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Burning Pine - First Impressions

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by jwoair23, Nov 30, 2012.

  1. jwoair23

    jwoair23 Burning Hunk

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2011
    Messages:
    234
    Loc:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Today was an exciting day (for a dorky woodburner). I got to have my first experience burning pine! I have to admit despite reading everything I have always been nervous to try it. So this year around April, I picked up 4-5 four foot logs of pine that I knew had been cut and dead for about 3 years (laying in a parking lot nearby where I live). I c/s/s stacked it in April, and just gave a try of burning it today since its pretty warm here right now.

    I am impressed! Mind you this pine is about as dry as a 1,000 year timber beam at this point, but it is burning really clean, and is actually HOT! Obviously its not going to burn as long as the other woods, but I am really surprised at the heat just one or two pieces are throwing off all by themselves. My window is not dirty, and I'm not getting smoke, so I have to think its probably burning pretty clean? I don't have much of it so I'm not too worried regardless, but thats my impression.

    Just thought I would jot down my observations, as long as its dry, seems to throw off some short but very hot heat!

    EDIT: Also have to say, its not sparking bad at all, I thought I read throwing sparks was a big problem with pine, but it doesn't seem to be popping/sparking much? Maybe just because its so dry though!
    ScotO, Bacffin, Curly and 2 others like this.

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  2. Stegman

    Stegman Feeling the Heat

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    Loc:
    Sterling, MA
    I don't burn pine but generally felt that concerns about it making more creosote were a bunch of malarkey. From what I've read on here, it's what folks out west pretty much have to burn due to a lack of hardwoods. As long as it's seasoned it should be fine.

    I actually scrounged a truckload of side-of-the-road pine a few weeks back after the hurricane. Looks like it was standing dead for some time. Going to buck it and split it up small and use it for kindling next year.
    Curly likes this.
  3. Trundle

    Trundle Member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2011
    Messages:
    88
    Loc:
    Western MT
    Nothing wrong at all with dry pine. Here in NW Montana Lodgepole pine is the standard fuel for most woodburners. Ponderosa pine is looked down upon but I've burned plenty of it with no ill effect. Whatever keeps you warm!
    ScotO and Curly like this.
  4. BoilerMan

    BoilerMan Minister of Fire

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    Apr 16, 2012
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    1,579
    Loc:
    Northern Maine
    There is alot of heat in pine, and it does come out of it FAST! Actually pine has slightly more BTU's per pound (dry) as most hardwoods, this is due to the high pitch content in the pine.

    TS
  5. eclecticcottage

    eclecticcottage Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2011
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    1,699
    Loc:
    WNY
    We burned some year old CSS scotch pine that was standing dead when cut last year a week ago. Made for some beautiful secondaries and nice heat.
  6. woodchip

    woodchip Minister of Fire

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    1,389
    Loc:
    Broadstone England
    The trick is to become an expert at burning what you have available...;)
    ScotO, Bacffin, TimJ and 4 others like this.
  7. woodchip

    woodchip Minister of Fire

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    Broadstone England
    I'm pleased I read that as we've been offered a load of Scots pine, looking forward to getting it css over the weekend!
    ScotO likes this.
  8. Trundle

    Trundle Member

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    Loc:
    Western MT
    Well put.
  9. SmokeyCity

    SmokeyCity Feeling the Heat

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    Mar 6, 2011
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    Loc:
    Western Pa
    Pine is AWESOME as long as you burn it bone dry.

  10. Snotrocket

    Snotrocket Burning Hunk

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2011
    Messages:
    196
    Loc:
    Maine
    I have a couple cords of pine laying around and love it.

    The best thing about it is after dealing with oak it's light as a feather.
  11. Kenster

    Kenster Minister of Fire

    Joined:
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    1,593
    Loc:
    Texas- West of Houston
    I scrounged about a 1/3 cord of down and dead pine from the front yard of a neighbor last year. It had been down in their yard for about a year and who knows how long it had been standing dead. I got it bucked and split and stacked. Extremely dry. I mix it with my oak for a quick start. Get the fire going real hot real fast. I have no need to burn a whole load of pine, but from what I see, dry pine is fine.
  12. bboulier

    bboulier Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2010
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    441
    Loc:
    NE Virginia
    Thanks to the good advice of folks in this forum, I now scrounge pine as well as hardwoods. Burns great when dry and mixed with other woods. Also makes excellent kindling.
  13. JOHN BOY

    JOHN BOY Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2012
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    Loc:
    Western Mountains ,NC
    Pine also makes for a quick hot fire. I love to mix it with hardwoods.:)
  14. Seanm

