10+ year old milled black walnut...

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Forum topic by MattyMattAg posted 01-05-2015 03:14 AM 1343 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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38 posts in 1508 days

01-05-2015 03:14 AM

Topic tags/keywords: walnut jointer milling

My father-in-law has had some rough sawn black walnut sitting in his barn for over 10 years. I gave it to me but warned me about jointing it on my jointer. Said because it was dry and fairly old, it could do a number on my cutter head blades.

Is this true? Should I be worried about running those pieces through my jointer?

-- If Jesus was a carpenter, what better profession could there be?

11 replies so far

View Chris208's profile


239 posts in 2294 days

#1 posted 01-05-2015 03:21 AM

Not from the wood. It will be fine unless there are foreign objects in the wood.

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5705 posts in 2838 days

#2 posted 01-05-2015 03:21 AM

Dry and old are fine. Dirty is what nicks blades. Small pieces of dirt and gravel should be swept off the lumber before milling. Most of the lumber I mill was stacked in a shed, barn or shop at one point or another. It has not been a problem for me. I just change the knives on my jointer every thousand b.f. or so.
For my jointer I only paid $16 for new knives.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View ShaneA's profile


6956 posts in 2623 days

#3 posted 01-05-2015 03:22 AM

Shouldn’t be a problem unless it is dirty.

View Buckethead's profile


3194 posts in 1893 days

#4 posted 01-05-2015 03:31 AM

Pics or it didn’t happen.

-- Support woodworking hand models. Buy me a sawstop.

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Craftsman on the lake

2794 posts in 3462 days

#5 posted 01-05-2015 03:44 AM

In 1976 I had a cabinet maker, who took a yearly jaunt south to purchase wood, pick me up eight 4”x6”x8’ quarter sawn Black Walnut pieces to make guitar necks from. I never used them and they’ve been in my attic for nearly 40 years. My wood supplier says that he will be discontinuing Walnut because it is getting hard to get and will be priced prohibitively out of range soon. Should I continue to hold on to this wood? Will it approach the price of gold soon?

Interestingly I also have two sets of guitar backs and sides of Brazilian rosewood from that era. A banned wood these days. Wonder if they will reach the same cost being 40 yrs old and illegal to import. Payed $30 for them back then.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

View mbs's profile


1656 posts in 2965 days

#6 posted 01-05-2015 03:54 AM

I don’t think your wood will be priced that high. having said that, if you’ve kept it for 40 years it probably won’t hurt to keep it another 10 years and see what happens.

-- Sorry the reply is so long. I didn't have time to write a short reply.

View daddywoofdawg's profile


1028 posts in 1600 days

#7 posted 01-05-2015 04:43 AM

Story goes and not sure how true it is,but as hardwood ages it gets harder,I think that might be what he meant.I know some old barnwood is hard as a rock,maybe old growth maybe aging.

View Sandra's profile


7207 posts in 2100 days

#8 posted 01-05-2015 10:09 AM

Most of my hardwood has been bought second hand from people cleaning out houses and/or settling estates.
If you haven’t worked with walnut before, you’re in for a big treat. I absolutely love working with it. I didn’t realize how challenging it was to find until I had used up my stash on drawer fronts for my workbench and some cutting boards.
Some of the walnut I had seemed very old, although I don’t know for sure. I had no problem running it through my planer.

Run it through with shallow passes and you’ll be fine.

Craftsman – I’m just north of Maine. If you want to sell your good-for-nothing, decreasing in value walnut, let me know ;)

-- No, I don't want to buy the pink hammer.

View WDHLT15's profile


1747 posts in 2501 days

#9 posted 01-05-2015 12:41 PM

It will be fine. Clean the boards with a wire brush before planing or jointing.

-- Danny Located in Perry, GA. Forester. Wood-Mizer LT40HD35 Sawmill. Nyle L53 Dehumidification Kiln.

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134 posts in 2685 days

#10 posted 01-05-2015 01:47 PM

I hear ya, I just this weekend started working on a fairly large pile of walnut lumber that has been sitting in my garage stickered for 4 years. It is finally turning into a farm house style table for our kitchen. I literally bought it from the back of a trailer from a member here. I have never dealt with lumber this twisted, checked, or warped before, but the slow process of milling it it revealing some nice looking wood. I like how the air dried walnut looks compared to the kiln dried stuff I have worked with from a lumber yard before.

-- - Dave ; Austin, TX

View Tennessee's profile


2873 posts in 2539 days

#11 posted 01-05-2015 03:01 PM

I have been using 145 year old oak and chestnut on and off in a declining stash I have for almost 15 years now. I am still on the same three sets of jointer blades on the Jet I bought in 2000. I also just about have exhausted a 125 bd. ft. load of unplanned black walnut I got two years ago from a guy who cut the tree down 18 years ago and stuck it in a leanto. Not a problem in any of it on ruining blades, either on my jointer or planer.

As long as the dirt is brushed off, no problems as far as I have ever seen.

-- Tsunami Guitars and Custom Woodworking, Cleveland, TN

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