Using Firewood for Lumber

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Forum topic by seabiscuit posted 11-04-2011 10:52 PM 5757 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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95 posts in 2446 days

11-04-2011 10:52 PM

I live in a part of the US that loves to give away free firewood from various types of tree (oak, maple, cottonwood, etc). Do any of you guys ever pick this stuff up, resaw it and then use it for lumber? Is it worth it or even usable in most cases?

8 replies so far

View Sawkerf's profile


1730 posts in 3090 days

#1 posted 11-04-2011 11:35 PM

Might be worth it if you’re ok with short, small, pieces of wood.

-- Adversity doesn't build reveals it.

View Don W's profile

Don W

18754 posts in 2589 days

#2 posted 11-04-2011 11:54 PM

I’ve used firewood to make hand planes, chisel handles, mallets and business card holders. I burn firewood as well, so the left overs go into the stove.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View CampD's profile


1673 posts in 3508 days

#3 posted 11-05-2011 12:02 AM

Yup ya never know what you might find buried in the firewood pile.

-- Doug...

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

4947 posts in 3982 days

#4 posted 11-05-2011 12:14 AM

Just gotta remember that a lot of the wood is green and must be dried/cured. Rough cut it, seal the cut ends, and forget abouit it for 1 year per inch of thickness before ya try to use it for anything that will require stability. Also, some of it will be junk no matter what ya do with it. How do I know??


View willie's profile


534 posts in 2476 days

#5 posted 11-05-2011 03:46 AM

It seems the most popular things everybody want me to make are picture frames. It always seemed to be such a waste of wood and a time consuming project. Over the years I have refined my process to be less work and less money for materials. I started making a basic frame out of pine, maple, plywood or whatever was handy, and free. I just used butt joints and scewed the corners together. Then I found all the veneer I could ever want in the firewood pile. I resawed strips to 1/4” thick and cleaned up to 1/8” or less. I’m still amazed at the unbelievable pieces I am finding, lots of crotch grain, quarter sawn, spalted, and more species of wood than I’ve seen commercially available. Since I cut my own firewood, if it’s something unique or special, I cut some of it speciifically for veneers. Nothing goes to waste!

-- Every day above ground is a good day!!!

View tomd's profile


2155 posts in 3792 days

#6 posted 11-05-2011 04:27 AM

I make small items so I bandsaw alot of firewood into short boards.

-- Tom D

View marcbousquet's profile


18 posts in 2437 days

#7 posted 11-13-2011 07:37 AM

I raid my father’s fire wood stock sometimes for pieces that have alot of character in them. I also will cruise around the area after storms looking for fallen trees people have cut up but not disposed of yet. Same also goes for the town/state cutting trees after storms, like the one a couple weeks ago up here in western MA. Alot of nice old trees got ripped right out of the ground or flattened. Most of the wood I saw up gets dried and milled for future use in small projects like pens.

View Greg's profile


330 posts in 2895 days

#8 posted 11-13-2011 07:53 AM

Do iT! I find some amazing wood in the firewood lot of a local f/w retailer. Carolina Cherry burls, curly eucalyptus, curly ash, carob, etc. Here is a link to

Here is carob from a firewood lot (pink wood)
Sierra Nets,hand made net,trout net,custom net,wood landing net,Carob,Wenge,Maple,landing Net More carob.
Carob,wenge,curly maple,business card case,business card holder,wooden case,wooden business card holder,wooden business card case,wood case,business card carrying cae,men's gifts,gifts for business men

Curly ash

Carolina Cherry Burl handle.

See!? Diamonds in the rough, but for smallish project no doubt.

-- You don't have a custom made heirloom fly fishing Net?

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