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How Does a Newbie Find Firewood on Long Island, NY?

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by drewsome, Feb 7, 2010.

  1. drewsome

    drewsome Member

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    I’ve been loving all the great information on these posts, and have decided to get a Jotul 550 Rockland insert. It will be installed in about 2 weeks. Everyone talks about how critical it is to have seasoned, dry wood. Some say it should seasoned a full 2 years. But I have no wood at all. So how does a newbie begin? I don’t wait until 2012 to light my first fire!! I live on Long Island…. does anyone know where to BUY dry seasoned wood? What’s a newbie to do??

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  2. fossil

    fossil Accidental Moderator Staff Member

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    Dunno...it's prob'ly gonna be tough at this point in the burning season. In any case, I added your location to the thread title, because we have a number of Long Islanders here. It's definitely a local thing, as well as a seasonal thing, as well as a perrenial problem for anyone looking for seasoned wood anytime from a firewood seller. Good luck, and welcome to the forums! Rick
  3. PJF1313

    PJF1313 Member

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    Good Luck :exclaim:

    You can try H.D.(eep ship) /Lowes (lousiest), ACE, Tru-Value, Agway, etc. for their "bundles in plastic", but expect to pay both arms and both legs for a night or two.

    There is an AID auto? I think, on the north side of sunrise hwy in the W.Islip area, before 5th ave., that had a few pallets of wrapped wood.

    Get a hold of a few of your local land scrapers and see if they have anything - but it would be for, at least, the '10-11 season.


    If I had anything descant, I would give ya a hand, but my stuff is still kind of wet; but my ASW still burns it - just needs some more baby sitting.
  4. drewsome

    drewsome Member

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    I appreciate your comments. Yeah, I thought about Home Depot and Lowes, but they're charging the equivalent of about $1000/cord if you buy those small bundles. At those prices, I'll save money by continuing to burn natural gas.

    I'm hoping someone from Long Island can recommend a reputable firewood merchant. But it doesn't look good. In fact, when I asked my Jotul dealer about where to get seasoned wood, he starting hemming and hawing, and then I knew I was in trouble. Seems crazy to expect people to buy wood burning stoves, but not be able to use them for a full year.

    BTW, I'm in Nassau county. If anyone has a name/number to recommend, I'd be very appreciative!!
  5. 4cyl2v8

    4cyl2v8 New Member

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    Are you looking for split wood, or do you have the means to buck, transport, and chop logs?

    In my experience your not going to come by much seasoned split wood that someone is looking to give away. Some people are willing to let you either clear downed trees, or will advertise on craigslist when they have wood to get rid of. Most of it is more work than its worth, or the wood is rotten/bug infested. You can try following Asplundh trucks or keep an eye out for people doing tree jobs in your area and try tipping the tree company to drop the wood off at your house.

    ETA: If you purchase a small amount for this year you can start to scrounge for next year. IMHO the thrill of the hunt for firewood is part of the beauty of having a stove. I have seen 1/2 chords for $150 in Suffolk, but am not sure that they are truly "seasoned".
  6. drewsome

    drewsome Member

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    Thanks for the tips, 4cyl2v8! I'm actually in Western Nassau county, close to Queens border. I'm basically a city boy, trying to live a little closer to the land. I don't have the means to do any splitting, nor do I have a pickup for hauling, nor do I have any real property in terms of my own trees. So I was hoping to go the "lazy man's route". I'm more than willing to pay fair market value, so long as I can get decent, seasoned hardwood splits. From what you're saying there isn't much "market" out there, though I can't believe I'm the only person in this predicament. Doesn't this happen to all new wood stove owners?

    Kinda stinks to get a brand new stove, and have to stare at it for 12 months while my green wood ages like fine wine (and my wife complains about all the room it's taking up in the backyard!).

    Guess I'll keep an eye out for Asplundh trucks, but that seems like a real hit or miss proposition. More than likely, I'll be at work while they're in my neighborhood anyway. Oh well.
    OldLumberKid likes this.
  7. hareball

    hareball Member

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    There is a guy from Northern New Jersey that sells pallets of that kiln dried wood. Couple of the members here have bought and like it. It could give you that buffer you'll need to aquire next years wood.
  8. Wood Duck

    Wood Duck Minister of Fire

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    Yeah, it does stink to not have decent wood to burn, and yes, everybody is in the same boat. I don't think you have a lot of good options except buy green wood and season it, or scroung green wood and season it.

