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Its funny but sad watching

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by Backwoods Savage, Aug 19, 2009.

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  1. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    I mentioned in another thread about people wrapping their wood pile with huge tarps, rubber and such and wrapping it so tight all the way to the ground that you would not even guess it was a wood pile.

    While out on a bike ride yesterday I also saw not less than 6 wood burners that are "ready" for winter with huge wood piles......big rounds that were cut this summer and none of them split. But they are piled nice and neatly.

    Two others who sell firewood have some decent sized stacks but almost all of it was cut this summer and they are still adding to it.

    With some folks, they just don't seem to learn how to season wood and with others they just have no clue that wood needs to be seasoned. That is really a shame.

    Do others see this same sort of thing around the country?

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  2. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    yes sir and they are starting to scramble to get that green fire wood!
  3. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    I didn't get it until I tried heating my house with wood exclusively 24/7. Many needless cords and two warped stoves later, I hope to not have to learn that lesson again.
  4. quads

    quads Minister of Fire

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    Yes, I see this same sort of thing all the time. One example, on one of the roads that I ride my bicycle, there is a place with nicely split wood that is just thrown in a rounded pile. It's been setting like that for several years and doesn't look like they have ever burned any or added to it. Just last week they put a tarp completely over it and all the way to the ground. Silly gooses (or is it geese?).
  5. PapaDave

    PapaDave Minister of Fire

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    Hey Dennis,

    I've really noticed the same quite a bit around here too. We moved up here about 3 yrs. ago, and it seems the prevailing wisdom is to get your wood all set to go some time in Aug., or Sept. for burning the same year! DOH!
    My brother is one of those "wise ones", and is just now starting to see the light. I have had to push and prod him into the mindset that wood actually needs time to dry BEFORE you try to burn it. His wife helped with that too.
    He's a neanderthal ( no offense Hogz ) when it comes to a lot of things, but I'm gonna' get him into at least the 20th century soon.
    I figured out (with the help of all here) VERY quickly (1st yr.), that trying to burn less than seaso...........uh, DRY wood is such a waste of my time and effort that I was bound and determined to make things better.
    Luckily, I had the money and good fortune to buy c/s/d and log loads ahead of time after that 1st year and since, so that I'm now 2 yrs. ahead and working on 3.
  6. 3fordasho

    3fordasho Feeling the Heat

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    I've had 10+ cords stacked along a fence line for the last couple years, uncovered and where it gets full access to sun and wind.
    Should be setting a good example. Neighbor gets some green stuff split up for his fire pit, stacks it in full shade and immediately covers it up with a heavy tarp, then wonders why it won't light and smokes so much...
  7. wendell

    wendell Minister of Fire

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    I'm sure it happens here too but I'm actually surprised how little I see it compared to what many of you report. Most stacks I see around here as i drive through the countryside are all uncovered and drying nicely.

    I guess people in Wisconsin are just smarter. ;-)
  8. mike1234

    mike1234 New Member

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    Before I joined this forum, I thought the dead standing stuff I was cutting and burning the next day was fine, and that if I cut it in the summer I could burn it that winter. I'm not sure where I would of learned what I was doing wrong without you all.

    I have a friend who has a wood furnace who is burning green (meaning he cut it the week before he burns it) because "it burns much hotter". No amount of science, fact, convincing seems to convince him otherwise. I do point out to him that we burn the same amount of wood, I heat a poorly insulated 4000 sq ft house to 78 or so, he heats a very very well insulated 1500 sq ft house to 70 and is always cold.
  9. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    Oh yeah . . . things I notice around here this time of year.

