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Logs In Brush Dump About a Year . Usable For Lumber ? (Pics)

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Forum topic by RonInOhio posted 12-02-2012 08:09 PM 803 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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RonInOhio

720 posts in 1529 days


12-02-2012 08:09 PM

There is a brush/leaves/tree limb dump not far from where I live. About a year ago some large oak trees were sawed down and there are a lot of logs of varying sizes down there . They have been exposed for about a year I would say.
I think I can get permission to take some of them as they are just going to rot.

Question: Will the wood be ok for projects if taken into a shelter and dried out ? There are all different sizes of logs. Some big enough for table tops ! I only took a brief look but it looks like its all Oak.


14 replies so far

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Dallas

2966 posts in 1152 days


#1 posted 12-02-2012 08:33 PM

Short answer: It depends.

Depends on why the tree was cut in the first place, such as disease, insect infestation, storm damage, etc.

Depends on how you are going to mill it. A portable band saw mill would be the best, but many of them won’t touch city trees because the blades cost over $100 each and it only takes one 100 year old nail to lose a blade.

Depends on if you want to do the wood yourself. Want to buy a Chainsaw mill and slab it up yourself? That’s a pretty good chunk of money….. I have about $500 into my chainsaw mill and I still want more.
It’s also very labor intensive. A 10’ long X 40” tree can take you 10 hours to prepare and slab up. You’ll also need to learn to sharpen your own chains because in 10 hours you’ll go through 2-4 chains, unless you hit a nail or spike, then it might be a half dozen chains.
I never use a power sharpener. I use a hand filer and get my 93 link chains done in about 20 minutes. But that adds more time to your cutting time.
I sharpen every chain I’ve used that day at home when I get done for the day. another couple of hours before Miller time!

I wouldn’t consider storing logs in a building, but that may just be me. It will take YEARS to dry them and even if you treat the ends, there will be a lot of lumber lost due to cracking.

There’s more, but my fingers are tired.

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

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RonInOhio

720 posts in 1529 days


#2 posted 12-02-2012 09:03 PM

Well that is a little discouraging. The logs don’t seem to be very long. I was thinking some could be sized down with a chainsaw or split.

I appreciate the feedback from someone who apparently knows what they are talking about.

So the best way to dry them would be to just keep the rain and dew off them and let them slowly dry for a few years ? Bark on or off ? I suppose that is something I will have to do some research on.

I think there are a few of the smaller ones I may tackle on my own. I know a few guys who removed these trees maybe I can get them to slab off a few pieces of the larger diameter logs.

Thanks again.

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teejk

1215 posts in 1350 days


#3 posted 12-02-2012 09:23 PM

I always cry when I see logs like those laying to waste. Centers look solid and they appear to be straight. A lot of nice things can come from stuff like that…maybe not big things but things you can point at and say you made it from scratch…I’ll see if I can log into my photo-bucket and will post a pix of desk-top “valets” that I made from an old cherry beam.

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Don W

15057 posts in 1233 days


#4 posted 12-02-2012 09:41 PM

I disagree with some of the above statements. If they are oak, they are probably good (if they were good when they were dumped). Bandsaw blades for my bandsaw mill are about $15 each, so I’ll saw anything I find.

This has been down for close to a year, and although some of it was hollow, I go a lot of nice lumber out of it. There were branches that have been down for a long time and I got some lumber from that as well.

So I agree it does depend, but you should be able to cut one end of the log and tell.

I will say though, in the picture it looks like it was cut up into short lengths, anything less than 4 or 5 foot would need to be sawn on a bandsaw, something that short will be a pain with a saw mill.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.com

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RonInOhio

720 posts in 1529 days


#5 posted 12-02-2012 09:47 PM

Post those valets right in this thread if you want. Would love to see them.