    Splitting is something anyone in reasonable health can do with just an inexpensive maul, so don't give up on splitting rounds. You won't get split wood from the tree service, so you'll have to split, but I bet you'll end up enjoying it. I have hauled about 12 or 14 cords of wood in the past year in the back of a Saturn sedan, proving you don't need a truck to haul wood. Most of what you find in the city is going to be small amounts anyway, so a little at a time goes a long way. Cutting wood is another story - it isn't hard to cut a few pieces of wood in to smaller lengths, but if you don't own a chainsaw, you'll need one.

    I think you could burn three or four cords a winter if you're really into it, one or two if you're a casual burner.
    OldLumberKid likes this.
  9. JotulOwner

    JotulOwner Feeling the Heat

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    I would try Jim's Firewood. He is in Huntington and advertises on Craigslist all the time. He operates out of his home where he stacks the wood on pallets and invites anyone to test it with a meter. Go check it out. You have nothing to lose.
  10. drewsome

    drewsome Member

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    Jotul Owner: Thank You! ! I'm going to check Jim's Firewood out. If anyone on this board has used him before, kindly share your experiences. BTW, here's a link to his advertisement, which sounds very promising http://longisland.craigslist.org/for/1582062568.html

    My only other option, albeit a very expensive one, is Long Island Firewood, which charges around $500/cord, but it's kiln dried, so I know it's good to go. But I really don't want to pay that much if possible. Here's their link: http://www.lifirewood.com/long-island-firewood.php

    Thank you everyone else for your thoughtful suggestions. Someday, I hope I can return the favor :)
  11. Doing The Dixie Eyed Hustle

    Doing The Dixie Eyed Hustle Minister of Fire

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    Ditto what Jotul said.

    I've reccommended a few people from his post on Jim, and I think everyone has been happy.

    I'm picturing getting firewood in Queens, and I'm having a hard time with the mental picture ;-)
  12. Wood Duck

    Wood Duck Minister of Fire

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    If you're buying wood for next year, as long as it isn't oak it should be seasoned well no matter what its condition right now. So you really only need a cord or so of wood that is seasoned right now, plus a couple of cords (or maybe three or four) that are waiting for next winter. I wouldn't buy expensive seasoned firewood now for burning next year, unless that is the only game in town.
  13. ggans

    ggans New Member

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    Maybe he lives in Malverne...
  14. drewsome

    drewsome Member

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    One last question: Would I sound like a complete amateur if I asked the firewood guy if he sells kindling too? Do most of them sell kindling? I do need some. Do most people just "make" their own by splitting splits even further?
  15. dafattkidd

    dafattkidd Minister of Fire

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    Man. I'm in a similar situation. I'm in Eastern Long Island. I just had my insert installed 3 weeks ago. I love it!

    But I wish I had known about Jim's Firewood before I went and bought a cord. I called around. The guy I bought from said his wood was seasoned for a year to a year and half. I don't know man- some of it is seasoned, but I think a bunch of it is green. And I had to have the guy come back to cut the splits to stove size. I already have some wood lined up for next year, but I knew I was going to have to take it on the chin for the first season. Good luck with your new insert drewsome. It's a lot of fun.
  16. Wood Duck

    Wood Duck Minister of Fire

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    I think you would sound like an amateur. That's fine, but if you're a reasonably physical capable adult, making kindling should be a breeze. 1. Get a splitting ax (many here love Fiskars, which are sold at sears and many other widespread retailers. Get the 'Splitting Ax' or 'Super Splitter'). 2. Select a piece of Red Maple or Pine that is straight and doesn't have knots (other woods are OK too, pick the ones that split easily. 3. Swing the ax gently at first until your aim is right, then a little harder until you are splitting 4.Try splitting the piece. If it splits nicely, you have the right piece, if it is hard to split, or if the split goes to the side instead of straight through, try another piece. 5. Split the piece into small splits. 6. get another piece and repeat. I hope this doesn't sound hard, because it isn't.
  17. billb3

