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Firewood business.

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by sparke, Feb 18, 2009.

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  1. sparke

    sparke Minister of Fire

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    A search did not yield any info. Is there anyone around here in the business? I am self employed and looking for a side-line... I already sell boilers and the firewood business seems like a natural fit. I have been looking into processors. I am not sure I want to jump in that deep right away. The initial investment would be 20K + for a stand alone processor. Of coarse you need a vehicle etc... I currently have saws, splitters, one tractor, and 2 - 4x4 trucks to pull a dump trailer. If anyone is in the business, I am trying to get a feel for the profit potential. I suspect the real profit is in the retail business (small stores that sell it by the package) and not home use. When I crunch the numbers it does not seem very profitable to sell to strictly home owners. I appreciate any feed back you all have on the subject.

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  2. iceman

    iceman Minister of Fire

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    you must be crunching numbers wrong.....
    i have friends who make a killin...
    BUT they do not use processor the use expensive splitters with 4 way wedge.. 2 guys splitting in a day they get bout cord and hr split, spend a couple days splitting couple days delivering... they are now thinking about a small processor 8 years later... but their summer time business is ....... trees.. so they get half of it free
  3. sparke

    sparke Minister of Fire

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    I am assuming one buys hardwood logs. This would be my situation.
  4. kenny chaos

    kenny chaos Minister of Fire

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    I was going to say, you have a list of everything you need except the wood.
    That's the hardest part and getting harder everyday, much harder.

    Hard work, great profit if done right.
  5. NHFarmer

    NHFarmer Feeling the Heat

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    Damn hard way to make a buck
  6. wellbuilt home

    wellbuilt home Minister of Fire

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    You need to get the wood for free . We cut trees and get payed to take it . I want to try to sell 60 cord this year by Sept at 600 a trailer load i don't stack the wood in the trailer just dump it in with a skid when stacked its over 21/2 cord 9000lbs of wood in a 12000lb trailer . I think fuel and up keep will cost 2500 dollars a year. I get tree guys to dump wood off at the house for free when they are in the area or will have them load my truck and trailer on the job . I sell a lot of rounds drooped off at the house for 100 bucks a cord . or 300 a trailer load . good luck john .
  7. mayhem

    mayhem Minister of Fire

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    So CSD wood is about $300 a cord?
  8. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    Not being in the business . . . I'm guessing that a lot of the profit potential would depend on where you are and where your potential clients are . . . and of course where the price of heating oil is heading since that's the predominant heating fuel source here in Maine as you no doubt know.

    For example, folks selling firewood down my way I'm guessing probably do not make as much profit since it's very rural and many folks either own enough land or know folks with land to get the wood on their own . . . or they'll buy the wood tree length and cut it as they go since they have plenty of space to process it on their own. On the otherhand I am guessing that folks in the bigger cities who are buying/have bought woodstoves probably do not have ready access to a woodlot or have space available to process the wood in log form and they would be more likely to buy firewood from a supplier.

    I do know folks in the business . . . mostly as a sideline . . . and none of them are going out of business (to my knowledge only a couple have processors . . . but most have their own woodlots -- some also buy wood in tree length as well) . . . I'm thinking there is a profit here to be made . . . but as to how much, who knows . . . and with unemployment running the way it is right now any Joe Blow with a chainsaw and tractor is trying to make a buck or two right now by selling firewood (I've easily seen two or three posters advertising the fact at the local general stores) so there might be some pretty stiff competition.
  9. sparke

    sparke Minister of Fire

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    Hey Jake, I live in Winslow. The operation would be in Sidney. So I think the location is OK with 3 good sized cities around, Augusta, Waterville, Winslow and outlying areas... I agree with many of your view points. I am on the fence right now. Obviously starting the business with the equipment I have is doable BUT with out a processor the hourly rate would pretty damn slim. Just like NH Farmer said " Damn hard way to make a buck ". So the real questions is can the business sustain a processor and make me money. I hope to talk to a few people in the business soon... My gut feeling is it would work as a long term investment. I think it would take a few years in the biz before you make any "green dollars"...
  10. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    Well hello neighbor . . . well close enough anyways.

    I think you might be right about the location and there possibly being a need . . . I think a lot of whether such a venture will succeed or not will depend on where fuel oil prices go this Summer/Fall and on your access to a good, reliable wood source (either your own or from suppliers with steady prices.)

    Hopefully you will hear from some folks with processors . . . good luck in whatever way this goes.

    Incidentally, you've got a helluva good FD in your town . . . after we had a triple fatal fire several years back (the one where three triplets died and our former fire chief who was running a pumper at a water hole and died from a heart attack) several guys from Winslow showed up the next morning when our guys were at our lowest . . . we had been at this fire all night long, emotions were pretty raw and we had the daunting task of having to clean and reload a heckuva lot of hose ranging from 1 1/2 hose to 6 inch hose . . . and we were just getting started when those guys rolled up in several pick-ups and told us that they would take care of the hose and that we needed a break . . . they took the hose to their own station, cleaned it and dried it for us (this is especially notable since this is probably one of the least favorite tasks you have to do after a fire and they did it without asking for any recognition, compensation or what have you.) Winslow FD will always have my respect.
  11. sparke

    sparke Minister of Fire

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    Thats awesome about the FD!! My taxes are high enough!! :) I do alot of electrical work for Reliance Equipment. I am sure they service your trucks. Small world huh : )
  12. btj1031

    btj1031 New Member

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