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Burning sugar maple...

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by Swedishchef, Mar 15, 2013.

  1. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    Hey guys

    I was wondering if, when burning sugar maple, you can have a white froth coming from the wood for a few minutes? I currently have some maple in the stove (just put it in) and it is hissing with a white foam coming out the edge. Possible???

    Andrew

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  2. gzecc

    gzecc Minister of Fire

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    Sounds like its not seasoned. How long has it been split and stacked off the ground in single rows? Do you have a moisture meter?
  3. pen

    pen There are some who call me...mod. Staff Member

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    If it's only had one year seasoning on that maple, it may need more. I've found hard maple doesn't dry as fast as ash or beech for me.

    pen
    HDRock and ScotO like this.
  4. Augie

    Augie Feeling the Heat

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    It isnt the wood species that is important but the conditions that it encounters during seasoning. Hell with the right conditions, +100F and 5% relative humidity even oak will season in a few months... but yes it sounds like you have wet wood
    Redlegs likes this.
  5. pen

    pen There are some who call me...mod. Staff Member

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    Exactly. I'm just saying that the conditions that would generally give me reasonably dry ash or beech in about a year, often times aren't enough for the maple.

    pen
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  6. westkywood

    westkywood Feeling the Heat

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    I would think Sugar Maple would take longer to season than any other Maple.
    Woody Stover and ScotO like this.
  7. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    Sugar maple (and most of the norway maple I cut) takes every bit of two years C/S/S to be prime....
    silver and red maple takes a year. And I've had small rounds of sugar maple that were several years cut and stacked (unsplit) that still foamed on the ends briefly when put in the stove. Further proof IMO that wood seasons much better when split....
    pen likes this.
  8. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    Any wood can get frothy if there's too much moisture. The froth is just air and moisture escaping from the wood.

    Try that wood again next year.
    ScotO likes this.
  9. rideau

    rideau Minister of Fire

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    Sugar maple has such a nice colored flame.

    And when cut at this time of year, the stump attracts dozens of varieties of butterfly, which one can enjoy watching while they feed.
    PA. Woodsman likes this.
  10. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    Hrm. Ah well, I guess some of my maple is not dry yet..even if it has been c/s/s for 3 years!?!?!? And the rounds were only 6 inches or so in diameter.

    I will check with a moisture meter this afternoon on the other pieces and let you know..they sounded and looked dry to me!

    Andrew
  11. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Not much need for the MM as you already know it is not dry enough Andrew. Maybe you could boil that sap and get a spoonful of syrup?! I hope you get through this heating season okay. You can always try making sure you have a large coal bed before adding the wood which will help a lot.
    Swedishchef and HDRock like this.
  12. ohlongarm

    ohlongarm Minister of Fire

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    Only if green,other than that sugar maple burns hotter than a scalded dog,good wood Very hot burning when dry.
  13. HDRock

    HDRock Minister of Fire

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    Hissing kinda wet, foaming and hissing real wet
  14. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    Weird. Something must have happened to certain pieces. Obviously what hissed is wet. But I tested other pieces from the same pile and they were 19 percent on the inside.....and some were 28 percent. And yet they are from the same stack!


    Hmmm
  15. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    Thanks Dennis, but I wil pass on trying to get some syrup this year from those splits. Lol.

    Mixed with the other wood after 10 minutes or so the hissing stops...I still have over a cord of mixed wood left and that should easily get me through the rest of winter. I only make one fire a day now....

    Andrew
  16. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    That actually is not surprising Andrew. Shoot, occasionally we get a log or two that is high moisture. I remember burning some 7 year old white ash. The tree was dead when it was cut. Still, 7 years later we got a couple splits that sizzled in the fire!
  17. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    Dennis: glad to see I am not the only one. Kind of weird but there's not much that can be done. perhaps my piles weren't high enough off the ground and the piece may have been sitting on ground, etc??? Or the water gremlins are injecting water into my dry wood again.....

    Andrew
    Backwoods Savage likes this.
  18. gyrfalcon

    gyrfalcon Minister of Fire

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    That's my experience, too. Seems odd because it's such a nice dense wood, but beech dries pretty fast.
  19. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Or coon pee?! ;lol
  20. gyrfalcon

    gyrfalcon Minister of Fire

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    ROTLMAO!!
  21. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    Haha Dennis... No coon pee around here. But I plan on getting yellow birch instead from now on... As pen and falcon mentioned, it dries much faster...
  22. gyrfalcon

    gyrfalcon Minister of Fire

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    Don't think I mentioned it, but I would if I'd thought of it... Yeah, yellow birch is good stuff. It's less common around here than hard maple, obviously, but I'm always happy to have some. If you can get black birch, it's even better, higher BTU and also pretty quick to dry.
    Backwoods Savage likes this.
  23. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    I split a couple of pieces of maple from the same pile and measured the MC. one was 30% and one was 20%. However, I think I found the reason. It seemed the 30% was starting to get punky on the inside. however the piece with 20% was not. Would that "punky factor" hold moisture in the wood for longer?

    ANdrew
  24. Applesister

    Applesister Minister of Fire

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    Andrew you might want to research a thing called "Baterial shake in trees". Its more common in conifers and Oaks but maybe sugar maples. Bacteria causes cell wall breakdown and excessive moisture retention. Basically the wood never dries.
  25. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    Hrm. Thanks Apple. I have never heard of this...perhaps some of the trees I cut were infected with this...I find it odd that wood that has been c/s/s for almost 4 years can have moisture content of 30%.

    It seems that may have been my problem with some of my wood....perhaps it was from the same tree....

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