The ugly side of urban logging... This is why yard logs are not worth buying.

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Blog entry by HalDougherty posted 08-01-2012 12:12 AM 5255 reads 1 time favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Here is what you get in a lot of yard trees. The owner always swears nobody every put any metal in my trees… Yea right….

The screw driver in this slab has 8 inches of surface exposed. The blade just missed it…. Hitting that would have made my metal detector go off… Each time it goes off it costs me $25.00 for a new blade. This cherry tree is a nice average size tree and the screwdriver was in the center at the first crotch.

I didn’t saw this log. I traded a couple of gunstock blanks for several nice cherry slabs. There’s some other metal hiding in the slabs somewhere. You can see black stains on several places at the butt end of the log. I’m going to cut out parts for some Maloof style low back dining chairs from this cherry log.

-- Hal, Tennessee

15 comments so far

View WoodJediNTraining's profile


409 posts in 3749 days

#1 posted 08-01-2012 12:18 AM

Hal that is one thing Robert Ross always is concerned about when I bring a tree for him to mill. The last tree I bought him had 5 nails in it and they were in the center (various places) of the 32 inch wide x 8 foot log.. I had to replace 2 of his blades which amounted to payiing a blade replacement fee along with the milling fee

-- Newbie, aka Wood_Jedi,

View Joe Lyddon's profile

Joe Lyddon

10961 posts in 5108 days

#2 posted 08-01-2012 12:24 AM

Way back when, he probably placed his screwdriver in the crotch of the tree and forgot about it…
... if you showed it to him, he would probably say “I wondered where that screwdriver went!”... LOL

Sure glad you caught it without damage being done!
That would have been a little scary…

-- Have Fun! Joe Lyddon - Alta Loma, CA USA - Home: ... My Small Gallery:

View Roger's profile


21054 posts in 3860 days

#3 posted 08-01-2012 12:25 AM

Wow. Why would anyone, well, nevermind…

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed. [email protected]

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 4293 days

#4 posted 08-01-2012 12:31 AM

I’ve got an old rusty logging chain that I found inside a log… how it got in there I’ll never know. The tree service guys hit it with a chainsaw while they were bucking the logs into sections short enough to haul. I got the chain and passed on the log… That wasn’t all the metal in it. I cut out the chain and I put it back to work.

-- Hal, Tennessee

View Don W's profile

Don W

19993 posts in 3624 days

#5 posted 08-01-2012 12:36 AM

This came out of my yard, so I knew better. As much as I’d wanted some birch lumber….....

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View jaykaypur's profile


4017 posts in 3464 days

#6 posted 08-01-2012 12:39 AM

Just a touch this way or that and you’d have had some firewoks in addition to the metal detector “alarm” going off!

-- Use it up, Wear it out --------------- Make it do, Or do without!

View Charlie's profile


5 posts in 3181 days

#7 posted 08-01-2012 12:49 AM

I’ve seen this many times. Always in the back of my mind.

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

26080 posts in 4161 days

#8 posted 08-01-2012 12:58 AM

Hal. I know what you mean. I helped my friend take a bunch of logs that were on his place ( which used to be a campground). All these trees were by the road- you now what that means- signs nailed on and nails never taken out. I had to buy the sawyer one new blade and we cut around all the others!!...............Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View bowtie's profile


990 posts in 3402 days

#9 posted 08-01-2012 01:31 AM

Now thats lucky! I sawed into 2 nails in a nice cedar from a local pasture, what a sick feeling. I guess thats part of it though.

-- bowtie,.....jus passin thru....

View thebigvise's profile


191 posts in 3957 days

#10 posted 08-01-2012 01:47 AM

Wow! Thanks for the visually unmistakable warning to us all.

-- Paul, Clinton, NC

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30612 posts in 3394 days

#11 posted 08-01-2012 03:06 AM

Grew up on the farm. Old farmers are notorious for using trees to nail fence to. I never take the bottom 4-6 feet for that reason.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View rilanda's profile


174 posts in 3211 days

#12 posted 08-01-2012 07:13 AM

When I first started in the wood trade as an apprentice I worked at the conversion end of the wood mill (the company produced telephone switchboards). I was not unusual to find large chunks of shrapnel in logs particularly Beech that had come from the Black Forest in Germany. We were only re-sawing the wood and preparing it for the kilns using circular saws; when one of these pieces hit that saw blade it raised some sparks and jiggered the bade up, re-sharpening was my job!

-- Bill, Nottingham. Remember its not waiting for the storm to end, but learning to dance in the rain that counts. If you dont make mistakes, you make nothing at all.

View rustfever's profile


800 posts in 4366 days

#13 posted 08-02-2012 02:31 AM

Once found a plow share that had been left in the crotch of a black walnut tree about 50 or 75 years before. About 30-40#. And the sparks flew, the saw blade coughed up a number of carbide teeth. Still was a good deal. The Walnut was beautiful and I sold several pieces for a great deal more than the cost of sawing and repair of the 60” round blade’s carbide teeth.

-- Rustfever, Central California

View grizzman's profile


7836 posts in 4359 days

#14 posted 08-05-2012 03:26 PM

YEP, every time i take a tree to my sawyer, the question comes, where did you get that tree, and of coarse they use a metal detector and so far i have not had to pay for any blades…...this last June – July Ive gotten these woods added to my store, Dog wood, Mimosa wood,Oak and Cherry…..would enjoy seeing your saw in operation Hal…

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View Post_Oakie's profile


84 posts in 3209 days

#15 posted 08-10-2012 08:56 PM

Worst I ever cut into was a walnut log that was hollow… and filled with cement. Made quite a racket and destroyed the blade, of course. Part of the business. Norwood’s cobaltized blades do a good job cutting through wires and nails. I cut through nearly 50 strands of wire in this walnut log with no problem…

until I hit this anchor bolt.

-- Good judgement comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgement.

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