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Dusty56

11660 posts in 2353 days


#6 posted 12-02-2012 09:51 PM

DonW , I was also going to mention the length of the wood , and the price of the blades seems a bit high. I know my friend doesn’t pay that much for his blades , but…..I was lucky that my Oak stump was six feet long so he could cut it on his mill : )
Before I invested any time or money into it , I would make sure that it was Oak. Doesn’t appear to be in the photos of the chunks on top of the heap. If it’s been cut and drying for a year or more , chances are the wood has shrunk enough that the bark won’t stay on it once you start moving it around.

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

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RonInOhio

720 posts in 1529 days


#7 posted 12-02-2012 10:01 PM

I walked up and looked this morning before i had my camera. Looked liked tight grained oak. Maybe tomorrow I will get some good close up pics and post them. Getting kind of dark now.

Thanks for all the replies.

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a1Jim

112152 posts in 2242 days


#8 posted 12-02-2012 10:02 PM

Certainly other that have mills might be more qualified to answer your question ,but I know that at least some of the wood should be in good enough shape to be used. Another option is to split the logs for easier transport and storage. Splitting logs has been done for hundreds of years long before the invention of the chain saw. Splitting is hard work but cost effective and if split to the right size you may be able to mill the wood on a fair sized band saw.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

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Dallas

2966 posts in 1152 days


#9 posted 12-02-2012 10:10 PM

Don, You are in New York, (I think), and I am in Texas, (so my wife informs me). When we were in Ohio we were working on a lot of equipment staying at the jobsite.
Nearby was some cleared land that had been cleared about a year or a year and a half before.
Lot’s of oak, Hickory, Walnut, Elm and other stuff but all of it was infested with insects and the birds were having a field day with it.

Oh, yeah, my purchase price on the blades was a bit too high at purchase, it’s closer to 35ยข/inch, but when you figure shut down and replacement time, the cost is going to mount by leaps and bounds.
Some mills don’t charge that cost, but others do, especially if they know these are yard trees.

Dusty, I didn’t mean to try to discourage you, just to give you an over all view of what you might be getting in to.

We have a lot of dead trees here, and I’m slowly harvesting them as I can. Most were killed by our 5 years of drought, bad enough by itself, but it allowed the insects to attack. We were losing a tree every time the wind got over 20 mph, some were well over 140 years old.
I bought my mill and a chainsaw I could afford and started harvesting.
Lot’s of the wood is infested with grubs, worms, bugs, etc. I will not put it in a building that will have other lumber in it.
I’m working on a solar kiln right now, but most of this might be lost if I can’t get it dried.

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

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teejk

1215 posts in 1350 days


#10 posted 12-02-2012 10:22 PM

Here you go Ron (I think)...Hughes.net seems to be goofy today. If it goes through, be more than happy to share the construction details

View Don W's profile

Don W

15057 posts in 1233 days


#11 posted 12-02-2012 10:22 PM

I would say the second picture is all pine, but the first picture has what could be a chunk of white oak and a chunk of hickory.

It only cost me about $7 to get my blades sharpened and a nail dulls them but it usually doesn’t ruin them. I find more bullets than nails. I can easily change my blade in 10 minutes. I would certainly ask about it if hiring someone.

Dallas, I am in NY.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.com

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Monte Pittman

14335 posts in 1003 days


#12 posted 12-02-2012 11:14 PM

If it’s solid woodor marginal rot I take them. Keep in mind however, I can saw and dry them. I rarely turn down wood.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it.

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Bagtown

1712 posts in 2395 days


#13 posted 12-02-2012 11:39 PM

There’s more to wood than square boards and furniture folks.
Me? I’d jump all over this wood and do projects like this;
Click for details

-- Mike - In Fort McMurray Alberta

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RonInOhio

720 posts in 1529 days


#14 posted 12-02-2012 11:59 PM

Isn’t there a quote button in these text editors ? Not seeing one.

Anyway, that is pretty awesome stuff Bagtown. One of the ideas I had was to possibly make a rustic bench out one of the logs. Split it, smooth the top and use smaller logs for the legs. Something for the grill/patio area.

As well , lots of smaller stuff. Turnings , etc. I’m pretty excited about having access to that much potential wood for nothing but some sweat. Guess we will see.

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