Collector Bill Waters uses his restored Frick Sawmill in logging demonstrations
When assembled, this 70-year-old Frick sawmill stretches 45 feet with a 15-foot carriage, and weighs 3,500 pounds. Before the advent of the flatbed truck, it took a four-man crew to dissemble the mill and load it onto a horse-drawn wagon.
The sawmill's number one head block. The top part is the 'dog,' which is supported by the 'dog rack' and operated by the handle on the right. The dog holds the log in place. Across the bottom of the ell is a ruler, measuring in inches, with a hand-operated pointer adjusted to measure the width of the boards.
Bill Waters takes a break from setting up his sawmill at the Agricultural History Farm Park, Derwood, Md.
Feed and return belts power the carriage. The hand-operated three-position lever to the right of the blade controls the movement of the carriage, which is rub by cables.
Willing hands use cant hooks to roll an oak log onto the carriage for sawing.
Bill Waters operates the control lever while Mike Bailey is the off-bearer in cutting new boards from a poplar log.
Sawmills are traditionally powered by steam engines, but tractors may also be used, as shown here with this 1950s-vintage John Deere R. Mike Bailey of Olney talks with tractor operator John Stubbs III of Gaithersburg as they prepare to power up the sawmill. The seven-inch belt is 80 feet long.