As the name "sawmill" given to Black Forest saw plants implies, they are powered by a waterwheel and hence the technical principle underlying their driving mechanism is the same as in grain mills. Hence the name. "Sawmills as outbuildings were and are only found on farm estates with very large woodland areas. The oldest sawmills in the Black Forest are "drop sawmills" also referred to as "knock and drop sawmills". They have all disappeared in Europe except for three in the Black Forest, one of which is in the Open Air Museum in Gutach. In these drop sawmills, the frame carrying the saw blade is knocked upwards by cams as the shaft turns. These cams are let into the shaft on which the waterwheel sits. When the frame carrying the saw blade is in the topmost position it drops by its own weight, making a loud knocking noise, and in so doing it cuts the trunk. From 1800 onwards, drop sawmills were replaced by sawmills with crank drives, referred to in the Black Forest as "crank saws"
Since a sawmill is not included in any of the itemisations of buildings in earlier contracts relating to the title of the farm, it is unlikely that a "drop sawmill" was ever part of the "Ebenemoos" estate, despite its very large woodland area. In earlier times the timber was presumably transported on a horse-drawn cart to a nearby sawmill. The farmer Martin, whose technical foible was reported on earlier, was the first farmer to build a sawmill on the "Ebenemoos" estate. It can be assumed that shortly after he took over the farm in 1814 he built a state-of-the-art "crank saw" made entirely from wood. The sawmill was erected about 75 meters below the grain mill already mentioned.
This location was dictated not only by the lie of the land there - a valley plain. Particular attention had to be given that the saw mill was far enough away from the grain mill. Having done its first "stint", the water flowing down the valley was slow downstream of the waterwheel. Only after it had gained enough momentum further down its course was it able to drive a new waterwheel - the sawmill waterwheel - with sufficient power.
For more than one hundred years the mill brook drove the sawmill's waterwheel in its "second stint". Looking at the sawmill and its environment today, it is still quite easy to imagine the scene of hustle and bustle at the "Ebenenmoos" mills when the water gushed over the waterwheels, moving the grinding millstones via the wooden shafts and cogwheels, reciprocating the saw blade and drawing the long wire rope over squeaking reels to the farm.
But as new driving techniques became available, the ravages of time took their toll on this sawmill which had worked efficiently for decades. So it was that after the Second World War, the farmer Josef I. planned a new sawmill. When in May 1950 the plan drawn up by Rötenbach's architect was to hand and the District Office of Neustadt had approved his application, he built the new saw mill right next to the old one, which was left standing there for some time. A small photo, taken at the beginning of the fifties, suggests that the old sawmill might not have been in full working order for several years.
The old sawmill with new building
The new saw, powered by diesel from the day it was built, provides sufficient space and capacity to saw the timber to market requirements. The sawn timber is stored on the adjoining storage area until it is sold and transported:
The saw yard on "Ebenemoos"