    1) Folks getting a truck load of tree length wood who are cutting and splitting it for use this winter (better I suppose than just leaving it in the rounds as you mentioned)
    2) Folks who have cut and split half of their load of wood . . . but for some odd reason haven't gone back to finish off the work for several weeks
    3) Firewood dealers who have tree length or 4-foot wood in neat piles . . . and have had it in neat piles since June or July . . . but no signs of any wood cut and split to stove length

    Makes me truly appreciate my own stack of wood since I realize that even if my wood wasn't cut and split for two years . . . it is still a heckuva lot better than what folks are buying and/or processing right now for their supply of this year's wood. Of course, the other side of me realizes that there is a very good chance I may be meeting some of my neighbors later on this winter . . . at 2 a.m. . . . in the middle of a blizzard . . . in sub-zero temps . . . while standing on a snow-slick metal roof attempting to extinguish a chimney fire. ;) :)
  10. Flatbedford

    Flatbedford Minister of Fire

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    I too was guilty of burning some wood that I didn't season long enough before I found this place. There are at least two Firewood guys near me that split the wood on the day they deliver it. I was lucky enough to buy from one of them in August last year, but the other guy I bought from in January a few years ago. I'm a little smarter now and I'm half way to being one year ahead now with free stuff. There is also an old timer tree guy near me who stores all his split wood in huge, uncovered piles and seems to deliver nice dry stuff. I don't see that many piles at people's houses here covered or not.
  11. Todd

    Todd Minister of Fire

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    Dennis, I think it's your duty as a Hearth.com member to write up some proper firewood processing flyer's and stick them in their mail boxes on your next bike ride.
  12. edthedawg

    edthedawg Minister of Fire

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    Folks in my area aren't tarping much - aren't doing much at all! Some guys have their split piles sitting un-stacked. Me and my fire-breathing neighbor both stacked our 4 cords. He puts a lot in his garage, which is left open most of the time. The rest is left out w/ a tarp or sheet of plywood only on the top in winter. (Tho his wife curiously asked me yesterday how i planned to cover the sides of my stacks... might needa have a detailed convo w/ them soon...)

    As noted in my other (seasoned...lol...) thread - I dealt w/ 3 dealers the last couple days - all fairly similar results.

    I got my first 4 cords of unseasoned dropped in Feb, before the sap really started running. Then I got caught in my own scheduling hell w/ work and construction in the house, and it all sat on the ground far too long. It's finally stacked but most can't be used til next year. I've got my next 4 cords of "seasoned" wood coming from a local place. They claim to have split/stacked "sitting spread out for 6 months to 18 months - all mixed together".

    I had tried two other places first. Both wanted $200/cord and swore up and down they both had the best wood available. One guy had oak split 8 months (almost decent) and the other guy had some split 6 months or in logs for over a year which he could buck and split for us. Sure enough I went to the 2nd guy's lot. Looked at the logs - dripping wet under the bark. The stacked splits (a pile bigger than my house) were OK - not seasoning much below the outer "layer" of pieces.

    Really sad how every one of my local firewood guys think oak seasons in logs - when it just plain doesn't. I guarantee they are spreading this misinformation to EVERY customer that they get. I've gotten dang near scripted identical stories from every firewood guy I've spoken to...

    I'll see the first two cords tonight so I can tell you better how it looks then. If I don't like what they give me, I'll probably cancel the 2nd two and go w/ the guy sitting on the 8-month stuff @ 200/cord. And largely hang'em up for this season and pay the Oil Man instead :(
  13. JustWood

    JustWood Minister of Fire

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    Same as puttin' a banana peel in a baggie and setting it in the sun. ROT!!!!!!!!!!
  14. Skier76

    Skier76 Minister of Fire

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    One of our neighbors has his stacks covered with tarps all the way to the ground. That in itself isn't good; then you factor in all the rain we had this year. So that ground has been moist for a much longer time. But I just keep my mouth shut. I don't want to come accross as arrogant.
  15. Archie

