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Forum topic by m4778 posted 01-06-2021 04:39 AM 339 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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m4778

7 posts in 21 days


01-06-2021 04:39 AM

First post here. Been doing small woodworking projects for years but recently i’ve started to take it more seriously so I figured it’s time to start learning from others.

In the next few days i’m having an arborist look at some trees on my property that I suspect will have to come down. They’re all white oak, maybe 14in – 18in diameter, and I was thinking instead of turning them into fire wood I might be able to get usable lumber out of them that I would eventually like to make into a table.

I have done a lot of reading on moisture content, air drying, etc etc but all the information is a bit overwhelming to say the least. But I guess i’ll figure it out as I go.

Anyway, on to my immediate questions:
  1. When the tree people come to take out the trees, should I request that they leave it cut into a particular size/length? Is this a request they are used to getting?
  2. I’ve read a lot about how as soon as the wood is cut I need to seal the ends to prevent checking. Do I just seal the ends of the full logs? What is the easiest/most available sealant?
  3. Presumably the next step is I need to find a mill or someone with a bandsaw mill to cut the logs into “boards”. What is a typical size that I should request the logs to be cut to?

Any input is much appreciated.


10 replies so far

View WhyMe's profile (online now)

WhyMe

1337 posts in 2537 days


#1 posted 01-06-2021 01:54 PM

I’d mill it up asap into the longest length needed for the table. Then seal the ends until dried. Sticker the rough sawn lumper laying flat. If possible get it quarter sawn. Get length at least 12 inches longer than finished length. Even with sealing the ends you’ll get some splits.

View gdaveg's profile

gdaveg

71 posts in 178 days


#2 posted 01-06-2021 02:15 PM



I d mill it up asap into the longest length needed for the table. Then seal the ends until dried. Sticker the rough sawn lumper laying flat. If possible get it quarter sawn. Get length at least 12 inches longer than finished length. Even with sealing the ends you ll get some splits.

- WhyMe

WhyMe,

Great suggestion to leave ends long for splits that will happen.

Dave

-- Dave, Vancouver, WA

View Ruscal's profile

Ruscal

69 posts in 154 days


#3 posted 01-06-2021 02:17 PM

Seal the log ends with Anchor Seal as soon as possible after cut or at least within 24 hrs. Don’t delay. It’s easier than sealing milled boards anyway.

Length and width would depend on what you want to make out of it. Have it milled at least 1/4 ” thicker than what you need finished.

I cut anything 20 in dia to 12 in dia usually to 8.5 foot. That should leave me with 8 ft boards after some end grain splitting. I use a Granburg chain saw mill and mill the boards myself. I lose a lot to sawdust though with the thick chainsaw kerf, but I just mill a tree here and there and paying someone with a portable mill would be cost prohibitive for me. 10” to 12” dia I cut to about 24-30” length and slab out on my bandsaw. Less than 10 in dia is forest floor litter.

You may be able to pay to get them kiln dried. I air dry and it takes at least a year per inch of thickness. And it takes up a lot of space.

I think it’s really cool to make things out of lumber from my own forest, and the price is right.

Here is a nice Cherry blow down I dragged out of my woods. German Shepherd helped.

-- Have a hobby? You should have a business.

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m4778

7 posts in 21 days


#4 posted 01-06-2021 05:14 PM



I d mill it up asap into the longest length needed for the table. Then seal the ends until dried. Sticker the rough sawn lumper laying flat. If possible get it quarter sawn. Get length at least 12 inches longer than finished length. Even with sealing the ends you ll get some splits.

- WhyMe


Is it an issue if there is a delay between when it’s bucked and when it is milled, as long as I apply the sealant immediately after bucking? I assume it’s just delaying the drying process, but do I risk any defects not getting it milled asap? Since I still don’t have someone lined up to do the mill work I have no idea how long it will take me to get that coordinated.


Seal the log ends with Anchor Seal as soon as possible after cut or at least within 24 hrs. Don t delay. It s easier than sealing milled boards anyway.

Length and width would depend on what you want to make out of it. Have it milled at least 1/4 ” thicker than what you need finished.

I cut anything 20 in dia to 12 in dia usually to 8.5 foot. That should leave me with 8 ft boards after some end grain splitting. I use a Granburg chain saw mill and mill the boards myself. I lose a lot to sawdust though with the thick chainsaw kerf, but I just mill a tree here and there and paying someone with a portable mill would be cost prohibitive for me. 10” to 12” dia I cut to about 24-30” length and slab out on my bandsaw. Less than 10 in dia is forest floor litter.

You may be able to pay to get them kiln dried. I air dry and it takes at least a year per inch of thickness. And it takes up a lot of space.

I think it s really cool to make things out of lumber from my own forest, and the price is right.

Here is a nice Cherry blow down I dragged out of my woods. German Shepherd helped.

- Russell Hayes


Ok that all makes sense thanks, 8.5 ft is probably a safe length. Hopefully i’ll be able to figure out a decent way to roll those logs around. I guess worst case I drag them across the yard with my truck.

View Steve's profile

Steve

2377 posts in 1559 days


#5 posted 01-06-2021 06:26 PM

The longer it sits on the ground, the faster it’s going to rot. I think Woodmizer has a list of people in your area with a mill.

View Ruscal's profile

Ruscal

69 posts in 154 days


#6 posted 01-06-2021 09:46 PM

Chain and a 4wd pickup does it for me. I just pulled couple of 25’ x 30” Ash trunks about 40-50’ out of the woods so I could better get at them for firewood. Better yet if you are in an area that gets hard freezes, that’s the best time so you don’t make a rut. Either way try to drag it so the leading edge is “surfing”, not digging in.

-- Have a hobby? You should have a business.

View m4778's profile

m4778

7 posts in 21 days


#7 posted 01-13-2021 05:19 PM

Well a bit of a frustrating miscommunication between the tree guys and myself resulted in one of my two trees getting chopped up into firewood instead of leaving it in logs, but I partially blame myself for not reiterating to them what I wanted. I assumed they would have read the original work order, but obviously they didn’t. You know what they say about assuming…

Regardless, at least i’ve got one tree to work with!

With the exception of destroying my yard, towing the logs out with my truck went smoothly.

View Ruscal's profile

Ruscal

69 posts in 154 days


#8 posted 01-13-2021 09:08 PM

Mini chainsaw mill $100. 20” chainsaw – should have one anyway with all those trees! Oak boards – free! You only need a professional tree guy when the tree is eminently going to fall on your house. Plus its cool when they drop and the ground shakes.

-- Have a hobby? You should have a business.

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m4778

7 posts in 21 days


#9 posted 01-13-2021 10:36 PM

Yea I do have a 14” chainsaw for firewood and stuff. I was thinking about one of those chainsaw mills but I just recently learned after asking around that one of my coworkers has a full portable saw mill that can do up to 24” and 16’ logs.

But yea I would have given it a shot taking these down myself but they are both within 15’ of the house and leaning directly over top of the roof.

View Customwood's profile

Customwood

1 post in 9 days


#10 posted 01-17-2021 11:05 PM

Find some one with portable band mill,it won’t cost that much $ .22 bf

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