Bloggin' about loggin'

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Blog entry by TopamaxSurvivor posted 11-28-2010 08:30 AM 6005 reads 0 times favorited 19 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Here are a few pics of the maple and alder collecting I did last fall and late summer out at the tree farm.

A few whacks with the maul on a couple of wedges turns this

into these ;-))

This double grab hook comes in real handy

Easy to open when it gets bound up too tight :-))

Handy for lifting logs too

The Tree Farm is on the far end of the low hill in the foreground. It is just about dead center in the picture where the darkest green gets a bit lighter for the next hill beyond the gully.

Looks like rain commin’, again ;-)) Guess we’d better quit :-((

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

19 comments so far

View Dez's profile


1176 posts in 5574 days

#1 posted 11-28-2010 10:15 AM

Looks like you had fun in the beautiful countryside!

-- Folly ever comes cloaked in opportunity!

View Marc5's profile


304 posts in 4839 days

#2 posted 11-28-2010 11:49 AM

Your log farm is in a beautiful area and by the size of the logs you are pulling out rather large. My log farm consists of 2 river birch’s, 1 maple & 2 pine trees all located in the back 200 ft. I have log farm envy!

-- Marc

View Jamie Speirs's profile

Jamie Speirs

4168 posts in 4353 days

#3 posted 11-28-2010 11:54 AM

Now that is a nice log.
So satisfying working straight from the log.
Great Log Blog, looking forward to the log’s progress.


-- Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

View stefang's profile


17040 posts in 4831 days

#4 posted 11-28-2010 01:02 PM

Impressive log Bob. I especially like that you simply split it. I have done this many times (though not as large a one as yours there) and it is amazingly easy. I love Alder, it is very nice to carve and has a rich color. The only kind I have used is called Svart Or (Black Alder) here in Norway. The Black Alder wood has a very orange color when exposed to the air, but it finishes with a rich reddish brown. I think the other Alder is called Gray Alder. Do you have similar names or more than one variety of them there? My DIL’s uncle still has family furniture from the turn of the century made by his great grand uncle of Alder and all with hand carved doors. I hope we eventually see some projects from you using this wood. That sure is a beautiful area where you live.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


24948 posts in 5173 days

#5 posted 11-28-2010 02:09 PM

The Tree Farm was selectively logged in 93 before we bought it. There are a few big maples left. They are dying. Foresters seem top think it has something to do with Mt St Helens volcano ash changing the chemistry of the soil. It is only affecting older trees. The young ‘uns that sprouted have the ash fall seem to be OK. Since it is a local problem or phenomena, there is no money to study it. Mostly, they say to grow conifers, but the alder is worth more ;-)) at least now. Maple has to go 80 miles to the mill and isn’t worth hauling that far.

Our alder is red alder. I have some blocks laying around that I was going to carve, but they are a couple of years old now. I may saw a few of them into box wood.

The reason I split them was to make them easier to handle. Plus, the logs seem to have a natural check through them when they hit the ground. Maybe while they are standing?? Who knows? It is hard to tell what the center looks like before it hits ;-)) I thought I may as well take advantage of that natural split to start the cutting process rather than have it intersecting my lumber cuts. I had one small log about 14” in diameter that made a 1/4 twist in about 6 or 7 feet!!

Water World; aka, Western WA is certainly a beautiful place.

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


24948 posts in 5173 days

#6 posted 11-28-2010 02:14 PM

Forgot to say i painted teh ends a coouple of coats and the are “seasoning” until we go back out next spring. This winter I want to try to bare root transplant some alder that is probably 5 years old into some bare spots. Anybody know if that will work?

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View patron's profile


13722 posts in 4838 days

#7 posted 11-28-2010 02:35 PM

nice wood there bob

while the log is drying

please send tractor
i’ll get the wood later

you lucky log dog

beautiful country

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View rivergirl's profile


3201 posts in 4335 days

#8 posted 11-28-2010 02:53 PM

Nice haul Bob. Good thing about being a log farmer is no stalls to clean and no hay to bale. :)

-- Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 4363 days

#9 posted 11-28-2010 03:14 PM

Man oh man, Bob. You sure do live in beautiful country. That’s a nice haul you’ve got. I’ll bet you’ve taken those grand kids on more rides on that tractor than you can shake a stick at. :) I really enjoyed this blog and you should post about these things more often. :)

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View GMman's profile


3902 posts in 5194 days

#10 posted 11-28-2010 03:39 PM

Nice log, you split it on site with a wedge it must be very soft wood?

