A little over a week ago, one of our Bradford Pear trees decided to spontaneously bifurcate (it split right down the middle). This is apparently a common thing for Bradford Pear trees to do, although I really can’t figure out why they would want to kill off a portion of themselves.
There’s a great blog over here that does a great job of describing why Bradford Pears split so easily. A contributing factor is the fast-growing soft wood, which makes them about as appealing to use for woodwork as a pine stud.
My wife & I spent a week pulling down dozens of small branches that were so soft I could break them by hand. But when we finally got down to the main trunk of the tree, I happened across old, dense, and heavy wood! I tried to save as much of this as I could, and so now I have a log about 3 feet in length and 18-20 inches in diameter. I want to make something from it. I don’t know what yet, but it will be something special.
One of my coworkers has a portable lumber mill at home, and I’m going to ask him to saw the log into as many 1” thick slabs as he can. I have no idea how much lumber to expect from it, or how it will dry, or even if it’ll be usable wood! But it’ll be a fun experiment, I think.
Do any of you have experience cutting and drying your own wood? Is there things I should watch for, or things I should do to increase my chances of having usable wood? Thanks in advance for your help! And stay tuned for updates.
-- ~ Dan, North Carolina, http://www.facebook.com/torahanjyuu/