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Apple Tree Slabs

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Forum topic by derrickparks57 posted 01-23-2016 06:34 PM 928 views 0 times favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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derrickparks57

128 posts in 1334 days


01-23-2016 06:34 PM

The apple tree in my backyard fell down before Christmas, I finally managed to cut the tree up a few weeks ago. I left the main part of the trunk with the plans to cut it up into a couple slabs with hopes I could make something out of it. Well I finally had a Saturday without it raining so I proceeded to tackle this thing.

Lessons learned:
1. I can’t cut straight with a chainsaw.
2. My bandsaw wasn’t really happy about resawing it.

I painted the ends and stickered it up so we’ll see what it looks like in about a year. If it doesn’t work out I’ll just chop it up and throw it in the smoker.

-- Derrick, Florida, DP Woodwerks


17 replies so far

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Kelly

1113 posts in 2407 days


#1 posted 01-23-2016 09:56 PM

We have thousands of acres of fruit wood here, in Eastern Washington. I just pulled a little cherry from the prunings in a friend’s orchard. Running it through the band saw, it pitched the wheels so bad I had to clean them to keep tracking where it belonged.

I have a lot of spurtles, wine stoppers, scoops and so forth made of apple wood. It’s a nice wood for kitchen utensils, since the grain is tight and has a lot of nice character.

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Kelly

1113 posts in 2407 days


#2 posted 01-27-2016 04:06 AM

P.S. You have nothing to lose by treating all that flat area. It’ll lose moisture fast too. Just not as fast as the ends.

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derrickparks57

128 posts in 1334 days


#3 posted 01-27-2016 06:31 PM

Yeah I completely cleaned the bandsaw afterwards. We’ve had a good amount of rain lately and it was really wet, the sawdust stuck to everything.

-- Derrick, Florida, DP Woodwerks

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dhazelton

2324 posts in 1759 days


#4 posted 01-27-2016 11:34 PM

Do folks usually slab fruitwood or make bowl blanks? Just asking as I have an apple tree that looks kinda sad.

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Kelly

1113 posts in 2407 days


#5 posted 01-27-2016 11:42 PM

It all depends. I was in woodwork over forty years and never turned on a lathe until a little over a month ago. Prior to that, I slabbed all mine and used it for small things, like spurtles, spoons, band saw boxes, box joint boxes. . . .

Fruit trees get pruned every year and cut in ways not friendly to making lumber out of them. Too, everything commercial has gone the way of dwarf trees. You put more on an acre and end up with more fruit without having to climb fourteen foot ladders anymore. So its smaller pieces of wood, whether slabs or slices.

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derrickparks57

128 posts in 1334 days


#6 posted 01-28-2016 12:06 AM

This one fell down in a wind storm. The smaller stuff I cut up for my BBQ smoker but I figured what the heck lets see what I can get out of it.

-- Derrick, Florida, DP Woodwerks

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BurlyBob

3674 posts in 1728 days


#7 posted 01-28-2016 05:52 AM

That is truly beautiful wood. I sure hope you’ll be able to put it to good use.

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nicksmurf111

361 posts in 913 days


#8 posted 01-29-2016 04:57 AM

I tried squared up a sassafras log last year. I learned the hard way that I should have sealed the ends. It was way too much work to do freehand chainsaw work, and planing it so it was reasonably square. I probably should just avoid small logs/jobs.

Did you follow a string/level when you where chainsawing? I had trouble following a good reference line/plane on the first cut. I’m not sure if I want to invest in a chainsaw mill…there is a lot of kurf, and there are plenty of sawmill hobbyists in my neck of the woods.

-- Nicholas

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Mosquito

8082 posts in 1755 days


#9 posted 01-29-2016 05:19 AM

If it were big enough to get quarter saw the size of a handsaw handle, that’s probably what I’d do with it, but that’s just me :-)

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN - http://www.youtube.com/MosquitoMods - http://www.TheModsquito.com

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nicksmurf111

361 posts in 913 days


#10 posted 01-29-2016 05:26 AM


If it were big enough to get quarter saw the size of a handsaw handle, that s probably what I d do with it, but that s just me :-)

- Mosquito

I’m not following, could you clarify? Are you suggesting to handsaw it, or to take it to the sawmill if it’s large enough to make it economical? I imagine a handsaw handle is larger than 4 inches.

-- Nicholas

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derrickparks57

128 posts in 1334 days


#11 posted 01-29-2016 05:43 AM

I tried using a chalk line but since the log wasn’t straight it didn’t really work. Halfway through cutting it I realized that if I use the chainsaw to make a shallow cut down the length of the log it was easier to follow. Sort of, all the chips were getting in the way while I was cutting.

I ended up with a slab about 2 1/2” thick, 9” wide at the narrowest spot, and about 36” long.

-- Derrick, Florida, DP Woodwerks

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nicksmurf111

361 posts in 913 days


#12 posted 01-29-2016 06:11 AM


I tried using a chalk line but since the log wasn t straight it didn t really work. Halfway through cutting it I realized that if I use the chainsaw to make a shallow cut down the length of the log it was easier to follow. Sort of, all the chips were getting in the way while I was cutting.

I ended up with a slab about 2 1/2” thick, 9” wide at the narrowest spot, and about 36” long.

- derrickparks57

Yeah, that’s about the same experience I had. I think the longer the bar you have, the more chance you have to guide the freehand cut straight.

-- Nicholas

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LanternLightFarm

11 posts in 301 days


#13 posted 02-08-2016 04:12 PM

I’ve had luck using my chainsaw to cut small pieces of timber by making a frame out of 2×4’s that is the length of the log to be cut, it gets screwed to the ends of the log. I then hot glue 2, 1/4” spacers to my chainsaw bar to raise it just off the wood frame, and proceed to cut the first slab off the log. For successive boards just lower the frame the thickness of the slab you want to saw. Just make sure you have a sharp chain and plenty of time to make the cut!

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JoeinGa

7481 posts in 1470 days


#14 posted 02-08-2016 05:04 PM

DONT throw it in the smoker !!! How thick are those slabs? If you dont have a lathe , SOMEbody who does would LOVE to have those to turn !

-- Perform A Random Act Of Kindness Today ... Pay It Forward

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JayT

4777 posts in 1674 days


#15 posted 02-08-2016 05:18 PM


If it were big enough to get quarter saw the size of a handsaw handle, that s probably what I d do with it, but that s just me :-)

- Mosquito

I m not following, could you clarify? Are you suggesting to handsaw it, or to take it to the sawmill if it s large enough to make it economical? I imagine a handsaw handle is larger than 4 inches.

- nicksmurf111

What Mos is referring to is that many vintage hand saws have quarter sawn apple wood for the handle. It’s hard to find any apple trees big enough to get wood to replace worn out and damaged handles, so if the tree were big enough, he would use it for that purpose. So would I.

-- "Good judgement is the result of experience. A lot of experience is the result of poor judgement."

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