This week in urban logging #11: Fruits of my labor

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Blog entry by Daren Nelson posted 11-20-2008 01:27 AM 4358 reads 0 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 10: Busy week...and it's only Monday Part 11 of This week in urban logging series Part 12: It's been awhile since my last report (but I came back with pictures) »

I showed a pile of walnut logs in my last blog. Now I will show the pile of lumber that came from it. This is the FAS pile. I have another pile that is lower grade. There is 750 bft of just gorgeous lumber here, almost “perfect”. 8”-12” wide and 8’-10’ long boards.

I grade sawed all this out. I am not exaggerating when I say if I cut all the “defect” (any small knots or sapwood) out of this whole pile it would all fit in a 5 gallon bucket !!

12 comments so far

View teenagewoodworker's profile


2727 posts in 4277 days

#1 posted 11-20-2008 01:35 AM

wow thats some beautiful walnut! i so wish i lived closer to you. you’ve got some beautiful lumber!

View SteveKorz's profile


2139 posts in 4223 days

#2 posted 11-20-2008 02:00 AM

Wow… ok Daren… I keep saying that I need to pay you a visit… those pics are pretty tempting

-- As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. (Proverbs 27:17) †

View Daren Nelson's profile

Daren Nelson

767 posts in 4414 days

#3 posted 11-20-2008 02:23 AM

Come on by Steve, any time…I’ll put you to work stacking lumber, my knees hurt. My dad helps me stack on occasion, I’m not too fond of his method though “one for you/one for me, one for you/one for me…”

View oldskoolmodder's profile


801 posts in 4189 days

#4 posted 11-20-2008 04:10 AM

Oh man! Good thing no one else is here right now, I actually sighed loudly when I saw that beautiful walnut. That’s just gorgeous!

-- Respect your shop tools and they will respect you - Ric

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

4050 posts in 4572 days

#5 posted 11-20-2008 04:53 AM

No sap or wane in sight. Beautiful. As much as I love resawing and dressing out stock, I can see that you have a job that is easy to love, old knees notwithstanding. Thanks for the post Daren.

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over two decades.

View HokieMojo's profile


2104 posts in 4237 days

#6 posted 11-20-2008 07:35 AM

Boy could I screw that up. MAybe its a good thing I don’t live nearby. How many trees was that?

View GuyK's profile


356 posts in 4588 days

#7 posted 11-20-2008 02:06 PM

Now I know, what I want Santa to bring this year. Very nice!!!!!!

-- Guy Kroll

View Daren Nelson's profile

Daren Nelson

767 posts in 4414 days

#8 posted 11-20-2008 02:32 PM

Parts (best parts) of 20 logs HokieMojo. 10 trees, the bottom log and second log. I have more logs to saw from the same load in the last blog, but they are not as high grade and that is what the pile in this blog is all about. I made more lumber from the logs I have sawn it is in another pile, maybe some sapwood/a knot on those boards got them graded out.

When a sawyer is grade sawing he will knock the bark off with a pretty good idea of what is underneath. Once he sees what he has to work with he flips the cant (square chunk) to saw lumber from the best face (side). He tries to avoid knots/defect with his milling techniques…when you square one up and it looks like this it’s going to be an easy day. Not a blemish on the whole thing. The top board off this cant went into the other pile because of the little bit of sapwood, the rest into the FAS pile.

View HokieMojo's profile


2104 posts in 4237 days

#9 posted 11-20-2008 04:00 PM

Thanks for answering the question. That is really cool. I got a piece of 4×10walnut, but there was a split running down it. I bought it anyway because I can’t buy 16/4 lumber near me and I thought the chance to get 4×4 legs out of it might be worth it. That piece is amazing though.

Thanks for the info on how the process works!

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 4331 days

#10 posted 11-20-2008 04:12 PM

Daren, I really enjoy seeing these posts. That is one gorgeous lot of walnut lumber.

Thanks for sharing the pictures.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View FlWoodRat's profile


732 posts in 4418 days

#11 posted 11-21-2008 10:44 AM

This lumber is gorgeous. How long will you air dry it before it’s suitable for working? What’s the going price for this material in your area?

-- I love the smell of sawdust in the morning....

View Daren Nelson's profile

Daren Nelson

767 posts in 4414 days

#12 posted 11-21-2008 02:30 PM

WoodRat, to air dry since I am in Illinois it will take until late next summer. It basically is not drying much right now (18 degrees here this morning, it’s frozen). I milled some walnut last spring that is air dried and was by late September. The old adage a year per 1” is sort of misleading, that is a general rule but it is more per drying season really. I can air dry wood in 100 days in the summer.

Having said that I have a small dehumidification kiln and can take the lumber to 7% in just a couple weeks. I designed/built the kiln myself and it is very gentle on the wood. It never gets above 120 degrees so species like walnut keep their many unique colors. Some people have only seen steamed walnut. They do that to stain the white sapwood the same color as the heartwood…in the process it mutes the color of the heartwood. Some people like the “consistent” color. Personally I think it is a crime against nature and ruins the wood, but hey that’s just me maybe ?

As far as price it should be worth $5 bft as it sets I would think, it’s a nice pile.

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