View StumpyNubs's profile


7854 posts in 4297 days

#11 posted 11-28-2010 04:14 PM

WHAT A RELIEF! When i saw the title of this blog I expected it was about the new workshop bathroom!

-- Subscribe to "Stumpy Nubs Woodworking Journal"- One of the crafts' most unique publications:

View Karson's profile


35301 posts in 5897 days

#12 posted 11-28-2010 04:58 PM

Some great looking country. Nice log that you you dragged in. Now if you could teach some cats to do that.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia [email protected]

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 4612 days

#13 posted 11-28-2010 05:18 PM

niiiceee log and thank´s for sharing the picture of your land :-)
realy liked the way you ended the blog nicew tuch of humor

about replant bushes and tree´s here is some link to show you how
sorry they are in Danish but use a translater and if there is sometrhing you
want to ask about you know were I´m …right here
the first link its just a short vidioclip that you might find the mashine interressting
the company can with that move tree´s with up to 6 inches diameter

this is from another site its more a how to site in the garden etc.

another from that site

beside the undercuting of the root it can be nessery to trim the top
(done many times depending of the tree sice and crown of the tree)

one thing you shuold be aware of is that you need alot of water once a week the first year
again depending of tree sice becourse of the undercuting of the root where you have cut
alot of the rootnet of you have to help the tree (remember a tree has a rootnet that match the crown)

hope this can help and inspire some to move tree´s to new place´s nomatter if its for bare spots
or rescure a tree of different reasons

take care

View Div's profile


1653 posts in 4437 days

#14 posted 11-28-2010 09:04 PM

How do you keep those chains and hooks so new and shiny? Mine are all rusty and dirty and horrible! ;^(

Man, I would just love to saw some of your timber!

-- Div @ the bottom end of Africa. "A woodworker's sharpest tool should be his mind."

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


24948 posts in 5173 days

#15 posted 11-28-2010 09:23 PM

Glad you all are enjoying it. Wish I had more to post :-))

Thanks Dennis, I didn’t think of trimming the top back, that is a great idea. Water wil be an issue if we have a dry spell. There is no water up on the Tree Farm. If it is like lst year, it should be wet enough for all but 2 or 3 weeks in Aug.

rivergirl, I like the change, I have done enough of those, plus milking 2×7/365!! Being raised that way, I didn’t know any better, but i do now :-))

Grandma and the moms get a little skittish with kids and the tractor, but they have been up in the bucket. I took my kids to one of my jobs I had a bunch of man lifts on and let them play on them up to 25-30 feet in the air (with me on board, of course). OSHA, insurance companies and property owners would crap their pants today!! :-((

On splitting, It is big leaf maple, not as hard as sugar maple, but still a hard wood. Red Alder is for that matter, too. I just start a wedge into the natural check through the pith just off center, a few whacks with a 12 # maul and I add a second wedge on the other side of the pith, a few more whacks and I add an extra wide wedge about 2 ½ inches thick between them. It is not tapered the full length like most splitting wedges. I am only splitting 6 to usually about 8’ long. Some times that will pretty much take the log full length and sometimes I have to whack a few wedges in from the sides. Once in a while the split will cross through the grain and I have to poke my chain saw in to cut off the splinters holding the 2 sides together.

BTW, that log in the pictures is big leaf maple. I have an alder seasoning that is almost that same size.

That log was about 25 feet long lying over a bank. I couldn’t move it with the tractor. Cut off 8 feet and still couldn’t move it. I wrapped the chain around it so the tractor pulling would roll it up onto the logging road. Once it was up there, it pulled just fine. I use the 3 point hitch to lift the end when dragging. That keeps it from getting gravel imbedded in the wood and keeps my chain for wearing through in nothing flat!!

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

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