    Archie Member

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    Not too many wood burners in this part of the country. Those who do have wood stacks seem to be split into two camps - - (1) rotting in the woods, and (2) covered with a tarp year round. Maybe I should send out a leaflet directing them to hearth.com.
  16. timfromohio

    timfromohio Minister of Fire

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    This is a good thread b/c it might answer a question that a relative greenhorn like myself has - do you guys think that the sides of the woodpile that get wet (assuming you just cover the top of the pile) dry out enough in between rainy spells? Personally, I stack wood on pallets and use a tarp just on the tops of the piles of stacked wood. If I do see that the weather forecast calls for multiple days of heavy rain, I do pull the tarp down to cover the sides, but then put back up once rain is over. I've always wondered about folks who have wood sheds - it seems like the wood still has an opportunity to get really wet with just a roof over it? Keep in mind I'm only coming up on my third season of burning full-time through the winter up here in NEOhio, so I'm still learing a lot.
  17. d.n.f.

    d.n.f. New Member

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    A bunch of people leave it uncovered all spring summer fall and cover the tops in the winter so snow does not sit on top. Some uncover earlier or later due to rainy spring etc.
    I would say that the sideways moisture is not a big deal and doesn't really hurt the pile.
    Wood drys out in a Holfhauzen just fine and they are never covered.
  18. 3fordasho

    3fordasho Feeling the Heat

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    The only wood I cover is in the wood shed (4 cords or so that I'll be burning that winter) and that is well seasoned before it goes in. Everything else is stacked on pallets out in the wind and sun and never gets covered. Seems to work just fine.
  19. PA. Woodsman

    PA. Woodsman Minister of Fire

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    I've been seeing these things here for years, and am always amazed that in the Fall is when Tractor Supply and others run their ads for logsplitters and chainsaws! A fairly large firewood dealer in the neighboring borough doesn't have much cut/split wood but he does have whole tree-lengths in his yard that he will process and sell green to some poor saps and then they'll wonder why they can't get a good burn and come to the misguided conclusion that "heating with wood sucks" when all they have to do is have some FORESIGHT and plan AHEAD. It always amazes me that people put it off because "the weather is nice, we'll get wood later" and then go scrambling around for wood oh right about this time of year and later!

    And yes, I sometimes see the woodpiles that are wrapped from top to bottom like a ziploc bag; that I just attribute to people not knowing any better, but they should learn-I hope!
  20. Archie

    Archie Member

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    Timfromohio, not only do you not have to worry about the sides, you don't have to worry about the top. As for several days of heavy rain, that depends on the season. If it's summer, relax, do nothing. If it's getting close to heating season (say within 2-3 weeks), cover it, just the top.
  21. timfromohio

    timfromohio Minister of Fire

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    OK guys, I'll not stress as much about covering the woodpile until the Fall.
  22. ikessky

    ikessky Minister of Fire

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    I just talked to a guy the other day that buys his wood by the truck load, stacks it up, and then cuts and splits what he needs for a couple days or weeks. Then he started talking about the chimney fire he had this year. I asked him how often he cleans his chimney. His answer? "I'm not going up there! The roof is too steep!" I'm almost starting to convince myself to take some classes and what not and become a certified chimney sweep.
  23. CarbonNeutral

    CarbonNeutral Minister of Fire

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    Why, it's not like you're going to convince him that he actually needs to sweep his chimney....
  24. Ratman

    Ratman Feeling the Heat

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    Fully seasoned: (over 2 years - mostly but not all white oak) wood is kept in my garage.
    Seasoning: outdoor piles are open or vented sides, top coverered only while it's raining / snowing.
    Sounds like busy work but it's fun.
  25. ikessky

    ikessky Minister of Fire

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    Because this is the classic mentality in the towns around here. People will gladly pay you to come and do things like this. A guy at work helped his dad set up a stainless chimney so that they can sweep it from the basement up to the roof. The only reason he wanted it like this was because he didn't want to get up to the roof to clean it. We have a lot of baby boomers in this area and many are getting to the point were they don't want to do things like this any more. I get a fair amount of auto detailing business from this generation.

    Then again, with my track record on ladders, I should probably stay away this line of work.
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