The ugly side of urban logging... This is why yard logs are not worth buying.

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Blog entry by HalDougherty posted 721 days ago 2408 reads 1 time favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Here is what you get in a lot of yard trees. The owner always swears nobody every put any metal in my trees… Yea right….

The screw driver in this slab has 8 inches of surface exposed. The blade just missed it…. Hitting that would have made my metal detector go off… Each time it goes off it costs me $25.00 for a new blade. This cherry tree is a nice average size tree and the screwdriver was in the center at the first crotch.

I didn’t saw this log. I traded a couple of gunstock blanks for several nice cherry slabs. There’s some other metal hiding in the slabs somewhere. You can see black stains on several places at the butt end of the log. I’m going to cut out parts for some Maloof style low back dining chairs from this cherry log.

-- Hal, Tennessee

15 comments so far

View WoodJediNTraining's profile


407 posts in 1289 days

#1 posted 721 days ago

Hal that is one thing Robert Ross always is concerned about when I bring a tree for him to mill. The last tree I bought him had 5 nails in it and they were in the center (various places) of the 32 inch wide x 8 foot log.. I had to replace 2 of his blades which amounted to payiing a blade replacement fee along with the milling fee

-- Newbie, aka Wood_Jedi,

View Joe Lyddon's profile (online now)

Joe Lyddon

7618 posts in 2648 days

#2 posted 721 days ago

Way back when, he probably placed his screwdriver in the crotch of the tree and forgot about it…
... if you showed it to him, he would probably say “I wondered where that screwdriver went!”... LOL

Sure glad you caught it without damage being done!
That would have been a little scary…

-- Have Fun! Joe Lyddon - Alta Loma, CA USA - Home: ... My Small Gallery:"

View Roger's profile


14096 posts in 1400 days

#3 posted 721 days ago

Wow. Why would anyone, well, nevermind…

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe.

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 1833 days

#4 posted 721 days ago

I’ve got an old rusty logging chain that I found inside a log… how it got in there I’ll never know. The tree service guys hit it with a chainsaw while they were bucking the logs into sections short enough to haul. I got the chain and passed on the log… That wasn’t all the metal in it. I cut out the chain and I put it back to work.

-- Hal, Tennessee

View Don W's profile

Don W

14604 posts in 1164 days

#5 posted 721 days ago

This came out of my yard, so I knew better. As much as I’d wanted some birch lumber….....

-- Master hand plane hoarder. -

View jaykaypur's profile


3252 posts in 1004 days

#6 posted 721 days ago

Just a touch this way or that and you’d have had some firewoks in addition to the metal detector “alarm” going off!

-- Use it up, Wear it out --------------- Make it do, Or do without!

View Charlie's profile


5 posts in 721 days

#7 posted 721 days ago

I’ve seen this many times. Always in the back of my mind.

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

11052 posts in 1702 days

#8 posted 721 days ago

Hal. I know what you mean. I helped my friend take a bunch of logs that were on his place ( which used to be a campground). All these trees were by the road- you now what that means- signs nailed on and nails never taken out. I had to buy the sawyer one new blade and we cut around all the others!!...............Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View bowtie's profile


804 posts in 942 days

#9 posted 721 days ago

Now thats lucky! I sawed into 2 nails in a nice cedar from a local pasture, what a sick feeling. I guess thats part of it though.

-- bowtie,.....jus passin thru....

View thebigvise's profile


190 posts in 1497 days

#10 posted 721 days ago

Wow! Thanks for the visually unmistakable warning to us all.

-- Paul, Clinton, NC

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

13212 posts in 934 days

#11 posted 721 days ago

Grew up on the farm. Old farmers are notorious for using trees to nail fence to. I never take the bottom 4-6 feet for that reason.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it. - It's not ability that we often lack, but the patience to use our ability

View rilanda's profile


129 posts in 751 days

#12 posted 721 days ago

When I first started in the wood trade as an apprentice I worked at the conversion end of the wood mill (the company produced telephone switchboards). I was not unusual to find large chunks of shrapnel in logs particularly Beech that had come from the Black Forest in Germany. We were only re-sawing the wood and preparing it for the kilns using circular saws; when one of these pieces hit that saw blade it raised some sparks and jiggered the bade up, re-sharpening was my job!

-- Bill, Nottingham. Remember its not waiting for the storm to end, but learning to dance in the rain that counts. If you dont make mistakes, you make nothing at all.

View rustfever's profile


619 posts in 1906 days

#13 posted 720 days ago

Once found a plow share that had been left in the crotch of a black walnut tree about 50 or 75 years before. About 30-40#. And the sparks flew, the saw blade coughed up a number of carbide teeth. Still was a good deal. The Walnut was beautiful and I sold several pieces for a great deal more than the cost of sawing and repair of the 60” round blade’s carbide teeth.

-- Rustfever, Central California

View grizzman's profile


6769 posts in 1900 days

#14 posted 717 days ago

YEP, every time i take a tree to my sawyer, the question comes, where did you get that tree, and of coarse they use a metal detector and so far i have not had to pay for any blades…...this last June – July Ive gotten these woods added to my store, Dog wood, Mimosa wood,Oak and Cherry…..would enjoy seeing your saw in operation Hal…

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View Post_Oakie's profile


84 posts in 750 days

#15 posted 711 days ago

Worst I ever cut into was a walnut log that was hollow… and filled with cement. Made quite a racket and destroyed the blade, of course. Part of the business. Norwood’s cobaltized blades do a good job cutting through wires and nails. I cut through nearly 50 strands of wire in this walnut log with no problem…

until I hit this anchor bolt.

-- Good judgement comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgement.

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