    Seanm Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2012
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    376
    Loc:
    SE BC Canadian Rockies
    We have enough beatle kill lodgepole pine here that it makes sense to burn it, not only that but our forests here are mostly made up of pine with some larch, fir, a bit of cedar and the odd birch (plus lots of cr_p cotton wood).When you can get it free 5 minutes from home why not? I love how easy it splits! Its not to heavy when aged and smells great! Ive found it interesting that if you go to the btu charts you will notice that not all species of pine are created equal when it comes to burning. Im pleased to see so many folks on this forum having positive experiences with seasoned pine.
  15. Dune

    Dune Minister of Fire

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    Loc:
    Commonwealth Of Massachussetts
    Y'all are letting the cat out of the bag here...
    PapaDave likes this.
  16. Curly

    Curly New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    Messages:
    41
    Loc:
    Wilmington, DE
    Hmm, so basically all the people telling me that burning pine is bad are full of it. What ever kind of wood it is, you can burn it as long as it's seasoned well. Except for the poison varieties which I wouldn't be touching in the first place.
    milleo likes this.
  17. f3cbboy

    f3cbboy Feeling the Heat

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    Jan 19, 2009
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    Loc:
    rockland county, NY
    Any wood as long as it is seasoned. all wood needs to be dry.
    PapaDave likes this.
  18. Dune

    Dune Minister of Fire

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    I have found that willow is not worth the effort, though some here will burn even that. Others complain about cottonwood and alder (?) being too low in BTUs to bother with.

    Poplar as well is often knocked, but I will gladly accept a load of poplar. Like pine, hot and fast.

    I burn whatever softwood is delivered to my house, free, but I do have favorites. I like the eastern pine, spruces and firs much more than the knotty or pitch pine. They dry faster and don't soak up water again after drying as readily as the knotty pine. Despite my personal preferences
    knotty pine comprises most of my softwood stacks. In my situation, the knotty pine needs two years seasoning (minimum)
    whereas the other conifers season well within a year after cut/split/stack.

    How I deal with knotty pine; Buck and stack on pallets horizontal for a year. Split and stack for additional 2 years.
    The preliminary drying of the rounds can be avoided by using a splitter but for hand splitting, dryer (for pitch pine) works better.
    Curly likes this.
  19. Bacffin

    Bacffin Minister of Fire

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    30 Miles Northwest of Boston
  20. onetracker

    onetracker Minister of Fire

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    rondout valley ny
    a bonified pine convert right here.:cool:

    i've got YEARS worth laying around here that will be my shoulder season wood for a while. no more burning seasoned hardwood in sep/oct or march/april.

    but hey, how about hand-splitting big pine rounds when its green? that'll put some hair on your chest.
    ScotO likes this.
  21. swagler85

    swagler85 Minister of Fire

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    1,195
    Loc:
    NE Ohio
    What I see with pine is the people that say it can't be burned are people that dont burn and just have an opinion base on what someone else told them. But they will argue until blue in the face.
    onetracker and ScotO like this.
  22. tcassavaugh

    tcassavaugh Minister of Fire

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    Loc:
    Southern Maryland
    i have a brother that owns about 65 acres in upstate new york that has a lot of white pine, hemlock and a few broad leafs. It was logged years ago and is starting some good regrowth. My other brother and i hunt the property every deer season. He has been thinning out the dead and diseased or downed beach oak and maple and I mentioned to him that he might consider using some of the downed or dying evergreens as fuel also. He burns wood also and I chuckled to his response that it would "produce a lot of creosote" and pointed out that it would work fine if he made sure it was seasoned just like the other wood he uses. While i doubt he'll use it as some habits and impressions are hard to overcome, he did acknowledge that I was probably right when I pointed out how our northwestern and brethren to the north don't have many broad leafs available.

    cass
  23. Lumber-Jack

    Lumber-Jack Minister of Fire

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    That's right. It's a little known fact that Lodgepole pine meets or exceeds many hardwoods in terms of BTU content, and the fact that you can cut much of the standing dead beetle-kill stuff around here that is already well seasoned is huge plus for me. Given the choice of dry seasoned Lodgepole pine over some species of (slightly) higher content hardwood that I have to wait 2 years to burn, I'll take pine every time, thank you.
    f3cbboy likes this.
  24. gmule

    gmule Feeling the Heat

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    Feb 9, 2011
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    453
    Loc:
    Conifer Colorado
    Pine burns great. Any one want to trade some hardwoods for some pine?

    [​IMG]
    Curly likes this.
  25. Bacffin

    Bacffin Minister of Fire

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    Loc:
    30 Miles Northwest of Boston
    Careful All...you are becoming Pine-O-Holics :)

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