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Played Hookey for Firewood

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Swamp Fox, Feb 27, 2006.

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  1. Swamp Fox

    Swamp Fox Member

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    While driving around over the weekend I drove by a new subdivision going in about eight miles from where I live. There was a stack of logs laying on a lot at the entrance. I made a mental note to come back and check on the logs. I decided to play hookey from work today and loaded up the chain saws and paid a visit to the new subdivision in hopes I would find someone there. Sure enough, one of the partners was there and told me to take all the wood I wanted, they were just going to dispose of it anyway. All I had to do was saw it up to length and load it on the truck. My first load (8 foot truck bed) was white oak. Went back for the second load and loaded up with all red oak. Still some oak left as well as some maple and gum. All I have ever burned is oak and hickory. The guy running the excavator told me he still had a lot of oak to cut down and that I should come back again and get as much as I want. Came back with the second load with cut lengths ranging from 15 to 20 inches in diameter. Got that load split as soon as I got home. Will be going back this weekend and hopefully get enough to put me through next year and maybe the year after. With oak available to me, would it be worth my time bringing the maple home?
    I am now in hoarding mode for firewood. The manual for the VC cat stove I had (cast iron) said not to burn wood that is too dry. About one year is what they recommended. Representative at Blaze King (steel stove) told me to burn as dry wood as I want, "The dryer the better." So, I'm hoping to store enough wood for three or four years at a time.

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  2. adrpga498

    adrpga498 Minister of Fire

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    New Jersey
    Get all you can now, Nobody said you had to split all the rounds at once . Meaning, you could split 2008 years rounds later this year. Personnaly I try to get way....ahead on free wood inventory.
  3. bruce

    bruce Member

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    long pond pa
    take it all!!! i have about 5 years worth ,, i am now slowing down
  4. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    get it all but process and use up the maple first Maple tends to disengrate fast unless split and stacked oak lost longer
  5. zogboy

    zogboy New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2005
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    Loc:
    CNY
    How much are face cords selling for in Charlotte this year?
    Your heating season should be over in a few weeks :)
  6. Corie

    Corie Minister of Fire

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    2,430
    Loc:
    Halifax, VA
    I agree with Dylan. I've been promised way too many things and come to get them a few days later and found them gone already. Do yourself a favor and jump on it ASAP
  7. Sandor

    Sandor Minister of Fire

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    I built a house for this couple two years ago. Some local shmuck stopped by and begged for the downed oaks.

    I said ok, and moved them to the side. 2 months later, we were ready to do the final grade and the wood was still there. Stopped by his house to tell him to get it out. He said, "no thanks, I have enough already"

    So then, I had to get my escavator back over to pick this wood up and get rid of it. (no time to cut it for myself)

    Cost me about 500 bucks trying to do someone a favor. Never again.

    My advice is to grab all you can, as fast as you can.
  8. MarkM

    MarkM New Member

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    Feb 4, 2006
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    Loc:
    Orange, Massachusetts
    There is this house I drive by a few times a week that has a few 4' long pieces of beech from a tree that I believe the town took down. It's been there for a couple months. It's outside their fence and I don't think they want it. I don't need it, but everytime I drive by it, I look at it and feel a compulsion to stop and throw it in my truck. It's a wood thing.............
  9. Mo Heat

    Mo Heat Mod Emeritus

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    Unfortunately, this hardly surprises me these days. The thoughtlessness of people seems to have reached new highs in my area, apparently yours too.

    Just 3 weeks ago, I had a similar experience. Let Mo try to remember through the ever-present haze of Mo's tortured, but highly refined, consciousness...

    Two weeks ago and 3 blocks from my house I passed a homemade sign (using electrical tape for stick letters :) saying, "Free firewood / Red Oak". Naturally, I gave Mrs. Mo Heat the hard look, she sighed her expected resignation, and I spun the car around.

    I walked up to a guy and a lady in the side yard. He arrived just minutes before Mo, with a pleasure van to abscond with Mo's newfound firewood stash. The lady of the house says we can share it. The dude looks troubled, but what can he say? Since Mo lives a few blocks closer, this dude is the interloper. :) I fill the trunk (air shocks groaning) while he fills his van. The race is on!

    Living closer to this lady than he, I'm back for a second trunk load first. Man I wish they made German luxury sedan trunks bigger! There's a little diagram in the trunk showing pictorially how to load 3 golf bags, but absolutely nothing regarding firewood transport. How can this be?! You can bet Mo will contact Bayereich Motor Werken et al with an engineering change order hot off the presses to remedy the oversight of this important motoring feature in these times of peak oil.

    As I'm buttoning up my second load and finishing setting aside the remaining rounds that look as though they can successfully be fitted into my relatively minute sized German sport sedan trunk, the interloper returns, greedily loading rounds amongst the accoutremant' of his pleasure van and doing his best not to make direct eye contact with Mr. or Mrs. Mo. (Don't be eyeballin' me or the Mrs., Interloper! You know the 'stink eye' will be comin' hard at 'cha!)

