Discusses business-plan development; determining rates; writing contracts; marketing; product and service diversification; safety issues; insurance and liability; financial analysis; purchasing and operating a sawmill; grading lumber; sorting and stacking wood; specialty cuts; equipment maintenance; and more.
If you like working outdoors and are thinking of starting your own business, a new book, Developing a Custom Portable Sawmill Enterprise, NRAES–134 ($12.00 plus S&H/sales tax; 36 pages; March 2007), can help you make an informed decision about your future. Today, portable custom sawmill businesses are flourishing, in part because technological advances by equipment manufacturers—over 70 of them now operating—have made it possible for a one- or two-person operation to produce high-quality lumber economically. Another obvious plus is that the demand for these services is growing.
Developing a Custom Portable Sawmill Enterprise, NRAES–134, reviews key considerations for those investigating options to develop a portable sawmill enterprise. It provides an overview of what is involved in lumber production and touches on all aspects of starting your own business, including determining rates; writing contracts; identifying a niche; marketing; product and service diversification; safety issues; insurance and liability; and financial analysis. For those who know little about wood or what is involved in becoming a sawyer, this guide can serve as a primer through inclusion of such topics as grading lumber; types of sawing; sorting and stacking; equipment maintenance; dimension lumber vs. specialty cuts; and much more. It also provides a wealth of resources to help you find in-depth answers to your specific questions.
This 36-page guide begins by explaining how to develop a business plan—a must for those who have never operated their own business. One important aspect is deciding whether your enterprise will be a sole proprietorship, a partnership, a corporation, or a limited liability company. The next consideration is selecting and purchasing a mill. Will it be a bandsaw or a circular saw mill? Will it be a lower-end model requiring more manual labor, or a high-end, more automated model? New or used? With so many choices available in today’s marketplace, selecting the right model may require some research. Contact information for 27 sawmill manufacturers was included to help with this effort.
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