So what's ya favorite wood?

ruserious2008 Posted By ruserious2008, Dec 13, 2011 at 5:57 AM

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  1. Lumber-Jack

    Lumber-Jack
    Minister of Fire

    Dec 29, 2008
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    Beautiful British Columbia
    They probably have it confused with Jack Pine which is an Eastern cousin of Lodgepole pine, but doesn’t grow the same, or burn the same. I have noticed many Easterners here make the same mistake calling Lodgepole pine Jack pine.
    I have burned Elm, birch and maple and they all burn pretty closely to lodge pole, so I can vouch for the accuracy of that Western compiled BTU chart.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jack_Pine
     
  2. thewoodlands

    thewoodlands
    Minister of Fire

    Aug 25, 2009
    10,825
    2,930
    Ironwood - 1
    Beech - 2
    Sugar Maple - 3

    Cherry - 4 / which we burn the most, seems like mother nature brings the Cherry down more than any other tree. Next heating season will be the first that we have more of 2 & 3 then the Cherry.


    gibir
     
  3. NextEndeavor

    NextEndeavor
    Burning Hunk

    Jan 16, 2011
    248
    62
    Loc:
    Southern Iowa
    I burned a lot of Osage Orange (hedge) last year to mix with the wet oak using at the time. Much better this year. I don't advise doing that. The sparkler show is really cool but one got over my head and made it's mark in the carpet 4 foot away. At any rate, my stacks should get high marks for "diversity". A little of everything out there. Soft/lighter weight types (including soft maples and yes, cotton wood) in warmer weather; high BTU types for cold nights or when striving for plenty of coals at wake up time. :)
     
  4. mecreature

    mecreature
    Minister of Fire

    Dec 16, 2010
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    Loc:
    indiana
    I kind of like cherry.
     
  5. Jack Straw

    Jack Straw
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    Dec 22, 2008
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    I love ash for how easy it is to split, but hickory gets me through the coldest winter nights.
     
  6. bigguy0602

    bigguy0602
    Member

    Jun 25, 2008
    11
    0
    Loc:
    Poconos Mtns, PA
    I mostly burn Oak so that would be my choice just by availability. I am burning Ash for the first time this winter and that is great stuff. I unfortunately do not get much of it.
     
  7. oldspark

    oldspark
    Guest

    "I have burned Elm, birch and maple and they all burn pretty closely to lodge pole, so I can vouch for the accuracy of that Western compiled BTU chart"
    That's a big 10-4, it seems like no matter how many charts I look at there is always a few types of wood that I disagree with.
     
  8. James02

    James02
    Feeling the Heat

    Aug 18, 2011
    346
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    Loc:
    L-Town...N.Y.

    I always wondered about the sparks...what causes that...
     
  9. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa
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    Nov 9, 2008
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    I'm definitely an Ash man. One time I saw a pickup parked near my log pile so I walked over to see what the guy was up to. He says to me "I was just admiring your Ash", to which I replied "I hope for your sake, that you don't have a speech impediment".

    Around here Birch is the #1 choice for most people but I don't like the mess of bark or how I tend to get slivers from handling it. Ash is cleaner, smells nice, splits nice, and is relatively sliver free.
     
  10. Lumber-Jack

    Lumber-Jack
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    Dec 29, 2008
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    Yeah I agree, I guess it’s hard to quantify every type of wood when so many of them are so closely related. If you look at what Wikipedia has to say even with just “Lodgepole pine†there are three main subspecies and they all seem to have their own specific region and growth characteristics. The subspecies I am familiar with, and seems to be the only kind we have around here, is called “ Pinus latifoliaâ€, and judging by what it says on Wikipedia, it is a lot different that the other two subspecies. My latifolia grows tall and straight, but they describe the coastal main species “ Pinus contorta†as growing twisted and bent. That doesn’t sound like it would be easy to split. :p

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lodgepole_pine
     
  11. basswidow

    basswidow
    Minister of Fire

    Oct 17, 2008
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    This is my 4th burning season, so I am still a rookie whose not sampled ALL wood species yet.

    I prefer OAK (Red) for easy splitting and BTU's. Well seasoned oak is like nuclear fuel in my stove. I can immediately tell oak's heat from other woods I burn.

    Other favorites, Cherry, Mulberry, ash, black locust. I have some maple that carried over that is 2 years old. It's made an impression on me vs splits from the same tree I burned last year. This maple was originally seasoned in a HH. At the end of the season, what was left - got restacked into straight rows. Now that it is 2 years old, the splits feel like rock and it burns great. Some BL also carried over and is 2 years old. Good stuff!

    There are woods I will pass on. Yes - I am a wood snob. I will run from Elm and drive right past Poplar, big tooth aspen, and other various light weight wood. It's simply not worth processing for the heat it gives, except for shoulder season. With all the wood downed in recent storms - I can afford to pick and choose.
     
