SOURCES: Where do you get you salvage wood???

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Forum topic by Milo posted 04-20-2012 02:38 PM 2637 views 2 times favorited 33 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Milo's profile


869 posts in 3524 days

04-20-2012 02:38 PM

Inspired by SalvageCraft

I thought I’d start a thread for people to volunteer sources for were they find salvage wood.

Some sources I know of:

Big Box stores
Lumber Liquidareters
Motorcycle shops (NEW Motorcycles)
Furniture Stores

Anyone else wish to share? ;)

-- Beer, Beer, Thank God for Beer. It's my way of keeping my mind fresh and clear...

33 replies so far

View Brad_Nailor's profile


2539 posts in 4162 days

#1 posted 04-20-2012 02:46 PM

Where I work we get deliveries of large pieces of HVAC equipment, so in turn we have a ton of pallets. I look through the pile often, but most of the wood looks to be really low grade, knotty poplar or pine, with tons of nails and staples. I have seen a few oak pallets come through…somebody said they fished a mahogany pallet out of the pile. I’m sure if anyone wanted to take some they could..but the wood just doesn’t look too worthwhile to me.
You could also try rigging company’s. When the cabinet shop I worked in bought a large CNC router, the rigging company guys were telling us they throw away ridiculous amounts of huge pallets and timbers. The dude told me they installed some huge piece of equipment that came on a train car packed in a huge crate made from 4×4 and 6×6 red oak timbers…some almost 20 feet long! He kept them all and piled them behind their shop, and was offering them free to anyone that wanted to haul them away..


View Durnik150's profile


647 posts in 3527 days

#2 posted 04-20-2012 03:30 PM

I have a friend who runs a tree business. Talk about a racket. He gets paid to cut down trees. He then splits it into firewood and sells it. He gets paid twice!

Anyway, every once in a while he will cut down a walnut tree or a beautiful maple so instead of splitting it into firewood, I pay him firewood cost and haul it away. I still have to mill and resaw all the wood but at least I have it!

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

View abie's profile


878 posts in 3976 days

#3 posted 04-20-2012 03:37 PM

Try wood floor shops, they have samples that they git rid of often.
new styles come in all the time.
Most is hard wood and needs planning to rid it of tongue and grooves.
Also Commercial tree trimmers often are a good source.

-- Bruce. a mind is like a book it is only useful when open.

View chrisstef's profile


17770 posts in 3212 days

#4 posted 04-20-2012 03:40 PM

Demolition contractors. Being in the business myself i always seem to have plenty of reclaimed lumber around.

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

View rance's profile


4266 posts in 3366 days

#5 posted 04-20-2012 04:07 PM

I’ve done pallets, but not so much any more… too much work.

I get new/old flooring from a local flooring company.

I also dumpster dive.

-- Backer boards, stop blocks, build oversized, and never buy a hand plane--

View muleskinner's profile


919 posts in 2642 days

#6 posted 04-20-2012 04:39 PM

I drive by my local Sears every time I go to town so I always glance at their pallet pile. A couple weeks ago I stopped by a garage sale. Wasn’t much there for tools but there was a small stack of wood leaning up in the corner. The gal said “oh, I just want to get rid of that, take what you want”. I got four of the 3×3’s on the right and a dozen of short pieces on top in the pictures. I think the 3×3’s might be teak but I’m willing to be educated. The two pieces of mahogany 1×6 were from bed rails that I gave 3 bucks for at the Goodwill. It ain’t much but it’s pretty slim pickings around here for anything more exotic than red oak. I got about 250-300 bf of that clear tight grain doug fir stuffed up in the rafters. That came from a remodel/demo of a 120 year old building.

-- Visualize whirled peas

View canadianchips's profile


2613 posts in 3202 days

#7 posted 04-20-2012 04:42 PM

Farm Auctions. It seems every farmer has a pile stacked in the barn from 20+ years ago.
I check our Habitat Restore every week.
I have been doing this here for awhile now, SOME people are starting to call me and see if I want it !

-- "My mission in life - make everyone smile !"

