Tough Decision!!

  • Advertise with us

« back to Sweating for Bucks Through Woodworking forum

Forum topic by JJackson posted 06-01-2008 01:52 PM 1203 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View JJackson's profile


104 posts in 4045 days

06-01-2008 01:52 PM

Good Morning All,

I have just come across the largest cherry log I have ever seen. The tree is still standing and I have been given permission to cut it down and take it for free! The log is 36” diameter and runs up straight and true up till 60’ without any branches or defects. Its definately a veneer log. Indiana is the veneer capital of the world and I would have no problem selling it to a mill. Although, I could mill it myself on my woodmizer and have beautiful boards for a long time. But selling the log to a veneer mill would yield about $3000 which would go a long way to making improvements in my woodshop (cabinets, etc). What do you guys think?? This is a once in a lifetime find and I don’t want to make a bad decision. There are so many cool things I could do with this log. Flitch cut it in 6/4 and have matched boards, etc… What do you girls and boys think?


-- Jeff, Indiana

8 replies so far

View brunob's profile


2277 posts in 4132 days

#1 posted 06-01-2008 01:58 PM

You can always outfit you shop but a tree like this is a once in a lifetime find. Keep it. My $.02.

-- Bruce from Central New, if you'll pardon me, I have some sawdust to make.

View BrianM's profile


116 posts in 3715 days

#2 posted 06-01-2008 02:44 PM

Flitch it!

Take the math out a few steps. What’s the total board feet of heartwood? Must be over 1000 and at about 7 bucks a bf (more with flitch) I’m thinking there is an additional 4 grand for shop projects. Another option is to turn that into furniture over the years and save a picture of the tree before you cut it. How many people get a piece of furniture with a picture of the tree it came from?

Of course, there is always reality and if you need the $$$ now then sell it. If not, remember wood like that is like wine….the longer it sits, the more it will be worth. So much wood and so many options…. I guess nothing is really free. :))

-- There is no such thing as scrap wood!,

View SteveKorz's profile


2134 posts in 3677 days

#3 posted 06-01-2008 03:04 PM

That is a tough one… I think I would saw it and keep it. You can always sell furniture from it, or sell the boards once they are sawn or milled, and use that money to help outfit your shop. At least give yourself the chance to work with some of it. You could create many interesting things. However, like BrianM said… then there is always reality. I don’t know if you have the space to store that kind of wood, or the $$ to mill it… He’s right tho, the longer it sits the more it’s worth.

-- As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. (Proverbs 27:17) †

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 3785 days

#4 posted 06-01-2008 04:00 PM

Keep it and flitch cut it.

I had a large cherry that died taken out several years ago that went into firewood because I could not find anyone to mill it. I still feel the pain from that one.

The money from the veneer sale will be gone quickly. But you could always sell either your excess lumber to offset this or sell some of the projects that you make from the lumber.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View John Gray's profile

John Gray

2370 posts in 3848 days

#5 posted 06-01-2008 04:43 PM

Keep it for sure. Have it milled, you can always sell the boards. The wood will make some beautiful projects.

-- Only the Shadow knows....................

View TreeBones's profile


1827 posts in 3986 days

#6 posted 06-01-2008 04:53 PM

I would keep it myself. If the wolf is at the doorstep today the 3,000 may be good right away but in the long run the finished products you could make and sell would probably be greater than the instant cash. Wish we had cherry’s around here.

-- Ron, Twain Harte, Ca. Portable on site Sawmill Service

View Dusty56's profile


11819 posts in 3651 days

#7 posted 06-01-2008 05:22 PM

my own choice would be to KEEP IT !!!! YOU ALREADY HAVE THE WOODMIZER…put it to work for yourself because you’ll never find this chance again : ) $3000 is nothing compared with the potential gold mine you have waiting for you .

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View David Freed's profile

David Freed

113 posts in 3630 days

#8 posted 06-01-2008 07:44 PM

I know lumber prices are down right now, but I am pretty sure you have more than $3,000 worth of lumber ( 2-3,000 bf x wholesale market price, which is closer to $2/bf green) and I also think you might be way off on what the veneer price would be. I am not an expert on veneer, and I also don’t know your background, but most of the time the veneer buyers are only interested in the butt log; usually 10’ to 16’. If that is the case, you could sell one log for veneer and still have a lot left for lumber. In much more rare cases the tree will be veneer quality for 40’ to 50’ from the base. If it is a veneer log of this quality, and being as big as you said, you could be looking at $10,000 to $20,000 or more. I wouldn’t saw it, or cut it in lengths until you find out for sure what you have. Fifteen years ago, I saw a veneer buyer pay $9,000 for a 41’ walnut that was only 22” at the base.

-- David, Southern Indiana

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics