How To Mill A Log: Everything You Should Know

As an Amazon Associate, I Earn From Qualifying Purchases.

Getting great furniture or wooden pieces for yourself feels amazing. But if you want to have a long-lasting and beautifully finished wooden piece for your home, office, or business, you need to find the perfect wood for that. Wood logs just don’t turn into great furniture suddenly. The most important thing here is the sawyer’s wisdom. Besides, having a good carpenter tool belt helps to keep your tools arranged and get the desired result. A great sawyer just needs the perfect log to the mill so that he can make his desired artwork. All they need is the perfect sawmill to mill a log properly. Larger scale sawmills can modify a pin-straight log. But if not used properly these pieces can still turn into unique pieces of wood and boards to be perfectly used in the carpentry market.

So, if you are getting tempted to know about how to mill logwood, there are certain steps mentioned below that you need to follow:

Removing Flair from The Log:

Making the outside of the log smooth is important to work perfectly. For that, you first need to take out the flairs of the log. Flair is a warped section of a ground log. This part makes the log really hard to rumble in the sawmill in an even line. (Flairs) makes this log stay in one position which is not okay to deal with. So, you need a chainsaw to chop the log and remove the flairs from it before loading it into your lumber mill. Just cut off the sides that you don’t want to lose for any good segment. Place the log above the sawmill after trimming it. If it’s not fitting there properly, it will need more carving to be kept in an even line.

Level Imperfect Logs:

No log is just perfect to the mill with a sawmill. But the ones which are really imperfect needs a great deal of carving along with modifying in order to work properly. You need the core of the log even across the mill while working. The log can be in a really odd shape but the milling level to the core of the tree will give you the top results and it will be the lowest warped. There are various gears to do the work such as roller toe boards, hydraulic jack or shims. You need to give more effort when the log shape is irregular, but the effort will definitely pay off.

Deal the Knots:

The trees which have more branches have the problem of knots. While you need to take care of the flairs while working with the ground log, you need to work with knots while working with the upper log. That’s why you need to set a different strategy to mill the upper logs. If you are working with a band saw, then the teeth can clasp the grain of the knot and the band blade can lift or drop. So, if you want to avoid such situations you need to feed the log over a slower rate and implement more pressure to the blade. This situation can still have a problem if knots are too many. In that case, check the trail to make sure if the blade is working properly on the band wheels and the blade guides are balanced perfectly.

Working with The Arched Logs:

The significant problem with curved or bent logs is you need to lose a significant amount of wood while you want a certain shape. So, try not to level it up while milling. Instead of cutting off the log and wasting it mostly, you can just leave a live verge and straight cut it. There are various types of wooden pieces that can be made out of these uniquely curved logs. You can just use them properly or sell them to the woodworkers who can work with them. These logs can be used to make signs, unique table surfaces, and many more. But if you can’t at all use or sell it the way it already is, trim it as short as possible to eliminate the curve so that you can get a straight board from it.

Cut Cookies:

Some logs are really difficult to work with while milling them as they are really odd-shaped. In that case, just cut them into very interesting and unique cookies. These pieces can be used to make decorative pieces. So just try that instead of getting rid of the wooden piece totally.

Milling Branches:

Usually, branches are not the ideal thing to mill or used to create a wooden piece. Instead of being used properly, they can create several issues. They are ideal for kindling or making fertilizer out of them applying a chipper. But if you get large branches you can definitely attempt to mill and turn them into lumber to make as much money as possible. While working with branches you need to test first if it’s reasonably even and large to set on a sawmill. There is “tension wood” on the top of a branch the makes it difficult to hold right. So, start milling the branch into boards to relieve the pressure. But if the board starts to warp or condescend too much while you are milling it, you should get rid of it.

Using Odd Logs to Create A Unique Product:

Wooden product trends have been changing from time to time. It has also shown us how much unique pieces can be made out of woods that can amaze us by the beauty and variety of nature. It’s the creativity of a sawyer that makes the product different. Avoiding odd and unusual logs can make you miss the chance of having a really different product. Some unique products have come from the log which other sawyers avoided saying waste wood. Shelving units, Flooring tables, Bookcases or shelves and many more can have unique appearance while made out of a unique wood log piece. Just an extra bit of effort, thought, energy and time can turn into a beautifully finished product. So instead of throwing out ‘waste’ wood, try to mill it properly and thoughtfully.


Milling the logs into lumber is not an easy job to do. It also just changes the value of the simple wood piece immensely in a very good way. So, follow the rules to finish a complex material to come out as a beautifully finished straight product.

Related Post:

Leave a Comment