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View stefang's profile

Sawdust, a problem or a resource?

by stefang
posted 03-21-2012 08:28 PM


38 replies so far

View SuburbanDon's profile

SuburbanDon

484 posts in 1644 days


#1 posted 03-21-2012 08:32 PM

I don’t make that much sawdust and I just throw it away. I suppose I should bag it. Somebody can use it.

-- --- Measure twice, mis-cut, start over, repeat ---

View zindel's profile

zindel

256 posts in 1300 days


#2 posted 03-21-2012 08:34 PM

If you live in a cold part of the world you could make a sawdust stove. It is basically an oil drum and some vents and you got yourself a lot of heat for the winter. There are videos on youtube if your interested.

-- If you can't fix it with a hammer, You've got an electrical problem.

View kaschimer's profile

kaschimer

89 posts in 1039 days


#3 posted 03-21-2012 08:40 PM

I breathe it… probably should invest in DC at some point… Seriously, the stuff I don’t breathe I throw away :)

-- Steve, Michigan - "Every piece of work is a self portrait of the person who accomplished it - autograph your work with excellence!" - Author unknown

View Roger's profile

Roger

14536 posts in 1454 days


#4 posted 03-21-2012 08:53 PM

I have 5 acres so I walk down the hill & dispense of it down there. I probably look like Santa, only skinier while totin that bag on me back… lol I don’t believe sawdust should be used in flower beds, but, that’s my opinion. I do not know if it is good or bad, or both.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Kentuk55@bellsouth.net

View stefang's profile

stefang

13017 posts in 1984 days


#5 posted 03-21-2012 08:53 PM

Thanks for the suggestion Zindel, but something like that would create an insurance problem here in Norway, not to mention that it would be just plain illegal. Yes Steve, I breath a lot too mine too. After all these years I like it better than fresh air, at least that’s what my wife claims!

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View jmos's profile

jmos

681 posts in 1019 days


#6 posted 03-21-2012 09:21 PM

I’m fortunate that my Brother-in-law has a small organic farm and uses my sawdust/shavings for the animals. I bag it up and my Mother-in-law hauls it away. Otherwise I’d put it out on the curb with the leaves and branches.

-- John

View Dave's profile

Dave

11168 posts in 1490 days


#7 posted 03-21-2012 09:26 PM

Large shavings are good for paint and finish removal, also for burnishing wood. I use the big stuff for animal bedding and kitty litter. I also have a compost pile I put the little stuff in and the other when the animals are done with it. I have just swept it out the front door of the shop. Place in your drive way for traction from mud or snow. Use it for soaking up oil under your car. Make a path in your garden. Add to cement or mortar to lighten it up.
But be careful with plants and animals with black walnut its poisonous.

-- Superdav "No matter where you go - there you are." http://chiselandforge.com

View Manitario's profile

Manitario

2331 posts in 1533 days


#8 posted 03-21-2012 09:29 PM

my wife uses some of it in her compost gardens. I unfortunately use a lot of walnut which apparently is poisonous to other plants, so that gets bagged and out with the trash. It’s too bad; when I’m working on a project with rough sawn wood (which is the only wood I can buy up here) I’ll fill my 30 gallon DC bin every few days.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View Bagtown's profile

Bagtown

1712 posts in 2380 days


#9 posted 03-21-2012 09:33 PM

I dump it out back in the alders by the lake.
Hand plane shavings get used to start the weber kettle and the Big Green Egg.

Mike

-- Mike - In Fort McMurray Alberta

View David Craig's profile

David Craig

2135 posts in 1759 days


#10 posted 03-21-2012 09:34 PM

If it is very fine, I will sometimes save it. I have thought about getting little containers and having samples after each wood type I work on. Mixed with some wood glue, there is not a better filler and the wood color always matches.

