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Locust....The other green wood???

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by Chief Ryan, Oct 11, 2008.

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  1. Chief Ryan

    Chief Ryan New Member

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    I've read somewhere that Locust is a decent burning green wood. I know it's top notch when it's seasoned and heavy as heck. I have loads of it but it may be a little too green for this year.

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  2. woodburn

    woodburn Member

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    I wouldn't burn anything green. Let it dry!
  3. Redox

    Redox Minister of Fire

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    Ya; I'd hold back on it if I were you. I had some last year that wasn't quite "done" yet and saved it for this year. Can't wait for the really cold weather to try it out! I think it also needs over a year as that is some pretty dense wood.

    Chris
  4. DiscoInferno

    DiscoInferno Minister of Fire

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    I have seen it listed just behind ash in terms of green burning quality, but even ash really should be seasoned.
  5. savageactor7

    savageactor7 Minister of Fire

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    I know I'm in the minority here but imo Locust is the biggest pita wood there is...and that's when it seasoned 2 years. There is no way you could possible get a stove hot enough to burn fresh cut Locust.

    If you're short on seasoned wood get some pallets or bio-Bricks.
  6. Chief Ryan

    Chief Ryan New Member

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    It's been cut down since about March or a little earlier and split about a month and a half later. It's not that i absolutely need it for this year i just cant wait to use it. But I'll wait.
  7. Chief Ryan

    Chief Ryan New Member

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    I had to look up PITA to know what you meant. Why do you say that?
  8. jeffman3

    jeffman3 New Member

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    I tested some of the locust that I cut this last spring, with my moisture meter. It pegged at over 28%. It won't be ready this year. I don't want to burn it till it gets down to 22% or lower.I have read that 20% and under is "ideal", and there is no way it is going to be even close to that this winter. Next year, I can't wait to try it! This stuff is super dense, and very high btu!
  9. Corey

    Corey Minister of Fire

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    Yes, locust is crap! Hedge is another terrible wood, oak is not far behind. Everyone should really box up these terrible woods and ship them to me! You really don't want these near your wood pile!! I can safely dispose of them to make sure they don't contaminate any other wood piles! :)
  10. Redox

    Redox Minister of Fire

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    Free shipping, Corey?

    Chris
  11. savageactor7

    savageactor7 Minister of Fire

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    When it gets cold up here you need fire for warmth, Locust just loads the firebox up with coals that last forever. Great wood to burn if you're gonna leave your house for 14hours though....but that ain't us. I know its very highly rated btu wise but in our application being in a big civil war era 5br farmhouse we need firepower...not coals that are so long lasting that they prevent you from reloading the firebox after a 6-8 hr burn.

    When we first moved here we had a lot of Locust now we just have a few trees about 1000ft upwind to enjoy the pleasant smelling blossoms. The trees have a tendency to take right over and crowd out other varieties too. We brush cut the saplings as an evasive species. Just remember to season it for a couple of years...it's like oak that way.

    Also the thorns will flatten your tires...

    ...like I said I'm in the minority here. I supposed if I had to do it all over again I would have cut other trees to mix it up with but I had so much of it that's all I cut at that time...that is after I got a few flats.
  12. Todd

    Todd Minister of Fire

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    I have 6 cords of Black Locust ready for the next two burning seasons. It's all been split and stacked for 2 years and are reading 15-20% on my moisture meter. It seems a little hard to light off but once it does it will put out gobs of heat and there doesn't seem to be an over abundance of coals, it burns right down to a very fine ash.
  13. jpl1nh

    jpl1nh Minister of Fire

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    I agree that locust does produce a ton of coals. You bring up an interesting concept, that being that too many coals can be a PITA at times. In bitter cold when you really need max heat output all the time, coals can load your stove and while they give off good heat, it isn't maximum heat. Perhaps mixing woods that don't coal as well could be helpful in those situations, though for the longest heat producing burn possible, locust is awesome :) You do need to load it on good coals and give it a bit to get burning. I love it for cold overnights.
  14. DiscoInferno

    DiscoInferno Minister of Fire

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    All dense woods are going to produce a lot of coals, but I find that locust coals burn hotter than say red oak coals. Nothing scientific, just a general impression. Also, as stated they always burn all the way down, whereas if I get too deep of a red oak coal bed, the bottom smothers and ends in charcoal rather than ash. But that's why I have stacks of pine/hemlock/poplar, to burn down coals.
  15. Bigg_Redd

    Bigg_Redd Minister of Fire

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    I'm not sure if the locust you have there is the same as here, but the stuff we have here is good to go in a couple months - compared to 1+ year for other hardwoods like madrona or maple.
  16. JBinKC

    JBinKC Feeling the Heat

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    Savageactor is 100% correct. When you get an overcoaling condition and its super cold its the pits. I use the super coaling woods in average weather and save big chunks of average coaling woods for the bitterly cold.
  17. Rockey

    Rockey Minister of Fire

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    I agree with the fact that too many coals is an absolute PITA, especially when you are trying to heat with 100% wood heat in the dead of winter. The oak I burn is notorious for this and I have about 3-4 cords of locust I will be burining this year so I think I will try the suggestion of mixing in some of the less dense species to control the abundance of coals.
  18. FireWalker

    FireWalker Feeling the Heat

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    Sounds like I'm going to learn a good lesson this year. I'm burning 98% honey locust this winter. So far, this is what I have learned. My locust was cut near the end of summer 07 and chunked up shortly after and left as covered chunks over the winter. This past spring I split and stacked it all, 4 cords. Although I don't have a meter, I think it is seasoned. It lights easily enough with littl fuss and no sizzle and makes plenty of heat when established. It does have a period near the middle of it's burning cycle where the fire is all coals, and I ran into this issue last night when I wanted to top off the stove and go to bed. I got in my 4 splits but had to push coals to the far end of the box to get them all in.

    Locust makes your hands smell bad when tending the fire, the smoke is not plesant like some other woods.

    We will see later as things get a little colder.

    By the way, my Father-in law who has burned for ever tells me that honey locust will burn semi green and make for a real light show of blue/green fire behind the glass. It will also crackle/pop some so watch out when opening your stove door, open up the damper for a minute before tending.
  19. Chief Ryan

    Chief Ryan New Member

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    OK. So it seems the denser the wood the more coals? Correct? Oak and Locust coal a lot. So what about Yellow Birch or Red Maple (i think it's red maple) Are they good to mix in to help burn off the coals?
  20. DiscoInferno

    DiscoInferno Minister of Fire

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    I suppose there might be some exceptions, but largely I think that's correct.

    Most years red maple is my main medium-density wood, it produces less coals than oak and locust and is decent for burning off coals. Silver maple is even better (lighter). Yellow birch is right up there with red oak for density, so I don't know if it would help much in that respect. White birch would, though.
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