Supervisors and foremen of saw mills almost certainly must be aware of the difficulty involved with keeping the saws on their cutting machines working correctly and efficiently. Saw blades are an absolute pain to keep in tip-top working order — cutting a straight and smooth line across your lumber is almost impossible if the machines are let go and not properly maintained. However, using a few key tips, it is surprisingly easy to stay ahead of your saw blade issues and ensure they operate as efficient as they possibly can.
It’s almost always the collar
This point cannot be stressed enough. Even an amateur to the saw mill world can understand that if a saw blade isn’t held correctly, it isn’t going to get any meaningful work done. Experienced mill operators know how important regular collar check-ups are – they often can save you maintenance headaches later and a fortune on replacement blades.
Lead is a blade’s best friend
Lead is applied to saw blades to ensure that they do not saw out of a log during the slabbing process. Lead application can also help provide clearance at the back of a saw so that the teeth do not knock around on the return. Improper lead amounts can cause your saw blade to saw out too often (not enough lead) or begin to saw into the log (too much lead). Getting the lead/blade ratio correct and double checking it, yourself, can help keep the saw blades cutting nice and straight through the logs.
Keep the saw’s teeth sharpened
This tip would seem, at first, to be a no-brainer, but saw sharpening is often overlooking in favor of other maintenance activities. This last tip works to remind saw mill workers to take their time when sharpening these blades. Doing it right often saves sharpening time later that could otherwise be used on different (more pressing) mill duties.
Follow these useful tips and your cutting blade will be much more happy (at least in the short-term).