Mill it or burn it?

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Forum topic by bigblockyeti posted 04-20-2018 01:19 PM 589 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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5113 posts in 1718 days

04-20-2018 01:19 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

I harvested this walnut in March 2017 and it’s been air drying, mostly under tarp since. I’m moving soon and debating to mill it or burn it? I’ve had good luck with air drying walnut logs this long before milling previously so knowing I’ll lose ~ 4” from each end is tolerable given they’re 72” right now. My two concerns are spending ~$75 to mill them without having a project in mind and the relatively small amount of heart wood. Opinions and suggestions are welcome.

10 replies so far

View smitdog's profile


353 posts in 2102 days

#1 posted 04-20-2018 01:36 PM

I hate to say it but I’m not sure I’d go through the trouble of milling that little bit of heart wood. I’d be more inclined to chop it into smaller chunks for turning. I like the contrast between heart and sap more on small bowls and things like this –

But I would never fault anyone for trying to eke out as much walnut lumber as possible!

-- Jarrett - Mount Vernon, Ohio

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5113 posts in 1718 days

#2 posted 04-20-2018 01:40 PM

If you want them, you can have them, I don’t turn much.

View recycle1943's profile


1786 posts in 1619 days

#3 posted 04-20-2018 02:52 PM

Yeah, it’s shame to burn walnut just because it’s one of the slowest growing trees we have. Walnut has for quite a while been deemed precious and if I had a means to mill them I’d be up there today and pick ‘em up.

-- Dick, Malvern Ohio - my biggest fear is that when I die, my wife sells my toys for what I told her I paid for them

View Holt's profile


250 posts in 2626 days

#4 posted 04-20-2018 09:00 PM

If you have a band saw then this might be a good excuse to build a jig and try milling them yourself. If you don’t have a band saw, then even better, you have an excuse to buy a new tool!!!!

-- ...Specialization is for insects.

View jamsomito's profile


158 posts in 423 days

#5 posted 04-20-2018 09:21 PM

I’d mill it for sure!

View msinc's profile


382 posts in 501 days

#6 posted 04-21-2018 12:45 AM

I d mill it for sure!

- jamsomito

Yep, and I have seen/made some really awesome projects with boards that have some of the sap wood on them. The contrast is just another interesting and unique thing about black walnut. Some areas of the country it is not too terribly rare, but in others it is a real gem and can be tough to find and expensive when you do.
If you absolutely don’t want to mess with or pay for milling it maybe go to a saw mill and see if they will swap you a few rough cut boards for it. Anything is better than striking a match to walnut. Even if they just give you a few oak or hickory boards if you can one day use them and they don’t cost nothing…you still made out.
Wish you were closer…I have a sawmill.

View chrisstef's profile


17382 posts in 3003 days

#7 posted 04-21-2018 12:52 AM

This guy ^. Yup.

Wood gods yeti. You burn it and your next glue up splits. Guarantee it. Hell, you might orange peel a finish too. Burning walnut = 7 years of bad luck is what i heard.

-- Its not a crack, its a casting imperfection.

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5113 posts in 1718 days

#8 posted 04-21-2018 11:40 AM

I do have a decent sized bandsaw and that’s how I’ve milled most of the rough wood I’ve got. I may just wait till we’re under contract then worry about milling it myself as we pack up. Full disclosure, I really don’t want to burn walnut, when I had to take down three trees for my parents it was tough just burning some of the smaller branches.

View Rollie's profile


14 posts in 759 days

#9 posted 04-21-2018 11:57 AM

Go ahead and mill it now. Because:

1. It will be much easier to handle lumber than logs.

2. When you get moved you will be too busy with honey dos and setting up a new shop.

3. While you are performing all the other tasks the lumber will be drying.

Just a thought,


View Kelly's profile


2025 posts in 2941 days

#10 posted 04-22-2018 04:05 AM

It’s kind of sad how much we take some things for granted. For me it’s fruitwood.

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