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Need advice on hickory

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Forum topic by Savage86 posted 06-08-2018 02:38 AM 668 views 0 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Savage86

51 posts in 389 days


06-08-2018 02:38 AM

There’s a local guy up here by me that has a ton of fresh cut hickory logs. I can buy it for 63cents a board foot. Is that a good price ?


22 replies so far

View Woodknack's profile

Woodknack

11769 posts in 2402 days


#1 posted 06-08-2018 02:49 AM

No, that’s terrible, don’t buy any of it. What’s his name and address?

-- Rick M, http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

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John Smith

989 posts in 185 days


#2 posted 06-08-2018 02:50 AM

when you say “logs” – does that mean that you buy the raw log and mill it yourself ?
or – will he mill it for you and you buy the cut boards ??
if you buy the whole log – do you have a way to mill it ?

-- Graduated Valedictorian from the University of HardKnocks --

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Savage86

51 posts in 389 days


#3 posted 06-08-2018 02:54 AM

Yes John I should have mention that. They will be raw logs but we just bought a mil. I know I will have to get it kiln dried but I have never done anything with hickory before. I have a kitchen build to do so I figured if anyone could give me solid advice it would be the forums on here. I tried searching through the other topics but I won’t lie I got lazy and just posted my in question lol. I thought it was a good price just wasn’t sure

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Rich

2962 posts in 612 days


#4 posted 06-08-2018 02:56 AM

That’s dirt cheap for any wood. I don’t know where you’re located, but it might take some time to dry. Just food for thought.

The other thing is that I’ve found it’s difficult to work with. It’s prone to burning and chatter. The final result is beautiful though.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

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Savage86

51 posts in 389 days


#5 posted 06-08-2018 02:59 AM

I’m as north in the state of ny as you can get lol. The woodlot is actually on the Canadian side. I can throw a stone into Canada. The true upstate ny not Albany haha

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BurlyBob

5547 posts in 2288 days


#6 posted 06-08-2018 03:59 AM

I’ve found to be an interesting wood. Very interesting variation in the wood as far as color and grain character. Super hard and will burn if you take you time running it thru the table saw.

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msinc

421 posts in 526 days


#7 posted 06-08-2018 09:19 AM

The price is right for sure. I have a forest of hickory, among other hardwoods, in my back yard and I would pay that for a cut down ready to mill log. As far as milling it goes, I don’t know what kind of saw mill you have, but unless it is a big powerful circular saw mill you are going to want to saw those logs as green as possible, as in right away…as in the day they are cut down if possible and it don’t sound like it is. Hickory gets tougher to mill by the day when the log has been cut. It is really seriously best done as green as you can unless you have a big powerful mill. I would try to find out how long ago the logs were cut down and/or maybe buy one log and try it. If you have a small band mill you might still be okay as long as the blade is good and sharp and you just take your time cutting it up.
Once dry and ready to work hickory is a pretty tough hard wood. Just take your time and it works fine. The only thing I have seen bad about it is that sometimes it will split with the grain. You get something all done, sanded and ready to finish and it will split all the way along the length of the grain. Had that happen a few times. Not real common, but don’t let it surprise you if it does. Good luck.

View Underdog's profile

Underdog

1112 posts in 2058 days


#8 posted 06-08-2018 10:37 AM

It’s prone to lots and lots of movement. Best to get it cut as soon as possible, and dry as slowly and carefully as possible so as to prevent any tension in the wood- Seal end grain, sticker stack, and store in cool dry place.

View John Smith's profile

John Smith

989 posts in 185 days


#9 posted 06-08-2018 01:21 PM

my local Lowe’s store had a model kitchen set up with a light brown marble
countertop and hickory bottom cabinets and it was absolutely GORGEOUS !!!
good luck in your project – hope you can post some photos once you get started
in building something with the wood.


similar to this
.

-- Graduated Valedictorian from the University of HardKnocks --

View splintergroup's profile

splintergroup

2071 posts in 1245 days


#10 posted 06-08-2018 03:39 PM

I love hickory for it’s color and figure, but it is a bit of a bear to work with (hardness, movement, etc.) Of course every wood has its idiosyncrasies.

Locally the price has varied from about $3- $4/bf 4/4 S3S KD. If I had the resources you have (mill and low cost logs), I’d go for it. Air drying is fine, just takes time. You could build a solar kiln for not much and speed the process if you really need to.

View ralbuck's profile

ralbuck

4562 posts in 2289 days


#11 posted 06-08-2018 05:09 PM

GOOD LUCK!

Hickory tests equipment and ww’s patience too!

-- Wood rescue is good for the environment and me! just rjR

View Savage86's profile

Savage86

51 posts in 389 days


#12 posted 06-08-2018 05:22 PM

I really do appreciate all the insights I’ve received. I’ve been doing a lot of reading the past few days on the horror stories of working with hickory. Should be a great learning experience haha. I’ll be sure to post the build pictures as I go once I start. I’m picking up the logs Tuesday morning

View Breeze73's profile

Breeze73

76 posts in 703 days


#13 posted 06-09-2018 08:30 AM

In my experience, working with hickory isn’t that bad. It is hard and a little brittle. The fibers tend to shear (i.e. sharp corners tend to break off easier than other woods). It does burn fairly easy, but so does Cherry. It can be a bear to sand, as does Hard Maple. I consider Hickory to almost be a cross-hybrid between Oak, Maple, and Cherry. The price is great, so you should do well with it!

-- Breeze

View LiveEdge's profile

LiveEdge

585 posts in 1642 days


#14 posted 06-12-2018 05:54 PM

The question will be how much waste. You are paying a cheap price, but you are paying for every single board foot in the log. If you wind up with 50% waste for all the various reasons along the way then you are paying $1.26/bf. Still a good price, but now not quite as good.

Is there any issue with bringing the logs across the border?

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JADobson

1062 posts in 2133 days


#15 posted 06-12-2018 06:51 PM



In my experience, working with hickory isn t that bad. It is hard and a little brittle. The fibers tend to shear (i.e. sharp corners tend to break off easier than other woods). It does burn fairly easy, but so does Cherry. It can be a bear to sand, as does Hard Maple. I consider Hickory to almost be a cross-hybrid between Oak, Maple, and Cherry. The price is great, so you should do well with it!

- Breeze73

+1 – I’ve only used a little hickory – made the grammercy turning saw. I only used handtools and found it to be just fine.

-- No craft is very far from the line beyond which is magic. -- Lord Dunsany — Instagram @grailwoodworks

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