I have salvaged about 650 linear feet of old beams that I would like to sand and prep and post on my new homes walls. I am going for an effect similar to this: http://pinterest.com/pin/353321533236150872/
These boards have been attic beams for over 100 years. They are approximately 8 inches tall by two inches wide and are nice and dry on the inside while old and dark on the outside. Their lengths vary from 5ft to 11ft.
I would like to cut them all down to 1 inch thickness and then sand them down. I am a NEWBIE and don't really know how to do this. I can call around mills but I know it will cost me a decent penny so while I have some vacation time, I don't mind going at it.
What do I need to buy in order to do this? 1) Cut in half (from 2 inches to 1 inch thick) 2) sand them down 3) "preserve them" other then polyurethane?
Thanks for any and all advice. If there are particular machines I will need to buy please make suggestions.