Ever done anything this nuts, just to get wood?

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Forum topic by Tennessee posted 04-13-2012 05:17 PM 2156 views 0 times favorited 26 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Tennessee's profile


2873 posts in 2540 days

04-13-2012 05:17 PM

Topic tags/keywords: humor

Last weekend, my wife and I were on the way to Lowes to get some of our spring plants to put around the house. Driving down the road at about 45 MPH, I spot a large pile of what is obviously a freshly cut tree, waiting for the city to pick it up. As I go past, it dawns on me that the wood is not the usual oak or maple, but dark walnut with significant sapwood, providing a beautiful contast.
Sccreeeech! I tell my wife as I do a U-turn in the middle of the road, “That was walnut!!”
We pull up, no place to park, so I kind of gently pull up on the lawn and confirm, this is great looking walnut, lots of branches coming out of certain places, (sure to provide some interesting grain). We look at this pile, (I am 62, my wife 60), and we wonder how much we can stuff in the back of our 10 year old Surburban.

I go knock on the door, and a very old lady answers. I ask if we can take some, and she looks me over, and says “Why sure, if you can pick it!”

We manage to get four pieces, each about 48” long, some as wide as 18” in diameter, into the truck. Both our backs and my arthritic shoulder are screaming. My wife gamely says, “If you want to take this home and come back for more…” I don’t think so.
Go shopping for flowers as planned…
Get home, break out the chain saw, long cut four planks from one log, (very wasteful, I know, and hard as hell on chains), put one through my planer and set all the rest with the planed one in my wood storage room to dry. The wood is absolutely gorgeous. I estimate the tree was about 50-60 years old.
I got some walnut, and man, did it cost me some Advil!!

-- Tsunami Guitars and Custom Woodworking, Cleveland, TN

26 replies so far

View Durnik150's profile


647 posts in 3347 days

#1 posted 04-13-2012 07:43 PM

I had a friend of mine call up and tell me that he had a walnut tree in his trailer that he was going to turn into firewood. GASP! I went over to his place, relocated all the wood that looked usable into my truck and paid him the price he would have asked for firewood. Lots of 36-48 inch sections that are easily 16-20 inches across.

Not free but darn near. It is amazing the lengths we will go to in order to rescue wood so we can chop it up in our shops. Of course now there is a bunch of walnut logs lying in my back yard. Haven’t gotten to processing it yet.

Well done Paul!

-- Behind the Bark is a lot of Heartwood----Charles, Centennial, CO

View dhazelton's profile


2771 posts in 2322 days

#2 posted 04-13-2012 08:01 PM

I took down two dead cherries and a walnut that was threatening to fall and rip up my paved driveway. Saved some bowl blanks from the larger cherry and had about 8 feet of the walnut milled by a friend. Not a lot of heartwood in it sadly, and I had to spend a few hours labor at the mill for the favor. I hate throwing that stuff in the woodstove too.
God bless you and your wife for lifting what has to be a 250 or 300 lb log into a truck. You owe your wife a dinner out.

View bruc101's profile


1200 posts in 3567 days

#3 posted 04-13-2012 08:02 PM

There “ain’t nothing wrong” when a wood artist can reclaim beautiful “wood art” about to be hauled off to the dump or used for firewood and make beautiful “artistic museum quality stuffs’ with it.

-- Bruce Free Plans

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 3262 days

#4 posted 04-13-2012 08:06 PM

It’s not nuts at all. It’s WALNUT! LOL Yes, of course I’ve stopped at the curb and picked up logs. And will the next time I see one…

-- Hal, Tennessee

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3141 days

#5 posted 04-13-2012 08:17 PM

why do you think my physiotherapist can afford hollydays seven times a year
on seven stars hotels ….. too many of us does it …. I gess :-(

anyway … nice score :-)


View David Craig's profile

David Craig

2137 posts in 3134 days

#6 posted 04-13-2012 08:22 PM

Paul, I have dumpster dived, looked through city dump sites, and followed trim crews through town to get lumber. If that is the craziest you ever get, you should be so lucky :)

Hope you sealed the ends. Would be a shame if that stuff splits on you.

Congrats on your haul,


-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


18288 posts in 3701 days

#7 posted 04-13-2012 08:44 PM

I do crazy stuff like that ;-)) Even have a hand crank winch on my 5th wheel hitch to pull up stuff too heavy to lift.

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


18288 posts in 3701 days

#8 posted 04-13-2012 08:52 PM

Just remembered the time I spotted a road kill skunk. It didn’t smell too bad so I decided to just get the tail to try fly tying. I put it in a plastic bag and got it home. It got a little worse in the bag, but not bad. I laid it out to dry on a shelf in the basement. It was Sunday night. Monday went I got home from work, guess what greeted me at the door! ;-(( My wife didn’t notice as it was very faint and being there all day it didn’t bother her. I buried that flying tying material within the next few minutes and left the basement open to air out for a few days ;-))

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View robbiethewood's profile


124 posts in 2270 days

#9 posted 04-13-2012 09:02 PM

the best things in life are free
seal them ends up
nice score


View sandhill's profile


2128 posts in 3949 days

#10 posted 04-13-2012 09:19 PM Mine was all ready cut.

View derosa's profile


1577 posts in 2861 days

#11 posted 04-13-2012 09:34 PM

Seems reasonable to me but I’m still young enough to not suffer too badly for doing that solo when I see wood lying about. Just dragged 4 small trunks out of an orchard to prevent them from becoming firewood.

-- --Rev. Russ in NY-- A posse ad esse

View MrRon's profile


4795 posts in 3269 days

#12 posted 04-13-2012 11:11 PM

Been there, done that. I’ts amazing what you can find in dumpsters, back alleys and landfills. I still have about 30 knock-down kitchen cabinets, tools, artificial Christmas trees, etc rescued from a landfill after Katrina. I even got some unopened bottles of Johnnie Walker from a casino destroyed by Katrina. Businesses, like Lowes, Home Depot, Sears, etc dumped everything in the landfill, damaged or not. Insurance paid them off. I come across Oak all the time, but never Walnut. That was a nice find.

View Roger's profile


20929 posts in 2829 days

#13 posted 04-13-2012 11:24 PM

very gr8 story, and awesome wood booty! you were in the right place at the right time, and ya gotta act when that moment arrives. look forward to seein what comes outta that old and beautiful Walnut

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View RussellAP's profile


3104 posts in 2312 days

#14 posted 04-14-2012 01:27 AM

The guy I get my wood from has a walnut sitting in his yard, cut into at least 10 foot sections that must be about 6 foot in diameter. It’s very hollow inside and contains a bee hive which he plans to let sit till next winter so he can get honey from it. Personally I think the raccoon’s will be the lucky ones here. The crotch on this tree is going to be amazing. I hope to get a couple slabs of it if he’ll slice it a couple inches thick.

I love walnut but my tools are groaning.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

View MoshupTrail's profile


304 posts in 2506 days

#15 posted 04-14-2012 01:49 AM

I would have done exactly the same thing. It’s not crazy. It’s what we do!

-- Some problems are best solved with an optimistic approach. Optimism shines a light on alternatives that are otherwise not visible.

showing 1 through 15 of 26 replies

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