    billb3 Minister of Fire

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    There must be some landscapers / arborists on long island that have occasion to cut trees.
    They might even have some local solutions.
  18. drewsome

    drewsome Member

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    :eek:hh:
    Wood Duck: great advice on the splitting! Now I know what to tell my kids to get me for Father's Day. One other dumb question if you don't mind: I know people often use a big tree stump to place the wood that's about to be split. But I don't have any stumps -- heck I don't have any trees in my little backyard. So... can I just place the wood on the grass and start splitting from there?
  19. drewsome

    drewsome Member

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    Thanks for the kind words. I've heard a lot of people report similar experiences of buying wood that was supposedly seasoned, but turned out green. At least you've got some good splits, it sounds. I wish you best of luck and enjoyment with your new insert. Next year winter should be even better.

    Yeah, I think I'm going to give Jim's Firewood a try. I haven't ordered from him yet because I figure I should get the insert first, just to make sure there are no problems with the installation. (Also, I don't think the wife would like a full cord sitting in the backyard but no insert to burn any of it). I'll post back and report on my experience with Jim's.
  20. kmmuellr

    kmmuellr New Member

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    I asked the same question earlier this year about having a splitting stump. Before I got a nice, big, solid round I was using a 2'x2' block that I made w/ plywood on the top and bottom, and 4x4's in the middle all screwed together. It worked pretty well until the plywood got too beat up. Definately better than ruining the ground/grass in my backyard.

    A few weeks ago I helped my father-in-law drop a big, dead, standing ash and I cut a big round out of that. That round is now my chopping block.

    Re: kindling: I found a few pallets and cut them up w/ a circular saw. The boards split really easily to smaller pieces if needed. Some I saw sitting by dumpsters, others were gotten by asking in the local hardware store.

    K
  21. maxed_out

    maxed_out New Member

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    Hey I know your area well...we escaped and moved out. You could always hit you local industrial park for some pallets. Theres some threads in the forum on how to cut them up, etc which may be useful. I think the tool of choice is a circular saw. Many pallets are hardwoods and pretty dry.
  22. Wood Duck

    Wood Duck Minister of Fire

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    I don't have stumps either, instead I use a large round as a splitting block, but lots of other people split right on the ground. The ground is a little too soft (except in winter) in my opinion. I also like the round I am splitting to be raised a little. Pick a large diameter but shortish round and use that. You'll find lots of discussions of splitting in the archives here.
  23. gyrfalcon

    gyrfalcon Minister of Fire

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    Even frozen ground isn't really hard enough for splitting, say, rock maple or the like, where you really need to give it a major whack to get it to give. Ask your firewood guy if he's got a good round he can throw in for a splitting platform. I got by my first winter by stacking a couple of large flat rectangular "splits" and using that as a splitting platform.

    Also, get yourself some Supercedar firestarters. Put that into the search box on this site and it should turn up their offer to send a free sample to Hearth.com members. They ship very fast, they starters work great and the price is very good. They're much better than the widely sold and advertised "fatwod."

    Lastly, when your wood is delivered, it's likely to have lots of splitting debris in with it, and those make terrific kindling. If the wood is truly dry, you won't really need much. I've been burning some kiln-dried wood recently and although I haven't tried, I bet I could light it directly with a match. But one quarter of one of those Supercedar thingies is all I need.

    As a very last resort, the Aubuchon hardware stores where I am sell good-size bags of very dry kindling-size wood for about $6. Those take off quickly and a half dozen burn long enough to get the fire started. They're also great to have handy when you're learning how this all works. If you screw something up and end up with a smoldering fire, you can just poke a couple of those under the reluctant firewood and get things going properly quickly. Don't know if anybody will have them in your area, but it's worth a look around at what the chain hardware stores have.

    I think you're going to have fun. Keep us posted on how it's going, OK?
  24. drewsome

    drewsome Member

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    Will do, and thanks for the great tips.
  25. hlozada1

    hlozada1 New Member

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    If your looking for something to burn look into envi blocks. There is a guy on Long Island that sells them. I used them last year and loved them. I'm ordering 2 pallets. Each pallet is equal to a cord of wood. His web site is www.thelogsplitter.net

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