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Burning Cedar

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by woodburn, Dec 28, 2008.

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  1. woodburn

    woodburn Member

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    Anyone here burn cedar? A friend just had trees taken down and said I can have the wood. I know what I've read about cedar- lots of explosions, wild flames, great smell, ........ but I like to here from actuall folks who have burned it in a stove. How are the coaling abilities? Is it worth taking?

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  2. Techstuf

    Techstuf New Member

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    I burn it on occasion. Got some in there now, in fact. I only burn it well seasoned, and even then, I burn it with a seasoned hardwood like Elm. It's energy return is low and it's usually a slow burner. I don't burn mine in rounds. Splits and the smaller the better.


    TS
  3. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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    I like it for starting the fire. There is nothing wrong with burning it.

    Matt
  4. bsimon

    bsimon New Member

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    You said free, right?

    I split it into kindling & small pieces for getting fires going.
  5. myzamboni

    myzamboni Minister of Fire

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    I find it is easy to process. I love the aroma. It burns fast but I still like it and think its worth it.
  6. RedRanger

    RedRanger New Member

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    I love that western red cedar so much that I bought 5 cords of mill ends.

    Enough kindling for years to come, and enough hot fires from the not split stuff for years to come.

    And just like those "rice crispies" lots of snap,crackle and pop. And the aroma is kinda sweet to boot!!
  7. Bigg_Redd

    Bigg_Redd Minister of Fire

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    Western Red Cedar burns hot and fast and I have a pile set aside for kindling. I would burn it but it's not my first choice.
  8. flyingcow

    flyingcow Minister of Fire

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    I've got about a 1/2 cord for kindling. i wouldn't pass up free stuff.
  9. Lanningjw

    Lanningjw Feeling the Heat

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    I took down a Cedar last spring in my yard. The old guy down the street told me not to burn it in the stove becuase the sap would clog up my chimney. He said to take of the bark before I used it.
    Is this a myth or is there some truth to what he said?
    Jim
  10. flyingcow

    flyingcow Minister of Fire

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    We have white cedar here, I've never heard of it having sap, or anything noticeable. Same with the bark, maybe you have a different species of cedar.
  11. Lanningjw

    Lanningjw Feeling the Heat

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  12. madrone

    madrone Minister of Fire

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    Not true. Removing bark just helps it dry faster. Don't burn it green, and you won't clog your chimney. It's immoral not to burn free wood.
  13. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa Minister of Fire

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    It might sound like I'm stating the obvious but all live trees have sap. It is their life blood. Once properly seasoned, it is fine. Splits nice and makes good starter wood and kin'lin.
  14. flyingcow

    flyingcow Minister of Fire

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    Yup, thats the same stuff I use. Great kindlin'. Seasons/dries quickly, hot quick fire.
  15. woodburn

    woodburn Member

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    Thanks for the replies. Sounds like it's definitely worth taking. I think I will use it as many suggested for kindling and startup pieces.
  16. Rockey

    Rockey Minister of Fire

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    I too am guilty of burning one of the most beautiful species to ever grow - western redcedar. I prefer to build outdoor furniture withit but the scrap pieces have to go somewhere. Here is a product of fine WRC and hard work:

    Attached Files:

  17. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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    Rocky,

    How do you keep those miters tight with an outside table?

    Matt
  18. Pagey

    Pagey Minister of Fire

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    Let me be clear: that is a damned fine looking table, sir! NICE.
  19. Rockey

    Rockey Minister of Fire

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    Each table was hand crafted and of course each plank had to be air dried to about 12% mc. Using pocket joinery and dowels I had good success with keeping the miters tight year after year. It was a huge undertaking building each table with the four benches. The final touch was 3 coats of Sikkens Cetol 1 - a truly unmatched finish.
  20. Rockey

    Rockey Minister of Fire

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    Thanks :)
  21. Cedrusdeodara

    Cedrusdeodara Member

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    We are probably not talking about the same trees here. There are actually no TRUE cedars in Northern America. There are a variety of conifers called "cedars" by their common name, but none of them are actually really cedars.

    Eastern Red Cedar: it is a Juniper (Juniperus virginiana), it is likely the tree being asked about here in the post, as it is very prevalent here in the East coast. Very prickly to the touch with nice blue berries in the winter. Common along coastal areas.

    Wester Red Cedar: It is an Arborvitae (Thuja plicata), commonly used for hedges and also used extensively for lumber (i.e. building decks, tables, etc.). Rather soft to the touch and a bit pungent when crushed.

    Northern White Cedar: It too is an arbovitea (THuja occidentalis) and it is common as an ornamental hedge tree. Soft to the touch.

    Atlantic White Cedar (also Southern White Cedar, Swamp Cedar, or White Cedar): It is a Chamaecyparis or false cyparis (Chamaecyparis thyoides). Very prevalent in swampy areas of the east coast. A bit prickly to the touch. Can grow in standing water.

    What we here on the east coast might call red cedar or white cedar might be a completely different beast to those in the midwest.

    By the way, real Cedars are in the genus Cedrus (my avitar name is cedrus deodara, or Deodara Cedar). There are 4 species of real cedars and they are all native to Europe and Asia. They are Cedrus deodara (Deodara Cedar), Cedrus atlantica (Atlas Cedar), Cedrus libanii (Cedar of Lebanon), and Cedrus brevifolia (actually a subspecies of libanii). Many true cedars are growing here in the US, but they are generally named varieties of ornamental trees purchased from nurseries for the landscape (ie. Cedrus atlantica 'Glauca', Cedrus atlantica 'Glauce Pendula', Cedrus deodara 'Aurea', Cedrus libanii 'Glauce Pendula', Cedrus libanii 'Stenecoma', etc. etc).

    Hope this helps and doesn't just confuse.
    Brian

    Napoleon 1402
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    case of Miller Lite for fuel
  22. Beanscoot

    Beanscoot Member

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    Here on the Wet Coast we also have "yellow cedar". I am burning some now, from old power poles. It is denser than red cedar and has almost a "carroty" smell. It burns very well.
    I occasionally get bits of Deodara cedar which is a good firewood too. All these cedars are very nice to have stacked on the porch due to their fine smells.
  23. Mesquite

    Mesquite Member

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    I have a lot of old western red cedar fence posts that have been taken out. Some probably approaching 100 years old. They are DRY and I cut them up and burn them. Just have to look out for staples but other than that they work fine.
  24. GaryS

    GaryS Member

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    I guess in the midwest we must have eastern red cedar (Juniperus virginiana ). They're used mostly for fence posts and sold to make animal bedding. They're also used to make cedar chests closet liners. They're very sticky when cut so yes, they have more sap than most trees. I know of no one around here that actually uses them for firewood. I guess hardwood is too plentiful.
  25. Mesquite

    Mesquite Member

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    We have a lot of oak as well as mesquite for hardwoods down here. I guess I just hate to pile those old posts up and torch them. Since we don't have the extreme cold that others have, they heat quite well in my stove and they smell good too!
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