    The kind and gentle lady presents Mo with her calling card of contact info. I leave her with my phone number and the solemn promise we'll be back the following Wednesday for the set aside stash of sedan sized, trunk-able rounds. She is taken by Mrs. Mo Heat's fastidiously displayed white glove and party manner demeanor and unexpectedly invites us in for a tour of her enormous and recently remodeled home.

    She informs us she is an interior decorator. Not your ordinary run of the mill decorator, but one who works with a security clearance in primarily government top-secret installations. Her list of clients includes Cheyenne Mountain, the Pentagon, and other such places we were instructed specifically, and henceforth, never to mention by name. Did I hear her say, "alien"? Hmmm... I'll have to assume non-American citizen for the moment. We exchange pleasantries and eventually are off to the Mo Heat 10-20, having seemed to make a new friend in the neighborhood. Mo's phone number was already on the wire for an in depth background check. And I'd swear I saw a small, hidden camera in her kitchen.

    (to be continued)
  10. Mo Heat

    Mo Heat Mod Emeritus

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    Out back, the Interloper continued his plunder of Mo's personal stash, free of supervision, and tolerated only in lieu of the Mo Heat household's lack of PU truck or trailer. As a parting shot with Mo passing on the way to his European luxury sedan, the Interloper brags that he'll be back with a trailer to collect the balance of Mo's stash. Mo slides away, barely withholding his dreaded 'stink eye' glare.

    Wednesday rolls around. Mrs. Mo Heat and I arrive at the lady's home, back from a mercy mission in Kansas City. Ready to seize our set-aside stash of trunk sized Red Oak rounds. There they lay, undisturbed, just as Mo left them. At least the Interloper didn't pillage Mo's trunk sized stash on the sly. Fear of the stink-eye, no doubt.

    We knock. The lady answers and says the Interloper tried to pull a fast one by calling her after Mo had left, to postpone his trailer collection of Mo's private reserve. He would not be returning for over a month.

    Keep in mind the only reason we were getting this free firewood was because the lady wanted it removed from her yard and was nice enough to take down her 'Free firewood' sign at the Interloper's own request on our first visit. Otherwise, many a competing interloper would have quickly absconded with Mo's Red Oak.

    Consternation blanketed the gentle lady's face as she related the story, but it quickly gave way to a warm and inviting smile at the lovely Mrs. Mo Heat. We are first toured around the new swimming pool while exchanging pleasantries, and eventually led to Mo's Red Oak rounds.

    Mo offers to collect the remainder of the Interloper's wood utilizing Mo's somewhat disappointing green Chinese garden cart with the nuts and bolts falling off at the least convenient moments. The decorator generously offers the use of her smallish Harley Davidson trailer and Jeep Cherokee to assist Mo and the Mrs. Another discussion of motorcycles ensues as Mo has always had a keen interest since receiving his first citation, and meeting his first judge, at the tender age of 13. We eventually accept the offer, and proceed to load firewood like banshees, taking every round the Interloper had failed to horde for himself. This amounted to about 1/4 of a cord and took us two trailer loads to transport. Of course, upon arrival at the Mo Heat home, we invited the lady in, gave her a tour, and she was suitably impressed: jealous, actually. :)

    That wood has now been split and stacked and is somewhere between 1/3 and 1/2 cord without putting a tape to it. Ahhh, there's nothing like free firewood, especially red oak. But now there's a man in a late model black sedan, wearing a dark suit and aviator sunglasses always parked in front of the Mo Heat home. Hmmm... Might this have something to do with the police shooting of my fur-coated, knife and gun-wielding neighbor a few houses up the block, who kidnapped the DHL truck and driver a few weeks back? Mo HAS been rummaging through her voluminous trash piles each week prior to trash pick-up service. Or might this free firewood business just be some sort of clever government ploy to get a better look at the alien Mo continues to examine in a distant, upstairs bedroom. We shall see. But it's just another day in the life of Mo.

    Uh, hold it a minute. The nurse is here and it's time for Mo's medication.
  11. Swamp Fox

    Swamp Fox Member

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    Zogboy, I don't know the price of a face cord here, but a cord is advertised in a range of $140 to $165 ("Hardwood/delivered/stacked"). Yeah, heating season may well be over; 75 degrees today and 75 degrees for tomorrow. No "cold" weather in site for next week--60+ degrees forcasted.

    I went by the subdivision this afternoon after work to see if, in fact, there were more logs there. Sure enough, nice oaks laying there and they put the biggest one, 24" diameter, on top and cross ways for easy cutting for me. Perhaps Friday I'm not feeling well enough to go to work.
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