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Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by Richie, Aug 13, 2013.

  1. Richie

    Richie Member

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    Central PA
    Greetings everyone, I have been a lurker on the forum for about two months and decided I have to join in. I began my addiction about a year ago when I aquired 40 acres of land that is chock full of premium hardwood. In the past year I have gathered about 15 cord of wood and cannot stop (my wife calls me woody.) Question: Standing dead black birch with that weird fungus. Moisture is at about 22-24%. It is outside but in a shady area. Maybe 2-3 hour of sun max. Will it be ready by December? Since this is my first year and I am not three years ahead I am getting desperate.

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  2. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    If that is on the inside face of a fresh re-split you are gonna be fine.
    ScotO likes this.
  3. Richie

    Richie Member

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    Central PA
    Yes it was a fresh split.
    ScotO likes this.
  4. paul bunion

    paul bunion Minister of Fire

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    NJ
    Welcome. Un split and left to the elements black birch will rot very fast. You definitely want to to get that black birch down, split and covered. It is primo burning wood.
    Nixon and ScotO like this.
  5. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    Welcome to the nuthouse, Richie...I'm sure by now you know how it goes in here!;)

    You'll be fine with that birch, but you won't get long overnight burns with it. Any dead locust or maples on the property? Getting some of that to supplement your birch would be good. Also standing dead ash (with the bark off of it), the tops of those trees will probably be ready for winter if you process them now, maybe even some of the trunkwood, but keep away from the oaks for this season.....unless you have some really REALLY long dead standers that have no bark or sapwood. The tops of them would probably be OK too....
  6. Jacktheknife

    Jacktheknife Minister of Fire

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    Welcome aboard, I was in the same situation last year. This year i am a bit better off and next year i will be golden. It takes time.
  7. Nixon

    Nixon Minister of Fire

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    West Sunbury ,Pa.
    Welcome to Hearth ! Great folks here , but then You've probably noticed that .
    As others have said , the qicker you get Black Birch split and stacked , the better . It's definately excellent firewood ,smells great when splitting it too .
    ScotO likes this.
  8. Blue2ndaries

    Blue2ndaries Minister of Fire

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    Oregon
    Welcome and awesome start to your wood pile!
    ScotO likes this.
  9. Richie

    Richie Member

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    Loc:
    Central PA
    Is the overnight burn situation because of standing dead or because it is black birch? I was lucky enough to discover about 3 cord of standing dead black locust that had moisture contents between 16-22%. Some of it was just laying on the forest floor and one day I cut one open and smelled that black locust smell and color and realized I was into something good.

    When I moved in there was about 5 cord of black locust in the shed to get me started (from the previous owner). I am spoiled because that is all that I have burned to date. Burning anything else will be a huge step down.
  10. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Welcome to the forum Richie.

    You will definitely notice a huge difference between the locust and birch. Either wood will through heat but the difference is how long the wood lasts. So this year you'll notice that you have to put wood in much sooner than when you were burning locust.

    On the drying, so long as you have the wood off the ground, wind is more important than sun. Many times we've stacked wood where it got no sun and still never had a problem getting it dry. And your wood should be ready by December. Good luck.
    HDRock, NortheastAl and ScotO like this.
  11. Locust Post

    Locust Post Minister of Fire

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    Welcome aboard........That locust will for sure spoil you. That's my favorite. Black birch looks like it is on the upper end of the firewood charts although I have never burnt any that I know of. By the way I see you are in Central PA so don't let Scotty know where you are with all that locust around.:rolleyes:
  12. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    Very few woods can rival locust in the terms of longevity in the stove......yes, just like Savage said, the birch will throw lots of good heat. The problem is that it isn't as dense as locust. I save almost all of my locust for overnighter fires in the coldest part of the year. I mix in a little maple or dried white oak to help it get started and it's good for hours and hours in the stove....

    As for 16-22% on your locust, get that stuff split and stacked, it'll probably be OK for winter!