  12. Blue2ndaries

    Blue2ndaries
    Minister of Fire

    Oct 17, 2011
    697
    386
    Loc:
    Oregon
    Any deciduous, non-conifer that I can scrounge is a real treat here in the PacNW, but I will pass on poplar and cottonwood. I like madrone which seems to dry quickly, burn hot, and leaves very little ash, but is hard to come by. I really, really like oak when I can get it and when it is dry. Every once in a while I can get cherry and maple; cherry is a close second to oak for me. Then there is the venerable Doug Fir...I'll burn it, but am beginning to pass on the larger dia trees as they have way too many knots and are hard to handle, split, and process. Smaller dia firs, 16-18", are real easy to split and dry.
     
  13. Singed Eyebrows

    Singed Eyebrows
    New Member

    Jan 22, 2009
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    Midwest
    I burn whats free & around here there is a lot of sugar maple. Nothing to complain about though as this is great wood when dry. Large splits take about 2 years, small ones 6 months, Randy
     
  14. bogydave

    bogydave
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    Dec 4, 2009
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    "Gotton wood" is the best.
    Here, Birch is my favorite of the few choices.
     
  15. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage
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    Termite turds exploding.
     
  16. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage
    Minister of Fire

    Feb 14, 2007
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    Michigan
    Ash is great and so is oak. Either white or red oak is fine with us. We also like soft maple for mix and for spring and fall. We also burn some cherry and elm and a few others but those are the main woods for us. For scent, it is difficult to beat sassafras so I cut some occasionally but it is not the best for burning. Just love the smell of it.
     
  17. golfandwoodnut

    golfandwoodnut
    Minister of Fire

    Sep 25, 2009
    1,436
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    Loc:
    Pittsburgh PA
    Locust, Oak, Hickory, Beech, Cherry and Maple in that order. Beech is great stuff because the bark is nice and smooth and it seasons fast and burns well. Just not as good as Locust Oak and Hickory. I do get tons of Sassafrass around here, it is super easy to split, smells good but I hate burning it. I like the smell of Cherry even better and it season super quick and burns nice, just not long.
     
  18. xman23

    xman23
    Minister of Fire

    Oct 7, 2008
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    Lackawaxen PA
    Our area is full of Red and White Oak, a few maples but not much else. I haven't burned anything that is as sweet as oak. Such dense wood. You know when you pick it up. It's three times the weight of anything else I have.
     
  19. wetwood

    wetwood
    Member

    Dec 3, 2009
    175
    11
    Any wood that is dry and fits in the stove, but mulberry, hack berry, honey locust, and ash are some of my favorites.
     
  20. onetracker

    onetracker
    Minister of Fire

    Aug 11, 2011
    602
    238
    Loc:
    rondout valley ny
    i can't always get these but:

    1- shagbark hickory
    2- honey locust
    3- white oak

    been burning 2 year seasoned white oak the last couple of weeks.
    simply amazing...deep, warm-you-to-your-bones heat, long burn times, lots of dense coals.
    if i had my druthers i would have left it season 1 more year since i had no choice but to stack it 4 rows deep.

    got about a cord of hickory in the queue...if i've timed it right we should be hitting the hickory about new years day. then its all locust after that. my best year ever in 35 years of burning.

    i hear osage is supreme but we never see it around here.


    OT
     
  21. Vic99

    Vic99
    Minister of Fire

    Dec 13, 2006
    854
    27
    Loc:
    MA, Suburb of Lowell
    Tie between white birch (splits easy, smells good, bark is kindling, medium heat) and white oak (high heat).
     
  22. Flatbedford

    Flatbedford
    Minister of Fire

    Mar 17, 2009
    5,257
    1,257
    Loc:
    Croton-on-Hudson, suburbs of NYC
    Red oak
    Black Locust
    White Ash

    I nice mix of all three would probably be best.

    Being three years ahead, I pass on most everything else now. All of them are easy to hand split and burn very nicely in my Fireview. Black Locust can be tough to get burning, but once it is going it will keep on going for a long time and leave very little ash.
     
  23. mywaynow

    mywaynow
    Minister of Fire

    Dec 13, 2010
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    Northeast
    Always like to see Cherry coming off the pile due to it's pleasant odor. It burns nicely too. Like Walnut for similar reasons. At night I want the Oak and Ash for length of burn.
     
  24. JustWood

    JustWood
    Minister of Fire

    Aug 14, 2007
    3,596
    505
    Loc:
    Arrow Bridge,NY
    I'd have to say American and Hop Hornbeam. Stuff rarely grows much bigger than 8"= not much splitting. Grows fairly straight and burns HOT. Plus it's plentiful here.
     
  25. Oregon Bigfoot

    Oregon Bigfoot
    Feeling the Heat

    May 21, 2011
    271
    82
    Loc:
    Northwest Oregon
    Madrone, Douglas Fir, Big Leaf Maple, Oregon White Ash, Red Alder, Hawthorn. I don't include Oregon White Oak, because the effort for the little bit extra BTU's is not worth it. You get 10% extra BTU's, but it takes twice as long to split, twice as long to season, and it seems twice as heavy. But if it's available, I'll still take Oregon White Oak.

    Oregon Bigfoot
     
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