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Milling Lumber from Logs - how do you Debark?

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Forum topic by PurpLev posted 09-10-2010 07:01 PM 10143 views 0 times favorited 24 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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PurpLev

8523 posts in 3112 days


09-10-2010 07:01 PM

My last attempt at resawing logs to lumber, I debarked the logs using a recycled kitchen clever which stood up to the job quite well, but it made me wonder – how do YOU debark the logs? axe? other?

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.


24 replies so far

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Woodcanuck

128 posts in 2463 days


#1 posted 09-10-2010 07:21 PM

Not that I’ve done this a lot, but I’ve used an adze and a mattock. The mattock was a small hammer sized mattock, which I took the ‘blade’ to the grinder and sharpened to cut through the bark.

This worked pretty well, though my aim wasn’t great so I ended up with gouges in the wood…which in my case was for a crib for a dock so I didn’t care that much (helped let the kreosote soak in).

-- Ian - Life's a game, if you don't play, you can't win.

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jack1

2057 posts in 3490 days


#2 posted 09-10-2010 07:24 PM

Have you tried a good veterinarian? ;0)

-- jack -- ...measure once, curse twice!

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Bob #2

3809 posts in 3485 days


#3 posted 09-10-2010 07:25 PM

I just cut it off after slicing it. Usually in the squaring process on the Table saw.
If you are taking big stuff the guys usually turn the cant 90° and run the band saw on each side.

-- A mind, like a home, is furnished by its owner

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CampD

1474 posts in 2949 days


#4 posted 09-10-2010 07:42 PM

What #2 said!
If I’m making rustic furniture, I use a draw knife and peel the bark.

-- Doug...

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PurpLev

8523 posts in 3112 days


#5 posted 09-10-2010 07:49 PM

veterinarian… now why didn’t I think of THAT!

Thanks for the ideas, and for the confirmation of the drawknife – that’s how I used the clever (not having a drawknife around)

The reason I don’t want to leave it on at the moment, is that I am keeping the sliced lumber in the basement, going through the kitchen, and don’t want any of the bark to start chipping off all over making a mess. or this will be the last time I’ll be working with wood ;)

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

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swirt

2117 posts in 2435 days


#6 posted 09-10-2010 08:05 PM

I use a drawknife for stuff in the 8” or less diameter or a barking spud for something bigger. Though really that is just me, a large drawknife could do it all.

For the drawknife, the problem most run into is how to hold the wood.
I use the crotch of an oak tree and some rope
http://www.timberframe-tools.com/techniques/drawshaving-larger-posts/

A more authentic approach is the shaving ladder
http://www.timberframe-tools.com/techniques/shaving-ladder/

This is a great video of a guy peeling a large log with a drawknife.

Here is a simple video of the barking spud

Notice that either of those methods is fast.

THis guy is using a pressure washer and it takes forever.

And this guy give a great explanation of the options in the old tools

Ahh boy now I’ve gone and lost another half-hour of my day on Youtube LOL

-- Galootish log blog, http://www.timberframe-tools.com

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Div

1653 posts in 2403 days


#7 posted 09-10-2010 10:02 PM

If I want to debark a log a use a flat spade. I have an old one with a short blade just for this purpose. Similar in use to the barking spud. This works best if the log is freshly felled. If the log has been down for some time, the bark becomes real hard to remove!

-- Div @ the bottom end of Africa. "A woodworker's sharpest tool should be his mind."

View PurpLev's profile

PurpLev

8523 posts in 3112 days


#8 posted 09-10-2010 10:21 PM

Thanks for the vids swirt, and suggestions, the drawknife looks the easiest and much more convenient to use than what I was doing, but the spur also looks like a good option.

Div – I was working with some 10+ y/o logs, and the bark in some areas peels real easy in large pieces, while other spots it was as if it was glued to the log and hard to remove. thanks for the tidbit!

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

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CharlieM1958

16242 posts in 3681 days


#9 posted 09-10-2010 10:23 PM

Debarking is easy. Airplane or cruise ship are my preferred methods. Coming home and going back to work is the hard part.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

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PurpLev

8523 posts in 3112 days


#10 posted 09-10-2010 10:32 PM

hmm…. good thing it’s a friday Charlie.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

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dbhost

5605 posts in 2695 days


#11 posted 09-10-2010 10:35 PM

Very good one Charlie…

I have always debarked with a camping hatchet. Yes I leave some gouges, no biggie…

-- My workshop blog can be found at http://daves-workshop.blogspot.com

View CampD's profile

CampD

1474 posts in 2949 days


#12 posted 09-10-2010 10:51 PM

I bought a couple different drawknifes from antique dealers or flea markets cheap,
I’m always on the look-out for a deal.

-- Doug...

View swirt's profile

swirt

2117 posts in 2435 days


#13 posted 09-11-2010 04:32 AM

If you are looking to make due with something you might already have, and you don’t plan on doing this a lot. One of the common dandelion pluckers work decently too (this is not mine)

You can hammer the two tines so that they bend down just a little bit and form a concave shape facing the log. The modification doesn’t interfere with it doing its weed popping job. I had one with a longer handle that worked pretty well …. then it disappeared. I think it is hanging out with some of my stray socks some place.

-- Galootish log blog, http://www.timberframe-tools.com

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Sawmillnc

150 posts in 2517 days


#14 posted 09-11-2010 04:47 AM

I have used a pressure washer on cedar and poplar but only on the rare occasion. Debarking is done to reduce blade wear from embedded dirt and rocks.

I generally don’t debark as it isn’t cost effective.

-- Kyle Edwards, http://www.sawmillnc.com, Iron Station , NC (near Charlotte)

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Sawmillnc

150 posts in 2517 days


#15 posted 09-11-2010 04:47 AM

BTW.. commercial logging uses a debarker.

-- Kyle Edwards, http://www.sawmillnc.com, Iron Station , NC (near Charlotte)

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