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Interesting article about drying firewood.

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by oldspark, Apr 1, 2013.

  1. oldspark

    oldspark Guest

    WeldrDave, PA Fire Bug and Defiant like this.

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  2. NortheastAl

    NortheastAl Minister of Fire

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    It is a good read, and I guess it is possible with certain woods. We know you can't do it with oak.
  3. bogydave

    bogydave Minister of Fire

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    Explains some of the "why" dry wood is important.
    Sounds similar the advice given here.
    Except for the 3 months to season wood :confused:
  4. weatherguy

    weatherguy Minister of Fire

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    Works for pine I guess, Ill continue to cut and split my wood asap and get it out in the sun and wind.
  5. Woody Stover

    Woody Stover Minister of Fire

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    Yeah, anything will work for Pine, but I've had Oak rounds that laid around for years and still didn't get very dry at all.
  6. blacktail

    blacktail Minister of Fire

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    Most of the wood around here will season in rounds or logs. I've had fir and alder that were under 20%. Many times it's pushed into piles so it's off the ground and some of the bark is knocked off. Usually when I get it, I don't know how long it's been down but it's probably somewhere between 6 months and a couple years.
  7. swagler85

    swagler85 Minister of Fire

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    Like others said with pine that would work being that it seasons fast. I dont believe the same is true with other wood like oak that take longer to dry, maybe the same principle stretched out over years not months.
  8. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    For sure keep in mind that his experiment was with pine.

    For another example, I'll give the results (but not the moisture content. I don't own a MM) of what we found this past fall. In early July 2012 our area suffered a huge rain and wind storm. Trees were down (and many still are) all over the place. In our own woods we had trees blown over and the big root balls sticking up.

    A neighbor had some large white pine trees and a limb broke off of two of the pines. He wanted them cleaned up so I cut them up and put them into our wood pile. They are now burned because wishlist (a poster on this forum) burned them while evaporating maple sap this past month. But back to the cutting.

    On December 1, I cut the pine limbs which were still partially attached to the trees. Altogether I think we got somewhere around 75 or 80 logs of 16" length. The diameter of the largest was approximately 14-16" if my memory is correct. So these limbs were broken in the first week of July but by December 1 when we cut them, there was no hint of any sap. They were about as dry as a bone and very, very light.

    So in 5 months time, with the limbs still partially attached, this pine dried to the extent that I would not have hesitated to burn them in the stove on the same day as they were cut. Anyone who knows me will know that is a very odd statement for me because I usually give wood many years to dry before burning. Well, wishlist did not get all of them. I saw a couple in the stack just a few days ago. I still have not split the winter's cutting of firewood and not sure just when that task will get done this year.

    So would I burn my house down if I burned this pine?
  9. blacktail

    blacktail Minister of Fire

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    My dad cut a big douglas fir last fall that measured 17% the same day. It all depends on the species and conditions. My neighbor has an old growth fir at his beach property that fell in in windstorm a few years ago. He cuts what he needs off it and it's paper dry.
  10. nate379

    nate379 Guest

    Since when is log length wood referred to as a cord?
  11. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Look all over northern MI. Lots of stuff there cut to 8' logs and they are measured in cords.
  12. nate379

    nate379 Guest

    Yeah but cord is a measurement, not that it is in logs and whatever amount. At least that is what I got from the article.
  13. Knots

    Knots Member

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    Thanks for posting this. For the amount of people out there who heat with wood, it's surprising that there isn't more science devoted to it.
  14. Knots

    Knots Member

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    It's the Brits! I wish they'd learn proper English! ;lol
  15. Nixon

    Nixon Minister of Fire

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    YUP ! Lived there for 6 years . And as the saying goes ..... two great nations separated by a common language .:)
  16. BoilerMan

    BoilerMan Minister of Fire

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    Dennis, I think it has something to do with the fact that the pine was in full groath and the needles fully active at that time. The needles would have pulled some moisture from the tree and seasoned it faster.

    There is an old timer who told me if I had to cut wood in the summer months to leave the tree (in it's active state, leaves fully green) felled and whole for a couple of months idea being it would suck itself dry and season after c/s/s quicker. I like you, keep alot fo wood c/s/s and don't have to worry about this, but always wondered if there was some truth in it.

    TS
  17. Fins59

    Fins59 Member

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    Maybe they're talking about "pulp" cords., 8' long, like BWS mentioned. That would take forever to season.
  18. WeldrDave

    WeldrDave Feeling the Heat

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    Good read, I don't have enough space for a wood shed so my wood is stacked on pallets in the wind and sun. The "best" I have gotten is some 6" to 8" rounds seasoned in a year to throw whole in the old Fisher, and thats maple and gum. Usually takes me at least two years.
  19. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Taylor, there are many who work with this theory. However, in some tests that have been run (sorry that I don't remember where I got this information as it has been some time ago) it was proven that this pulls very little moisture from the tree. That is, not enough to make any noticeable difference.

    So naturally, I had to try it a few times with similar trees. I cut some while leaf was still green then cut others in our normal cutting time-frame of December-March. I could not detect any difference in the wood but that was not a scientific experiment as I had no equipment to test for exactness.

    I also found it interesting when my father-in-law liked to score the trees and wait a year or two before cutting them. After a year of drying, we could not detect any difference in those trees vs cutting the live tree in our normal cutting season. He was wasting his time and he stopped doing it.

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