Reclaimed latest score.

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Blog entry by AngieO posted 08-29-2012 05:32 PM 2588 reads 0 times favorited 23 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I started my desire for working wood with some pallets that I reclaimed. They were in pretty rough shape but have still been able to make them into nice pieces. So far all the wood I’ve reclaimed has been old pallets.

Over the last week I noticed a large pile of wood behind a local manufacturing business. I only noticed it because my favorite hydroplance boat was parked back there… Miss Madison. Anyhow… I’ve been passing it every day and finally called about it yesterday. It was far enough off the road that I really couldn’t see what all was there. I had no idea if there was anything of value. I called and was put in contact with a man named Charlie. He asked me to stop by and he’d show me what he was willing to let me have and what I couldn’t take. What I was most excited about was all the wood that I found that was already dismantled. I’ve dismantled quite a few pallets before and it was very time consuming. But what I found was lots of boards that had already been taken apart. I started loading up. Then I found some old fencing. Here is what I’ve got so far. And I only scratched the surface.

All I had to do for these boards is remove some nails. Some of the boards had some staples in them that I had a hard time getting out so I just got my circular saw out and cut those parts out.

With these fence pieces I plan on reusing them to fence around my pallet stack. Behind my garage there is an area where I stack any pallets and such that I collect. I’m going to use these to enclose the area so that it is hidden from the road, neighbors and not accessible to the kids.

There is so much more where this came from. The wood in the picture is only the boards that were already dismantled. I found two very large shipping pallets all of 2×4 that had surprisingly very few nails in them. Lots of good wood even if I just cut the boards. I found some very nice pallets made of different wood. I don’t know what kind but I can tell they aren’t pine.

You can’t really tell from the pile… there is so much stuff on the sides, under, behind…. this pile is bigger than it looks. It’s very deep. It’s about two car lengths back.

This pile is this business’ “burn pile”. i don’t know how often they burn it but it is filled up quite often. I could get quite a bit of reclaimed wood from here. All I would need. I wouldn’t be able to use it up quick enough. LOL… too much wood…? Is there such a thing? i think that would be too awesome.

So… it’s time for me to get out there and start making something. What shall I work on today?

23 comments so far

View canadianchips's profile


2602 posts in 3026 days

#1 posted 08-29-2012 05:37 PM

good fnd.price is right…...FREE.
Happy Buiilding

-- "My mission in life - make everyone smile !"

View DaddyZ's profile


2475 posts in 3070 days

#2 posted 08-29-2012 06:00 PM

Nice going!!!!!!!!!!

-- Pat - Worker of Wood, Collector of Tools, Father of one

View Kookaburra's profile


748 posts in 2253 days

#3 posted 08-29-2012 06:06 PM

Welll Angie – it sounds like your fence and a good sturdy organizer for your wood is in order. You don’t want your wood pile to look like that one in a few weeks! Really, getting a good place to sort and store your wood should be first. You could do shelves, bins and upright compartments. Then you will be able to find what you need and get some inspiration from the stock. Do you get a lot of rain? Maybe a roof? Sounds like you won’t be needing to buy any wood for a while!

-- Kay - Just a girl who loves wood.

View Chris McDowell's profile

Chris McDowell

644 posts in 2182 days

#4 posted 08-29-2012 09:45 PM

Looks like you hit the jackpot! I need to keep my eye out for wood piles like this one around town.

-- Chris, , FACEBOOK: , Proverbs 16:9

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 3266 days

#5 posted 08-29-2012 10:01 PM

Great score! What are you going to make with all that wood?

-- Hal, Tennessee

View BertFlores58's profile


1698 posts in 2951 days

#6 posted 08-29-2012 11:00 PM

Hi Angie,
I started same way as you are collecting pallets. It will be a never-ending source.
The next step is to plug-in those nail holes. Use a bamboo chopstics and cover it with some glue mixed with its own sanding dust. No one will ever recognize where it came from.
Another tip: if you found the warp wood in there, just soak it with water and while wet, clamped them to a flat board (sandwiching is much better using a flat granite tiles) and let it dry whie clamp is on.
Another one… If a nail broke and the one on the board is left, then get a nail punch (or even a nail with a dull tip) and hammer the broken piece straight through the other side.
Enjoy the method of sorting out those wood..
Careful, some of the wood from recycled maybe treated with some chemicals. You might get sawdust that will give skin irritation. It happen to me one time when cutting an old 4×4. The effect comes after 4 hours when I took a bath.. It reacted with water and soap. I learnt that wood was treated with anti-termite chemicals.
Take care,

-- Bert

View MichaelT77's profile


118 posts in 2141 days

#7 posted 08-30-2012 12:32 AM

Do you really get decent wood from pallets? It’s not like they’re made of cherry or birdseye maple, right?

