Wood gloat - Alabama spalted maple and cherry

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Project by RichardH posted 08-04-2010 04:46 PM 2281 views 0 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

No posts lately as I was on my annual trek back to Alabama to visit family.

Last year we took down a maple and I was worried that it would be a little too far gone by this summer to be useful. It’s a little punky near the edges, and a little pit marked, but I like working with wood like this, so should be fine. These were the biggest slabs I’ve done so far with the largest portion over 22 inches wide (chainsaw in the background has a 28 inch bar for reference)

While there on this trip, I helped my father-n-law take down a dying 12-14 inch diameter cherry. I cut a few slabs and a bunch of turning blanks from this wood.

In the end I filled up the back of my suburban (had to throw my own luggage on top) with wood. My wife is not a great fan of me hauling all this wood back, but she has come to accept it and note that only my luggage rides home on top of the car ;-)

I mostly do lathe work, but will have to start thinking of how I might use slabs in the future. No hurries as I don’t have a kiln and will just let them air dry over a year or two.

By the way, still getting used to a small chainsaw mill apparatus. Given the near 100 degree heat and near 100% humidity, it was flat out hard work. Still, very satisfying to stack up these slabs.


-- "It's supposed to be hard. If it wasn't hard, everyone would do it...It's the hard that makes it great."

9 comments so far

View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 3876 days

#1 posted 08-04-2010 04:49 PM

Nice wood gloat, Richard.

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 3440 days

#2 posted 08-04-2010 04:59 PM

Great looking wood. I am looking forward to seeing some of the items you make from your wood.

-- Hal, Tennessee

View dpoisson's profile


190 posts in 3118 days

#3 posted 08-04-2010 05:33 PM

Awesome stuff! Take your time to decide what project “is worthy” of such nice wood lol.

I was thinking about doing something similar near my house, but after seeing your chainsaw, I see I’m sorely under-equiped with my craftsman 16” chainsaw ;-)

I’d be very curious to see pictures (or simply an explanation of) how you went about to cutting those slabs?



View RichardH's profile


295 posts in 3206 days

#4 posted 08-04-2010 06:09 PM

Thanks everyone. Truth told, I’m not too comfortable with the term “wood gloat” as I do treasure the fact that I have access to some interesting raw material. Also, the wood is interesting to me personally since I know exactly where it came from and in this case, even chopped down the tree myself.

dpoisson, I wish I had taken a few minutes to map out the process. It was only the 3rd time I’ve ever cut slabs and I’m still learning from it and from other posts here on LJs with far more experience than myself. Couple of notes though that will give you a good idea of how it worked:
old blog post of mine when I first got the jig

- First, I only recently have the bigger saw. Got it on ebay and though used, they are still pretty expensive. Thank goodness it works well and has good power, because I was nervous it would be crappy and all worn out.
- I bought a small chainsaw mill jig off ebay from a place called pantherpros. I think the jig cost like $89.00 for one that could handle up to 24 inch wide slabs.
(1) attach a 2×6 across the top of the downed log. using a ladder would have been even better and would have helped me avoid a little of the twist I got in one or two slabs
(2) The jig rides along the 2×6 and creates a flat surface across the whole log
(3) Adjust the depth of the jig and then use the newly created flat surface on the log to act as your reference for the next cuts…the jig rides along this surface and creates a nice relatively smooth slab

Key tips (thanks to LJ FordMike) was to use a ripping chain (its ground more flat and cuts better against all the end grain) and elevate one end of the log to let gravity do some of the work.

One final note, this would be tough work for a small saw, but if you only had a few to do and not too big of logs, you might could get by with a jig that Granberg makes. it’s open ended, so theoretically you could cut from one side then come back from the other end…not sure how well that would work, but I did consider it for myself.

-- "It's supposed to be hard. If it wasn't hard, everyone would do it...It's the hard that makes it great."

View Ken90712's profile


17594 posts in 3392 days

#5 posted 08-04-2010 06:55 PM

Nice score! Looking good!

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View stumpybear's profile


50 posts in 3059 days

#6 posted 08-04-2010 07:43 PM

WOW!! The possibilities running through my head!!! Nice!
You can’t beat a Husky saw either!!!!

-- Stumpybear,Petersburg PA

View dub560's profile


615 posts in 3117 days

#7 posted 08-04-2010 10:59 PM

can i have that large piece, please

-- Life is enjoyable especially when you borrow from people

View cwdance1's profile


1159 posts in 3463 days

#8 posted 08-04-2010 11:02 PM

What a great find, I will be down this weekend to get it. HaHa

View dubsaloon's profile


621 posts in 2997 days

#9 posted 12-21-2010 12:46 PM

I gotta get me on of those. Nice lumber at a great price.

-- The works of evil people are not the problem. It is the "Good" people standing by and watching not speaking up. Dubsaloon

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