Category 6: Exterior Projects


  Sawyer: Phil Ritchey
Location: Floral City, FL
Equipment: LT40

Project Dimensions: 32’ X 40’
95% of lumber cut on the mill: 7,500 BF
Estimated Savings:
Thousands of dollars
Wood Species Used: 
white & red cypress, pecky cypress, red cedar

GRAND CHAMPION - Lakeside Post-and-Beam Gazebo

Phil had owned his sawmill for more than 15 years, and for the first time, he spent the time to use his sawmill not just to cut lumber, but to build a complete structure from start to finish with it. With help from friends and over a period of six months, Phil worked on building this lakeside post-and-beam gazebo, complete with a stone fireplace and an outdoor kitchen.

A sweet gum tree was cut down to make room for the gazebo, but some of the sweet gum lumber was made into the fireplace mantel. A variety of wood species were utilized throughout the building. White and red cypress provided the posts, beams, and flooring. All the cabinets and trim pieces are red cedar cut from 300 year old sinker logs pulled out of the Withlacootchee River. The
unusual looking curved wood bar is topped with pecky cypress that was filled with epoxy to form the hard, clear surface. To ensure that the sink and kitchen counters would last for years to come, they are built from concrete that was poured in place into forms, and then polished to a smooth finish.

Phil’s favorite thing about his sawmill is its portability. He remarks, “The men love the saw and lumber, and the women love the gazebo and kitchen!” When asked about how he feels now seeing the project completed, he says he feels, “Very proud. We harvested the timber, sawed it, milled it, and then built this beautiful place. This is the first time I’ve gone from standing trees to a finished project and everything in-between.”








  Sawyer: Scott Rosenthal
Location: Wisconsin Rapids, WI
Equipment: LT40 Hydraulic

Project Dimensions: 16’ X 20’
100% of lumber cut on the mill: 3,500 BF
Estimated Savings: $5,000
Wood Species Used: pine

FIRST PLACE - A Family Gathering Place

Scott Rosenthal’s structure is a bold take on the typical screen house: it boasts large beams and steel plates, and sets on raised concrete forms surrounded by a stamped concrete patio. Situated just a few yards away from a small pond, this impressive structure is a popular gathering place for family functions and outdoor get-togethers.

Scott’s goal in building the screen house was to “saw, build, and complete everything from my mill.” And over the course of a summer, with the help of others raising of the beams and installing the metal roof, he was able to see that dream realized. After the foundation was in place, the beams for the roof were constructed in place on the foundation. Once that was completed, with the help of friends and two tractors on either end, the roof was raised, and the corner beams were installed underneath. The T&G pine used for the ceiling, soffit, and interior walls all went through the sawmill, as did all the large pine beams.

The screen house is complete with electricity, a large ceiling fan, and a stamped concrete patio around the perimeter that has an appearance of wood beams. Scott says about his project that he is “Very proud of the work I put into it and the final outcome.”




Sawyer: David Weyler
Location: Bedford, KY
Equipment: LT28

100% of lumber cut on the mill: 1,000 BF
Estimated Savings: $20,000
Wood Species Used: cedar, oak, hickory
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HONORABLE MENTION - Relax and Stay a While

Nestled in the wooded hills of Kentucky and just a stone’s throw from rows of
grapevines, David Weyler’s wine bar pavilion invites people to come and stay a while and enjoy the beauty of the surroundings thanks to the open design of the cedar timberframe.

David is in the process of starting his own winery, and after three months of work, he was able to add to that goal with the pavilion, thanks to the help of
friends who pitched in to fell trees, help mill, and build. He says, “People are coming from all over…They love it!” The rock fireplace has a built-in firewood stacking area and a grill, and also doubles as a retaining wall. Large flagstones give the floor an extra special look, and the bar is built from 80 board feet of hickory.

“The Wood-Mizer purchase was hands down the best investment we made in our farm. It has returned the original investment over six times in six years and this is without doing any commercial sawing. We have rebuilt several barns, two houses, a garage, fences, and recently the wine pavilion. Next year will be it's greatest return when we build the 6,000 square foot winery. It has enabled us to improve the value of our assets as well as create a profitable business off our land without doing traditional farming.”

Weyler Photos