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Can this Happen?

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by bcnu, Dec 12, 2008.

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  1. bcnu

    bcnu New Member

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    "As a cord of rounds is split, it expands in volume. Thus, you get more wood when you receive it in round form because this expansion hasn't yet fully taken place."

    This was in a Craigslist add for wood. Do rounds really expand?

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  2. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    Well, kinda. If you take a round of wood, there is no dead airspace. When you split that round into say 6 pieces and stack it, you have just introduced dead space (area between the stacked splits). So yeah, kinda, a cord does expand.
  3. FN_9

    FN_9 New Member

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    Partially true - split wood will have a larger volume due to airspace inbetween the splits resulting from stacking. There are conversion ratios for solid wood the split cord amounts. However, I believe that this really just works for solid logs. Sounds like this guy already cut into rounds, so this conversion is pretty much lost. You might get a small amount of additional volume, but I wouldn't count on it.


    Maybe he has some magical beans too.

    I would offer him $20 to watch him split it all by hand if you could watch it "grow"
  4. fossil

    fossil Accidental Moderator Staff Member

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    Right. Keep splitting it smaller and smaller and ever smaller, and you'll approach infinite cords. Rick
  5. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    If you keep splitting it smaller, the dead airspace gets smaller until it can't get any smaller and then turns into a black hole. Then the whole darn mess just disappears. ;-P
  6. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa Minister of Fire

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    The difference in split versus round depends on the size of the rounds and the variety of sizes. Small logs fill in the gaps between big logs. It also depends on the lengths both before and after bucking. Buying wood in 8 foot lengths usually nets you more wood than buying it tree length because the crooks create more air space. Of course it also depends on how well it is laid up on the truck and how crooked the wood is.
  7. edthedawg

    edthedawg Minister of Fire

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    I couldn't resist....

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  8. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    It also depends upon how good of a stacker of wood that you are!
  9. Corey

    Corey Minister of Fire

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    Then don't forget, the wood also shrinks once it's been seasoned. So you may start with fairly dense rounds, split it and get more volume, then it shrinks when seasoned and the volume shrinks too. I have seen numbers of around 5-6% shrinkage in some instances. It's definitely noticeable as I stack my wood ~ 6 feet high, so as a whole, the pile can shrink 4-6 inches. At first I thought the neighbor might be skimming wood off the top, but I made a point to put several unique pieces on top of the pile and they are still there.

    6% of a 128 cubic foot cord is over 7-1/2 cubic feet, which could easily be several wheelbarrow loads of wood.
  10. Cory92

    Cory92 New Member

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    Here's the best equation to figure this out.

    Craigslist + theory x Ycubed - E=Mc2 (H2O/to fourth power of Beer)= Someone trying to put one over on you.
    The round doesn't magically birth more wood as you split it. The total mass or weight will still be the same.
  11. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa Minister of Fire

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    They're smarter than you know... taking from the bottom. %-P

    Actually, there is quite a bit of shrinkage. I stack my wood row 9 feet high, right tight to the rafters and am amazed how much gap forms, and this after the wood sat out all summer.

    That example drawing with all identical splits is not representative of most wood piles. I usually mix up my sizes so I have a lot fewer gaps.
  12. Brian VT

    Brian VT Minister of Fire

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    ...plus he stacked some with the bark side down. lol !
  13. bcnu

    bcnu New Member

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    I was pretty sure it was too good to be true, but it's a kick to read your replies. Besides, I thought the only way to increase the volume/size of a round is to leave it in the ground and call it a tree. ;-)
  14. cityevader

    cityevader New Member

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    The "theory" is partly true....definitely true if you have a load of large rounds with smaller rounds filling up space in between. Without the smaller rounds, it's darn close, but could still be more.

    Try this...get a round that fits neatly into a 5gallon bucket, split it up, and see how many pieces are left over that doesn't fit back into the bucket.

    Go on, try it!
  15. mike1234

    mike1234 New Member

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    was the "crooked" referenced above about the wood or the wood dealer? :cheese:
  16. Bigg_Redd

    Bigg_Redd Minister of Fire

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    I've always believed this based on the fact that even the most careful stacking cannot make up for the splitting.
  17. DAKSY

    DAKSY Patriot Guard Rider Staff Member

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    <>The total mass or weight will still be the same.<>

    Uhhh...NOT! The split wood will dry & the mass or weight will be reduced by the corresponding weight of the evaporated moisture...
    The VOLUME of wood should be the same, however (I think??!)
  18. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa Minister of Fire

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    Again, it depends on how the wood is delivered and measured in the first place. One time long ago, my usual supplier of 8 foot cord wood couldn't come through for me and I ordered a truckload from another guy. It was crooked tree length Birch and when the guy showed up with it, I knew I was getting a raw deal. It measured out to the number of cords on the truck but once bucked, split, and stacked, it had shrunk considerably.
  19. cityevader

    cityevader New Member

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    Definitely a load of twisted trunks or branches will never lay flat enough, and vastly increase airspace from the get-go.
  20. wccountryboy

    wccountryboy New Member

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    Along the same lines, for the purposes of mesuring by volume, what is an acceptable amount of voids for split wood? The reason I ask, I got in a pinch and ordered 1/2 cord from a local supplier. He showed up with a Chevy S10, neatly loaded to the bedrails. No way its 1/2 cord. I told him so imediatly. I told him I was expecting 64 cu/ft of wood, and would pay him accordingly by volume. He started to unload and "log cabin" stack the wood- 2 splits about 12-14" apart, then 2 more on top of them, and so on. Needless to say, I ran him off my place, with his wood. Is there such a thing as an honest woodseller?
  21. fossil

    fossil Accidental Moderator Staff Member

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    It's not a precise measurement. As we've danced around in this thread, a lot depends on the straightness of the wood and how small it's split. A cord is 128 cubic feet of "neatly stacked" wood. The airspace could be anywhere from maybe 15% to 30%, depending on the characteristics of the wood. Your guy didn't understand, obviously, and I figure he tried to deliver you roughly 3/8 cord, at best. Yes, there are honest wood sellers. I have four different ones I deal with without hesitation. I've dealt with a few others who will never hear from me again. Rick
  22. Dustin

    Dustin Feeling the Heat

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    are you from Portland, Oregon? Thats funny, i saw the same ad this morning on Portland CL this morning..
  23. wccountryboy

    wccountryboy New Member

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    Thanks, 15-30% gives me an idea of what right looks like. The guy who came here didn't have an issue understanding, he was a crook, flat out. If he had 1/4 cord in that little truck Id be suprised.
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