Sawmill Schwarzwaldalp

Old Sawmill Schwarzwaldalp

We assume that the first sawmill on the Schwarzwaldalp has already been operated at the present location since 1800.

On March 17th 1900 Ulrich Thöni bought an area for the building of the Kurhaus Schwarzwald-Alp from the Alp Cooperative Breitenboden; that building was erected between 1902 and 1904. For the processing of the building timber the sawmill was rearranged until it reached its present size. Till the fire in the hotel in 1943 it was used regularly for the processing of wood.

It gained an important part again when an auxiliary building of the former hotel was rebuilt by Ernst Thöni to become the present Hotel-Chalet. With respect to  this building project the sawmill was equipped with a planing machine in 1947; thanks to a new transmission the planing machine can be driven by the water wheel.

In the following years the sawmill was used less and less frequently. That situation resulted in downtime damages and repair works again and again.

In 1997, the foundation “Pro Säge Schwarzwaldalp“ was founded with the aim to maintain the sawmill on the Schwarzwaldalp for posterity as a witness of the technical development in the 20th century.

Thanks to the foundation the sawmill can be overhauled again. Since the summer of 2000 it has been operated regularly for saw shows.

Technical data of the single framesaw Schwarzwaldalp:
- Wheel diameter 3.4 m
- Number of blades 30 pcs.
- Width of wheel 1.04 m
- Revolutions per minute during sawing operations approx. 18 to 20, maximum 22
- Process control by a card system existing for more than 100 years (speed and feed)
- Planing machine (the only one with water drive in Switzerland)


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