David

-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

View Roger's profile

Roger

14536 posts in 1454 days


#11 posted 03-21-2012 09:43 PM

that’s a good point David C. I do have a few small baby food jars (you could use sandwich baggies), with sanding dusts of Maple, Oak, Walnut for the purpose you mention, and it works gr8 for filling in, and like you said, you get a good match

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Kentuk55@bellsouth.net

View jm8's profile

jm8

64 posts in 962 days


#12 posted 03-21-2012 09:50 PM

I believe Wood Magazine listed some uses for sawdust. One was you add melted paraffin wax with saw dust that is in a muffin wrapper (Have no idea what the official name of this wrapper is) and voila, you have a fire starter for the fire place.

-- Joe from Western Ma.... Peace to all

View xwingace's profile

xwingace

204 posts in 1238 days


#13 posted 03-21-2012 10:02 PM

If you mix it with Gorilla glue you can make some pretty interesting scupltures! I forget what the ratio is to get good results, it’s been a while since I have done that.

-- I'm not as good as I once was, but I'm as good once as I ever was.

View shipwright's profile

shipwright

4952 posts in 1448 days


#14 posted 03-21-2012 10:02 PM

I burn it in a regular wood stove. Works great as long as you are patient and add it a shovel full at a time so it doesn’t choke the fire. It adds heat to the shop and really reduces the dump runs. Between sawdust and scraps, I never need kindling. When I ran the Harbour Ferry fleet I had a lot of used engine oil. Mixed with sawdust that would bring a cold shop up to temperature nice and fast.

-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglass boats he would have given us fiberglass trees. http://prmdesigns.com/

View daltxguy's profile

daltxguy

1373 posts in 2564 days


#15 posted 03-21-2012 10:06 PM

I use it in the composting toilet, otherwise it goes in the compost or gets given away to people with chickens. Nothing gets wasted and sawdust is not waste! It’s a valuable resource.

Please don’t throw it away! For goodness sakes, compost it!
Those who throw it away probably turn around and pay to buy compost.

Otoh, if it is treated wood ( please say no) then this is toxic waste and should be disposed of appropriately.

-- If you can't joint it, bead it!

View SPalm's profile

SPalm

4806 posts in 2532 days


#16 posted 03-21-2012 11:29 PM

Hey Stefang, you are absolutly right about not composting it- because of the need for nitrogen. Wood is almost all carbon. Composting requires a ratio of carbon to nitrogen, about 30:1, for the little critters to do their work and turn it into soil.

Wood has a ratio somewhere in the hundreds to 1 ratio depending on the wood. So if one wants to do this you need to add nitrogen for the magic to happen. Nitrogen is found in green plant material. Once it dries, you basically just have carbon. So grass clippings can be used – and other ‘living’ things like kitchen scraps, but you can do the math and find out how much you would need to counteract 30 gallons of sawdust.

Side note: Dead mature tree leaves are already at the perfect 30:1 ratio. (Give or take).

I don’t know what to do with mine, but when I wanted to compost it, I found all this stuff out.

Steve

-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View Dennisgrosen's profile

Dennisgrosen

10850 posts in 1765 days


#17 posted 03-21-2012 11:54 PM

if you make enoff sawdust you can compress it to woodbric´s or to pellets
that can be used in a stove as firewood

but that require a hydralic mashinery :-)

Dennis

View joebloe's profile

joebloe

157 posts in 944 days


#18 posted 03-22-2012 12:36 AM

With me it makes a difference what kind of wood I’m working with.If I’m working with cypress ,which I buy rough cut,I save the saw dust for a friend of the family,that has pets ,works great in the bottom of the cages.If its pine I compost it.

View gfadvm's profile

gfadvm

10845 posts in 1340 days


#19 posted 03-22-2012 01:59 AM

I have dumped it on the flower beds for years and it has not caused any problems contrary to others and yes I put the walnut right in with the mesquite, pine, fir, hedge, etc. I’ll post some pics of the flower beds if it ever stops raining! (6” and still raining).