    BTW, I just noticed you are in central PA.....where at? Any extra locust layin' around? ;)
  13. HDRock

    HDRock Minister of Fire

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    Welcome Richie
    WARNING !! Be on the lookout for Scotty the locust stalker :eek: ;)
    ScotO, n3pro and red oak like this.
  14. red oak

    red oak Minister of Fire

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    Welcome Richie! Yes the locust is just about the best there is for putting out heat - I don't have that many where I am so I burn mostly oak, which when seasoned is about as good. Locust seasons much faster though. And if you've got 15 cords after one year you're in far, far better shape than I was. Good work!
    Backwoods Savage likes this.
  15. Richie

    Richie Member

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    Loc:
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    Scotty, I am in Lancaster in the Quarryville area. One of the reasons I asked the question is because I have about 200 black birch with diameters of 12" + and about 16 black locust with diameters of 12" +. I just have so much of the birch but have to be a bit conservative with the locust. There was some land clearing and quite a few downed locusts and I think I snagged most of it up. Dumb ass me went scrounging in the woods for the locust in shorts. All I can tell you is that now I am just recovering from a staff infection inspired by poison ivy. Talk about pain! It was all worth cause I got about 3 cord of locust. Is that sick or what? I wanted to go out today but the wife wouldn't let me. I guess those crutches would have gotten in the way. That will teach a city slicker a lesson or two. Where you at Scotty?
    Backwoods Savage and ScotO like this.
  16. JOHN BOY

    JOHN BOY Minister of Fire

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    Welcome to the forum Lots of Info on the site and good people. Pull up a milk crate and start splitting wood. :)
    Backwoods Savage likes this.
  17. NortheastAl

    NortheastAl Minister of Fire

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    Hey, Richie, and welcome to the nut hut. You'll like it here.

    Sounds like you'll be ready to roll when it gets cold out.
    HDRock and ScotO like this.
  18. Paulywalnut

    Paulywalnut Minister of Fire

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    Welcome to the forum Ritchie. You see where I am. I'm kind of close to Quarryville. 30 mi.
    Mushroom country. Good start on you hoarding. You'll be close to Scotty in no time>:)
    ScotO likes this.
  19. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    I'm southwest a tad from State College, in Blair County......
    I'd definitely process up a bunch of that birch, that is very good firewood (I don't want to mislead you), it's just not a wood that will hold a really long fire like locust. It's definitely worth getting. Especially for shoulder season wood (fall and spring), it'll also be great to use for mixed loads with your locust for extended burns.

    Trust me, I've done some crazy chit to get firewood out of the woods.......but never in shorts!!:p
    You're going to fit in just fine around here!==c
  20. n3pro

    n3pro Minister of Fire

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    Enola, PA (near Harrisburg the unknown Capitol.
    Welcome to Richie. Don't have anything else to add to your question but great to have another on board. I'm jealous though, would love to have that kind of wooded land.
    HDRock and ScotO like this.
  21. HDRock

    HDRock Minister of Fire

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    +1 , 40 acres :p
  22. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    Welcome to the forum.
  23. USMC80

    USMC80 Minister of Fire

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    Pics or it didn't happen ;lol. Welcome to the forum.
  24. Applesister

    Applesister Minister of Fire

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    Hi Richie
    You must have gotten into some Poison Ivy bad. I hit a baby Chestnut sapling last week with RoundUp but anything in the vicinity of Poison Ivy usually goes down with it. I have never purchased the wands with the foam applicators, maybe someday.Im not too versed on the difference between locust and Black birch. But my imput here is to save your straightest trees and cull the weak and diseased and crooked ones. Regardless of species. Birch gets a canker kinda like black knot in Black cherry. Sometimes the tree can live and sometimes not. Cull disease out and do as Scotty says, use locust for dead of winter overnight burns. I have tons of black birch here and I love it. It burns with a deep violet flame but it may not last like locust and oak. I have dead standing Chestnut oak that gets the cooker for the overnighters.
    You will have to see for yourself. You are standing among locust fans here so you will have to form your own opinions.
  25. Holzstapel

    Holzstapel Member

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    Welcome to the forum. This is a great place for information and laughs!

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