Resawing long beams

I have some salvaged 12" x 4" (11.5" x 3.5") heart pine beams in lengths ranging from 16' to 25' that I want to resaw into usable cabinet lumber. Is it feasible to resaw the entire length of these beams, or will I have to cut them into shorter pieces? Given that I want to keep waste to an absolute minimum, what type of saw should I look for? Is it reasonable to expect to get three 4/4 boards from each 3.5" thick beam?
TIA Brian
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

SFWIW, sticker & stack these beams until you actually have a project, then cut only what you need.
IMHO, yes you will have to cut into shorter lengths.
IMHO, no you will not get 3, 4/4 slabs from a 3-1/2" thickness.
Take your time and have fun.
Just my $0.02.
HTH
Lew
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wrote:

Yep, sure does depend on your use objective. It's one of those corollaries to Murphy that says as soon as the last 5/4 board comes off the bunks, someone will call looking for 8.
If you just want 4/4, as the man says, find a band mill operator. If they're fairly straight, you may indeed get three from each. Then the wife will find a project demanding 4x4, not 4/4.
To do 'em yourself, you're talking 2 HP territory. Well-aged and still resinous wood will be a challenge. Of course you will then find it much easier to rough to approximate length to resaw.
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Five years or so ago some friends found a warehouse being demolished and salvaged lots of heart pine beams. They resawed them using a band saw type portable sawmill. Maybe you can find someone who has one in your area that will resaw them for you as necessary.
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Yes. And insist that the setup be checked to help keep the thickness right. It would be a lot better to cut them in half ot thirds. It's easier to hold them straight and easier to store the boards if shorter, but keep the final use in mind. If you can find a cooperative mill owner, you may be able to have him sharpen a blade with minimal set for you. These will cut easily. You are only making three cuts, so with care you should get three boards. But do you really need 4/4? If the saw is well set up, you may well get four 3/4 boards. You can certainly get three 3/4 and one almost 3/4. You can probably figure out many ways to use thinner stock and get more apperaance wood out of your stash. I'd also ask the lumber mills about resawing. They may have a rig with a thinner blade. Let us know what happens,
Wilson

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Wilson Lamb wrote:

of the beams. It may be a good reason to invest in a good bandsaw just for that purpose.
Brian
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It was somewhere outside Barstow when " snipped-for-privacy@aol.com"

For cabinetry then you can shorten them first, which makes transport easier.
Most people with a Wood-mizer could handle 16' and a few can do 25'. It depends why they have it - are they a small sawmill, or are they timber framers ?
--
Smert' spamionam

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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Is it reasonable to expect to get three 4/4 boards from each

Brian, a few years ago the mill I managed helped machine appox 100,000 bf of recycled "warehouse beams" sized from 3" x 6" up to 12" x 20". The woods varied - North eastern White pine ,some maple , alot of white and red oak ,a little hickory but most was southern yellow pine The owner had most sawn by other people but we gave the customer (owner of beams) D4S stock , moldings and flooring made from the material we received.
Most of the stock was re-sawn on a woodmiser type band saws before it was delivered to us for machining. We did resaw some ourselves but the resaw we use has a 5/32 kerf so we recommended that he find woodmiser type mills with a smaller kerf for a better yield.
There was a big difference on quality depending on who ( which mill ) did the re-sawing before we got the material. Some was perfectly flat and of equal thicknesses others were all over the place thickness wise even on the same board. Try to get referals on local sawyers before having it worked up for you. With a sharp new blade you should get 3 pcs 4/4 out of the 3-1/2" thickness --since the blades take out appox 1/8" kerf
1st thing to do is check the beams out with a metal dector . Buried metal will sherd a new bandsaw blade and you'll pay for them. Since you probally won't need 24' pcs I'll be a better idea to cut them down in length. You may also want to think about ripping some of them into 4/4 x 3-1/2" boards if your using them for cabinet work , glue-ups ,casings/moldings as usually that will give you nice tight straight grained "quatersawn" type of material. We did that to appox 30,000 bf that was made into T & G flooring and about 10,000 bf more that was made into casing and various other moldings. Some of the material we machined had 60 growth rings per inch,after quatersawing --it was beautiful stock once nail holes were gone. If you need any other info on this feel free to drop me a email and I'll try to answer any other ?s you have Jim
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Thanks for the information and advice. I probably will rip some of the boards for material to make rails/stiles for doors.
Brian
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Thanks for the information and advice. I probably will rip some of the boards for material to make rails/stiles for doors.
Brian
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