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View Schwieb's profile

Schwieb

1515 posts in 2111 days


#20 posted 03-22-2012 02:03 AM

I have to be a little careful about this. We use as much as we can for our animals. You must be sure of what you are spreading out for animal contact. I find some use for MOST but not all shavings. Some woods are toxic to some animals, Walnut for one. If I am running a bunch of pine or cypress, even oak I will use it in the horse stalls. If a bag is really mixed up with different shavings, I will spread it out in the chicken yard. They’ll scratch at it like crazy and after awhile it makes pretty good compost. I discard real sawdust and fine dust. The hand-plane and green turning shavings are pretty nice for rabbit beading and making paths. The spiral shapes are pretty cool as they dry. I do have a open burning site and am allowed to do that but I see energy just going to waste and wish I had a simple method of taping into that potential. It does not work good as mulch unless you don’t want things to grow.

-- Dr. Ken, Florida - Durch harte arbeit werden Träume wahr.

View devann's profile

devann

1735 posts in 1342 days


#21 posted 03-22-2012 02:10 AM

I dump some of it into the compost pile. I use some of it in my art work, the wood art pieces. I bottle it up depending upon how it was cut, by species, and by size .

-- Darrell, making more sawdust than I know what to do with

View buffalosean's profile

buffalosean

174 posts in 2037 days


#22 posted 03-22-2012 02:16 AM

Saw dust, shavings and chips are good bedding for animals.

-- There are many ways to skin a cat...... but, the butter knife is not recommended

View Martyroc's profile

Martyroc

2708 posts in 956 days


#23 posted 03-22-2012 02:28 AM

I compost it, I have plenty of green and brown items in my compost, so there is never the wrong mix in my composter.before the composter I would just throw it out, very wasteful but I honestly didn’t know how else to utilize it.

-- Martin ....always count the number of fingers you have before, and after using the saw.

View stefang's profile

stefang

13017 posts in 1984 days


#24 posted 03-22-2012 09:19 AM

A lot of great ideas for using the waste. I think it might be good if someone came up with an affordable sawdust compactor for home use. I remember quite a few years ago we tried putting sawdust into empty milk cartons. They didn’t burn very well. Plus it was PIN to do that.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View WDHLT15's profile

WDHLT15

1125 posts in 1126 days


#25 posted 03-22-2012 11:00 AM

I sell it for $10 a pick-up load. The sawmill makes a bunch of sawdust.

-- Danny Located in Perry, GA. Forester. Wood-Mizer LT15 Sawmill. Nyle L53 Dehumidification Kiln

View bleorgh's profile

bleorgh

17 posts in 907 days


#26 posted 03-22-2012 11:27 AM

Saw dust.75% Ashes from a wood stove 25%(binding agent). Sugar and water cut 50/50. Make a paste pliable like silly putty. Stuff mix in 6 in. Sewer pipe scrap piece 18 inches long and wait about a week. Knock out your log with a handle of a sledge hammer. May come out in pieces but who cares…you’re gonna burn it. You may drill some ventilation holes in the pipe also depending on the humidity in your area (I live in the desert) .

-- The minute my 42" Crick level LIES I'll kiss your ass !

View bleorgh's profile

bleorgh

17 posts in 907 days


#27 posted 03-22-2012 11:31 AM

Saw dust.75% Ashes from a wood stove 25%(binding agent). Sugar and water cut 50/50. Make a paste pliable like silly putty. Stuff mix in 6 in. Sewer pipe scrap piece 18 inches long and wait about a week. Knock out your log with a handle of a sledge hammer. May come out in pieces but who cares…you’re gonna burn it. You may drill some ventilation holes in the pipe also depending on the humidity in your area (I live in the desert) .

-- The minute my 42" Crick level LIES I'll kiss your ass !

View bleorgh's profile

bleorgh

17 posts in 907 days


#28 posted 03-22-2012 11:56 AM

Experiment with the mix. Sugar is cheap but you wont want a syrup as it will burn way too hot for a wood stove.

