw for stuff like that. They do sell 12 inch long blades for Sawsalls, they have a standard wood tooth or tree trimming coarse tooth. Those tree trimmer ones cut fast, but I've never gotten a real straight cut becuase the blades bend and flex. But for trimming the tops off posts, they dont need to be perfect.
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No. The saw's motor is approximately 6" in diameter, and limits the depth of cut to about 4.5" on a typical 12" circular miter saw.
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On 5/9/2011 11:20 AM, snipped-for-privacy@rochester.rr.com wrote:

Unless you have a saw that has a belt driven motor that is high mounted, or a angled motor (such as the Makita slide-miter saws). Only the cheapest of the cheap use a straight attached motor.
--
I'm never going to grow up.

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I have an older Delta 12" Miter saw. I just walked out and looked at it, with tape measure in hand. My answer is no, not in one pass.
There is enough clearance between the bed and blade for a 5-1/2' to 6" piece of stock to clear. BUT, from the outer radius of the blade, to the motor/blade housing only measures about 4-7/8" so you are going to come up about 5/8" short on depth.
How perfect of a cut do you need? I often cut 2x10's on my saw, which is beyond the cutting range but a little care lets me switch sides and line the blade up visually. You should be able to do the same thing and finish the cut from the opposite side after resetting the blade to the other side.
RonB
RonB
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If I had a large number of them to do I would lay out all the cut lines on them a lay them side by side then cut as many as I could in one pass with a circular saw then flip and cut the other side. Will probably take a 12 in saw to do it in two passes without having to finish with a hand saw .....dont think they are terribly expensive to rent.
Jimmie
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The idea is to not hump more than you have to - that way you'll last longer. The saw is far lighter and easier to move than a 6x6. The routine is to mark the length on the 6x6 then cut with the saw in your right hand and a speed square as a fence in your left...if you're using a circular saw. If you're using a chainsaw, you really can't/ shouldn't line them up side by side anyway.

The OP seems to be either afraid of chainsaws or doesn't believe the people that are telling him that a sharp chain on a chainsaw will provide a perfectly suitable cut on the only one (maybe two) face(s) that will matter. If he does go with a circular saw he definitely would want a worm drive saw, and he should buy the saw and sell it when he's done. There are 6x6s and 6x6s. If he's going with a dressed 6x6 (5.5" actual), than an 8" saw is all the OP would need. http://www.skiltools.com/en/AllTools/Category/Product/default.html?pid=HD5860
R
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I have taken all comments to heart, and plan to cut the beams with a 12 inch miter saw, and cut in more than one pass. Several responders said that would make a smooth cut if care is taken in the process.
NEW QUESTION !! :
While I used 12 inch spiral nails on a similar project about ten years ago, my carpenter-helper has suggested that I consider using Spax Lag Screws, of the proper material for use with PT lumber. I suppose that I would use 10 inch screws, either with a torx or hex head. I am old fashioned (and old), and I just can't quite see how a screw could provide as much stability as a 3/8 inch spike nail, or a spiral nail. My carpenter assures me that it can. It would also seem to me to very hard to install these, but the Spax website claims one version of the lag screw doesn't even require pre-drilling !! I just can't envision how this 10 inch screw could be drilled in straight, and not go off on a bad angle or something...
Any thoughts/ ideas, or (most importantly) experience using these Spax products ???
Thanks for any tips on this !!
James
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James wrote the following:

Take a square and make a cut line around all 4 sides of the beam. You may find that the last drawn line doesn't meet up exactly with the first line you drew. Unless you intend to have this beam stand vertically on end on a perfectly level surface, that doesn't really matter much. You're building primitive steps on a slope in a mountainous area, you are not building furniture! Who the f**k is going to look at the ends? Anyone that does mention the unevenness of the ends should be eliminated from future guest lists. Just sayin'.

--

Bill
In Hamptonburgh, NY
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The OP should reread this thread and ask himself why he ignored the advice about the screws (and info on driving them) until his 'carpenter-helper' suggested them.
Later, after his 'carpenter-helper' points out that cutting landscape tie joinery is dumb, maybe he'll check back here and ask about that. I'm guessing that after he's humped a few of those ties up onto the miter saw, and then tried to rotate them and move them accurately, he'll see the light. Maybe.
These sort of scenarios are always entertaining. Someone posts a "question" and then ignores all of the advice. They're not really asking for advice, they're asking for validation. Unfortunately I'm really bad at validating dumb ideas. Maybe Stuart Smalley could help.
R
R
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It will go straight. Use a couple where you would have used a single large spike.
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On Tue, 24 May 2011 04:40:21 -0700 (PDT), jamesgangnc

You better have one hell of a powerful drill too, and be prepared to pay about $3 or more per screw. Dont even think about using a battery powered drill.
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On May 24, 9:16am, snipped-for-privacy@myplace.com wrote:

It's not really hard to drive them as they are pretty thin. For the volume it sounds like he has, a corded drill would be better. They are expensive. They are a labor saving solution. Fits the commercial side a bit better where labor is your biggest cost. They are fast. Pop a couple in in less than 30 seconds. No predrilling. For harry homeowner labor is free so that might factor differently in the decision.
Labor saving doesn't seem to be an issue for him though as he plans to use a miter saw to cut the 6x6s. MYself I'd mark and cut a bunch with a chain saw as they were coming off the truck and going down the hill. Then zip them together with screws and move on.
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When reading his posts the phrase "polishing a turd" comes to mind.
Harry K
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Yea
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replying to James, Dan wrote: If you must have a 1-pass cut on a 6x6 or larger post or beam, then I would suggest you invest in a bandsaw. These will cut much deeper than 6x6, produce a very fine cut or notch w/no overcut & can also be used for re-sawing old lumber & many other projects. Alternatively, you can purchase a Prazi Beam Cutter attachment for a circular or wormdrive saw (I would recommend the wormdrive for more power on large beams). The Prazi will cut up to 12" in 1 pass. There is also a 16" circular saw from Makita that is used in the Timber Framing Industry.
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