HOW THE BUSINESS STARTED
Today, we have Dan Pottage of Pottage Sawmill. Dan started out as a landscaper but being based in Southern Alberta, Canada he quickly grew tired of working in the cold. Instead, he took classes and started working in tree removal. This quickly led him down the path to the sawmill life! Starting with the Granberg mill, he began milling and drying slabs in less than a month’s time. Starting with the Granberg Mill on a Stihl Magnum 880, he then went on and bought a de-humidification kiln so that he could start drying slabs in less than a month’s time.
WHY A GRANBERG CHAINSAW MILL?
Initially, cost was a large factor in Dan’s purchase of a Granberg Mill. Knowing that for under $3,000 he could have the chainsaw, the chains, the mill, and actually get started right away cutting slabs, it was a no-brainer. Currently, he’s still milling in order to keep selling the slabs but hopes to start creating products soon.
USING THE KILN
Knowing that it can take two to three years to air dry the wood without a kiln, Dan invested in one immediately after purchasing a mill. Dan likens having a kiln to brewing beer over distilling whiskey, you can either create something that will be ready to sell in time, or you can speed the process along and start making profits. With a 25 day turn around as opposed to 2 years, Pottage says it’s crazy not to use a kiln.
Hating the idea of using social media, Dan’s wife convinced him that it was a smart business move. She was right and between Instagram, Facebook, and Craigslist he’s selling his slabs. Also, through Instagram Dan was able to network with the sawmill business after he started following @blaiseintrees, a fellow Granberg Chainsaw Mill user. This opened up more opportunities for sales and business growth.
To continue staying busy enough that he can stay out of the cold in the winter!
Also recently, he’s started working with new materials and creating amazing pieces. He also follows Black Forest Company on Instagram and hopes to collaborate with them in the future. He loves the types of items that they post and hopes to be able to do the same soon.
Facebook: Pottage Sawmill