There has been an ad on my local craigslist for a while. A local company has a pile of pallets behind the building that are free for the taking.

After reading the comments here, I’m wondering what I might find. It might be worth the effort.

-- Michael T, Pittsburgh, PA

View  woodshaver Tony C   's profile

woodshaver Tony C

5982 posts in 3382 days

#8 posted 08-30-2012 02:29 AM

I would say that wood is wood, some is not fit for the finer pieces so it’s used to make things like pallets. But if it’s clean and dressed I don’t see why you couldn’t use it to make some nice things with it. Heck.. Free is just right when you don’t have a huge budget for the really good wood’s like cherry, maple or walnut.
I’ll even grab something off the sidewalk before the trash people get there.
Nice find Angie!!

-- St Augustine FL, Experience is the sum of our mistakes!

View AngieO's profile


1267 posts in 2176 days

#9 posted 08-30-2012 02:54 AM

Mostly it’s pine but I’ve found oak, poplar and stuff that I know isn’t pine but not sure what it is. Some of its dirty and has holes. But a little TLC and it can shine right up. You also need to remember that I’m still a beginner and I just don’t have a woodworking budget. So this wood allows me to get out there and make some sawdust. And while im learning i dont have to be too afraid to ruin a $30 piece of wood because i made a mistake. Its been great to be able to tackle something and know that if i mess up its ok… Cause the wood was free. I’ve made picture frames, boxes and jigs with the free wood. But do a search on here and you will see some really awesome projects made from reclaimed wood.

View BertFlores58's profile


1698 posts in 2951 days

#10 posted 08-30-2012 04:02 AM

Here is one typical example of a chair I made from pallets’ pine almost 3 years back and still standing till today. The good thing in this chair is the challenge of making joints… Mortice and tenon should be done using routers. I learned a lot in dealing with pine.. chisel would just ruin the wood, chipping when nailed. interlaced grain when planing, and others… So Angie, thats a good start for learning those advances. Be careful..

-- Bert

View AngieO's profile


1267 posts in 2176 days

#11 posted 08-31-2012 12:05 AM

I’ve had a lot of fun. I took some boards and played around with some things I wanted to try. I’ll be practicing some things like tenons and such.

Michael…. Those are great suggestions. I do have a couple that are warped and I wondered what tricks there were.

I have plans to make a few things. Now I just need to decide. This is the first time I’ve had more than enough wood to make a few things. Usually I have enough to make the ONE thing.

One bad thing… Our neighborhood is really bad with Mosquitos this summer. I got ate up yesterday and tonight. And this weekend… It’s supposed to be nothin but rain. So I’ll probably be stuck not working. I’ve got some old tarps to a 10×20 tarp garage that I’ll be covering everything with. Maybe a roof isn’t such a bad idea.

Bert….nice chair!

View Dallas's profile


3599 posts in 2516 days

#12 posted 08-31-2012 12:24 AM

Angie, just for an FYI, when I lived in New Albany I use to wander along the river with my kids while they tossed rocks in the water and flagellated the water with fishing line and bobbers. It’s amazing the odd and cool chunks of wood that would float down and get hung up during the spring floods. I once found a whole bundle of marine grade 3/4” plywood hung up on a snag before the water went down. It made a great roof for my FiL’s garage with some left over for small projects. Another time I found a couple of broken paddle wheel blades from the Bell of Louisville….. each piece was almost 10’ long white oak and 3” thick x 16” wide.

Look to the water Grasshopper! Look to the water!

-- Improvise.... Adapt...... Overcome!

View  woodshaver Tony C   's profile

woodshaver Tony C

5982 posts in 3382 days

#13 posted 08-31-2012 12:38 AM

Better use some Off bug repellent if your around those nasty Mosquitos. The West Nile virus has been all over the news lately. Stay safe my Friend!

-- St Augustine FL, Experience is the sum of our mistakes!

View AngieO's profile


1267 posts in 2176 days

#14 posted 08-31-2012 01:19 AM

Dallas… That is an excellent idea.

Woodshaver… I’m lucky I’m not already sick as many bites as I have on me today. I used some stuff but apparently not soon enough. Definitly going to get something better.

View  woodshaver Tony C   's profile

woodshaver Tony C

5982 posts in 3382 days

#15 posted 08-31-2012 01:56 AM

I like deep woods off , It keeps them off me. I’m a magnet for them without it.

-- St Augustine FL, Experience is the sum of our mistakes!

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