Fair price for black walnut logs?

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Forum topic by Structure posted 05-18-2016 07:27 AM 444 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Structure's profile


6 posts in 396 days

05-18-2016 07:27 AM

I’m looking to get some black walnut to turn it into bowls on my lathe. I can’t find any for free at the moment, but there are a few people trying to sell it in my area, with “make me an offer” ads.

Please avoid the “however much you’re willing to pay” answer. Honestly, how cheap should I expect to be able to buy it? (For example, a 16 inch log that is 10 inches in diameter.)

2 replies so far

View TravisH's profile


438 posts in 1353 days

#1 posted 05-18-2016 10:46 AM

If this is the typical nimrod on Craigslist I won’t give more than the going rate for firewood. Typically it was cut up for fire wood, not split as that required too much work, and then someone told them they had a fortune. The fact they use a “make me an offer” is never a good thing in my opinion.

You can also look at the log and think how many bowl blanks, etc… will it make and get a rough estimate of value that way if you prefer. Just think about how much of that log disappears when making blanks. Take into account often bowl blanks come ready to go, no surprises with insects, and waxed. Heck you can get a 3, 4×3 blanks for probably 15 bucks off ebay now for example no sap wood. Smaller logs don’t equate to expensive blanks usually.

View soob's profile


223 posts in 626 days

#2 posted 05-18-2016 06:25 PM

“It’s $7 a board foot at the lumber store, so how ‘bout $5 per board foot [for a 3’ log that’s been sitting exposed to the weather in my driveway for months]?”

It just depends on where you’re at and what the market is like. I know you don’t like that answer.

I will say that short, small logs are basically worthless except to hobbyists.

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