-- The minute my 42" Crick level LIES I'll kiss your ass !

View racerglen's profile

racerglen

2300 posts in 1430 days


#29 posted 03-22-2012 12:03 PM

Sawdust also works suprizingly well as a hand cleaner, I have a mechanic friend with a cabnet shop next door, he uses all he can get as floor cleanup and as a hand cleaner.

-- Glen, Vernon B.C. Canada

View Ocelot's profile

Ocelot

574 posts in 1288 days


#30 posted 07-22-2014 07:29 PM

I dump it under the berry bushes to try to keep the weeds down. Doesn’t seem to do any harm. I also have a chipper and often chip walnut branches. This stuff also goes under the berry bushes and seems to do no harm.

-Paul

View stefang's profile

stefang

13017 posts in 1984 days


#31 posted 07-22-2014 07:38 PM

Now if we just had a way to dispose of cutoffs. Maybe a termite nest?

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Yonak's profile

Yonak

270 posts in 171 days


#32 posted 07-22-2014 07:58 PM

I divide it out between shavings and sawdust, according to operation and which dust collector I use.

There are many horse owners in my area who, basically, fight over my wood shavings. I sell it for the cost of the bags and a little bit for helping to load in their trucks. I’ve never had a problem getting rid of it.

The sawdust I sell to a business that uses it, somehow, as a stuffing for a product they manufacture, I’ve never asked for details but they buy all I produce.

Regarding walnut shavings, the latest research I had heard, the shavings are safe for plant bedding. Juglone, the chemical which is hazardous to some plants and to horses, is concentrated in the nut hulls and roots of the walnut tree and only scarce amounts in the wood itself.

A few weeks ago, another poster reported a more recent study regarding juglone and horses and the specific danger, which was not as was generally reported and long thought. I don’t remember the specifics. gfadvm may have more up-to-date information on that.

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

1389 posts in 447 days


#33 posted 07-22-2014 08:11 PM

I use mine for mulch in the back yard, but I’ve pretty much reached my limit for use there. A friend on Facebook said that some potters use sawdust when they fire their pottery. I’d love to donate mine to that.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

View Ocelot's profile

Ocelot

574 posts in 1288 days


#34 posted 07-22-2014 09:24 PM

I re-woke an old thread and I see y’all are working it!

I just now read this :

http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2013-08-03/classified/ct-sun-0804-garden-qa-20130803_1_black-walnut-tree-tolerate-juglone-plants

... and maybe I’ve just been lucky. I suspect that chipping whole walnut trees and dumping it under blueberries is a bad thing – but it surely hasn’t shown any signs of trouble yet. I’ll stop doing it anyway, just in case.

Here’s a PDF. I had to substitute spaces for the %20 to get it to load.

I don’t know if the chips and dust from dried walnut has the same effect as parts of “fresh” trees.

http://hort.uwex.edu/sites/default/files/Black%20Walnut%20Toxicity.pdf

-Paul

View Shawn Masterson's profile

Shawn Masterson

1254 posts in 598 days


#35 posted 07-22-2014 09:30 PM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IvPL7KC1DEA

Also you could invest in a pellet mill and make it into wood pellets to use or sell.

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

2518 posts in 1001 days


#36 posted 07-22-2014 09:34 PM

I compost my planer shavings unless it is walnut but just toss the sawdust.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

2518 posts in 1001 days


#37 posted 07-22-2014 09:34 PM

I compost my planer shavings unless it is walnut but just toss the sawdust.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View timbertailor's profile

timbertailor

512 posts in 74 days


#38 posted 07-22-2014 11:43 PM

Since I do not separate pressure treated from non treated saw dust, I bag it up and use is as an oil\fluid absorbent.

I always manage to spill something when servicing the vehicles.

-- Brad, Texas, https://www.youtube.com/user/tonkatoytruck/feed

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