| September/October 1978

5408 Genessee Street, Lancaster, New York 14086

In the March-April 1978 of GEM, J. M. Huckabee asked 'How does a shingle mill work?' I hope this short article may help him, and others who often wonder the same question.

Before I go into the details of these mills, it should be remembered that just like gas engines and tractors, no two companies build shingle mills the same. Each company came up with their own novel ideas which were supposed to be better than their competition. The exception to this rule is the Chase Turbine Mfg. Company, and the Lane Mfg. Company whose shingle mills were about identical.

There are chiefly two different types of shingle mills, the 'Vertical' and the 'horizontal.' This refers to the position of the blade. Often the 'horizontals' are also called 'merry-go-round' shingle mills. The mills made by Chase Turbine Mfg. Company, American Sawmill Machinery Company and DeLoach are good examples of this kind. Good examples of the 'vertical' kind are the ones made by the Lyon iron Works known as the 'Ireland', Chase Turbine Mfg. Company, Lane Mfg. Company, and the Trevor Company.

The blocks of wood (bolts) to be sawn were held as a carriage which fed them into the saw. The saw always cut with the grain, of course, but the blocks were either held sideways and cut through the length, or the block was held endways and the saw cut through the ends from one to the other.

The carriages were either fed into the saw by hand, by the use of a rock and pinion, or a crank or bull gear and a connecting rod. I believe the type using the crank and connecting rod was the most common. A good example of this type of feed is found on the Ireland mill built by the Lyon Iron Works. All shingle mills except the hand feed, used simple friction clutches to engage and disengage the carriage feed.

Dan Pett
9/11/2009 10:34:24 AM

I have a horizontal shingle mill. It was manufactured in 1982. I would like more info about it, especially its value. I can get some other info off of it if needed.