View Milo's profile


869 posts in 3524 days

#8 posted 04-21-2012 01:19 AM

I hadn’t thought about hardwood flooring, that’s a great ideas. I’ve got to check out the tree services also.

Brad_nailer. I feel stupid asking, but what’s a rigger? I’ve got sailing stuck in my head, and I know I should know, but I’m senior moment-ing here…

I found a sawmill that will cut 1000 board feet for $200, and another that will cut it for a portion of the wood. Find the right tree and I’m golden!

-- Beer, Beer, Thank God for Beer. It's my way of keeping my mind fresh and clear...

View Dallas's profile


3599 posts in 2692 days

#9 posted 04-21-2012 01:31 AM

I mill most of my own from dead trees on our property.
Then, since we are in an oil/gas area, some of the rig workers will ask if I want the dunnage that comes with well casing. Some of that stuff is 18” thick and 8’ 6” long.
I’ve seen white oak, poplar, walnut, Doug Fir, SYP, and lots of other stuff I don’t know the names of.
This summer I plan to get my boss to let me build a shed to store all the lumber in.

-- Improvise.... Adapt...... Overcome!

View Tenfingers58's profile


96 posts in 2883 days

#10 posted 04-21-2012 03:02 AM

Riggers are the guys that get called to load/unload/place machinery at factories/construction sites etc. Usually with cranes or big towmotors.

View doughan's profile


96 posts in 2796 days

#11 posted 04-21-2012 04:27 AM

brad nailer….when you get a windfall profit of some lumber someone gives you do you send in some tax money to the governmen to cover your capital gains….or is that just for millionaire republican businessmen?

i get some nice lumber when replacing old entry doors by dismantling the old doors then use it to build new ones….no brad i don’t claim it

View Brad_Nailor's profile


2539 posts in 4162 days

#12 posted 04-21-2012 05:09 AM

Sorry Milo..I guess I should have been more specific! Tenfingers is right, they are guys that specialize in moving and installing large, heavy pieces of equipment. The piece they installed for us was a huge CNC router, with two tool turrets, and a bed capable of handling a 10 foot sheet of plywood. I never collected on any of those oak beams..although I wanted to..I had dreams of building a post and beam shop out of them!

Durnik reminded me..A younger cousin of mine who is in the landscaping and tree removal business was telling me at Christmas he just struck a deal with a friend who owns a portable saw mill. He will garage the mill and provide a generator for it in turn he can use it for free. He was telling me he makes firewood out of tons of Hickory, Maple, Oak, Walnut, Cherry..I almost cried! He wants me to come by and talk to him about milling the good trees into lumber instead of firewood and selling it..I am just thinking how sweet it would be to have access to a mill and enough space to dry lumber. He said he even knows a guy with a kiln..

Listen Doughan…I am done with the political arguments..this is a wood working site and that’s all I care to discuss on here anymore.


View Tyrone D's profile

Tyrone D

314 posts in 2538 days

#13 posted 04-21-2012 05:14 AM

I always check for pallets behind Campion Boats. They always get heavy motors and parts coming in on hardwood pallets. I recently snagged two oak pallets and there was a very nice fir pallet that have 1×6 slats that looked like the stuff you buy at the big box stores.

-- --Tyrone - BC, Canada "Nothing is ever perfect, we just run out of time."

View Milo's profile


869 posts in 3524 days

#14 posted 04-21-2012 10:39 AM

Brad_Nailor, it makes you almost want to invest in a Woodmizer!

-- Beer, Beer, Thank God for Beer. It's my way of keeping my mind fresh and clear...

View RandyM68's profile


693 posts in 2523 days

#15 posted 04-21-2012 11:18 AM

I have several thrift stores within a few miles from my house. I have bought a lot of old solid wood furniture for much less than what the lumber would cost. Entertainment centers with small TV openings, and old desks that weren’t designed for computers, are cheap and easy to find. A lot of times you can get your money’s worth from just the drawer slides and other hardware.My favorite store is only three blocks away. That is where I bought my Delta contractor saw for fifty bucks and find the most good material. Every now and then, they haul out the stuff that hasn’t sold, and give it away. I built most of my shop out of used furniture, for very little money.

-- I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you. I'm sorry,thanks.

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