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Took more pics of my mystery wood

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by fabsroman, Feb 12, 2013.

  1. fabsroman

    fabsroman Minister of Fire

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    Alright, I started a thread a week or two ago asking what this wood was, and there was some disagreement and some requests for more pics. Today was a beautiful day out at 60 degrees, so I was out playing in the wood stacks with my son and daughter. Decided to take some more pics of this stuff. As you can see in pic #3, the bark just peels right off and it leaves little shreds behind as it comes off. I took the bark off several pieces in the stack. Literally, it just falls right off. I also took out the chainsaw and sliced the ends off the two splits to give a clearer picture of what the grain coloration looks like along with the rings.

    This wood is coming back at 37% moisture content after being in the stacks since 2011 and it burns like crap. After looking at those two stacks some more today, the good news is that 50% of it is oak.

    Let me know what you think, or if any other types of pics would be useful.

    Attached Files:

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  2. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    sure looks like an locust or hedge to me......can't understand why it's so wet, was it laying in rounds on the ground?
  3. fabsroman

    fabsroman Minister of Fire

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    Nope, it was stacked in a rack in September 2011 and it had been cut in August 2011. I might break out the splitter again tomorrow and split some more of it up and take some more readings. The two I split though were both 37% and they have been burning like crap all winter. They are the only type of wood that I will find remains from when I check out the furnace in the morning.
  4. Nixon

    Nixon Minister of Fire

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    I'm with Mr.overkill on this . Sure looks like black locust . At a loss to explain the M/C ,and poor burn performance .
  5. StihlHead

    StihlHead Guest

    As I said in that other thread and I will repeat here: locust.

    Locust dries really slow (like oak) and it has that type of bark, and it 'has a reputation for being hard to burn'. I have no problem burning it though. I have burned a lot of it here because some people have a hard time burning it, and/or people here do not know what it is. I got another half cord for free this summer that I will burn in a year or two, depending. Its good wood, just has a bad rep. Or rather, it is terrible wood, so please do us both a favor and send it all to me. ;)
  6. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    I burn hedge some times and that just doesn't look right to me. My guess is locust haven't burned much but it did look like that.

    Pete
  7. Jon1270

    Jon1270 Minister of Fire

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    Nthing black locust. Contrary to Stihlhead, most people here seem to say it dries fairly quickly. I've got a bunch of it but haven't had it long enough to know one way or the other.
  8. Ralphie Boy

    Ralphie Boy Minister of Fire

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    That's black locust, no doubt about it. It has that weird shreded middle bark layer. It is mosy likely slippery and smelly as well<> Small price to pay for real good wood. Black locust is a low moisture, high density wood and can take as long as white oak to season, or so I've read. I've got a bunch, maybe a cord, that 2 years old and is still at about 23%. Thankfully I didn't need its heat this year caust it wouldn't have been there. Remember two important items: good things come to those who wait and the best way to measure the moisture content of your firewood is with a multi-year calendar.:)
  9. Thistle

    Thistle Minister of Fire

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    Absolutely Black Locust
  10. StihlHead

    StihlHead Guest

    To follow up on my post above, I did not know what BL was 2 years ago. It is a commonly planted tree here used in landscaping in suburban yards. I was offered a half cord of black locust for free about a year ago from an arborist that hordes wood like Scotty The Overkiller. This guy's house and detached garage is surrounded by 6 foot by 4 foot stacks of firewood under tarps and under eves and dormer roofing, as well as in loose piles of fresh firewood that he gleans from his business. The BL was cut, split and dry. It was in a loose pile and he pointed to it for me to load, and I was told not to load any other wood from his hordes. From the look of it, most of his stacked wood was Doug. Anyway, he helped me load the last few logs and mentioned that he hoped I had 'a good stove to burn this stuff in', meaning he thought it was all crap. I mean, why else would an obvious overkill hoarder get rid of firewood? You would think it was Tree of Heaven or Cottonwood. I had read here that locust was good stuff, and I was downright giddy thinking about my good fortune. I was running low on good dry wood last year at that time. That wood got me through last spring, easy peasy. I do not see what the fuss is about burning this stuff, but it seems to be hard wood for some people to burn. It does take time to dry well, but so does white oak.

    ....one persons trash is another's treasure. I take all the BL that I can get.
    ScotO likes this.
  11. fabsroman

    fabsroman Minister of Fire

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    Alright, all along I had thought it was black locust. However, I was under the impression that it took 6 months to season, so I stacked it in the racks behind the house that do not get as much wind or sun. When it burned like crap, I posted on here about it and 75% of responses were locust and the rest were something other than locust. Now I know better. I have plenty of it in the stacks. At least a cord it looks like. Cut two of them up in 2011. I should have stacked all the poplar and other crap wood down there and the locust and oak up top where they would get the most wind and sun. Problem now is that I don't have any more crap wood. Everything is either oak or locust. So, I guess I will just wait some more on that locust. I will say that the white oak in the same rack as the locust "feels" more done than the locust, and they were stacked at the same time.

    Next winter should be fun. Nothing but good stuff to burn that is 2 1/2 years old and I now have the draft setting correct on the furnace.
  12. fabsroman

    fabsroman Minister of Fire

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    And I will continue to take all the black locust I come across. I will just stack it in the proper stack and treat it like a fine wine and not serve it till its time. I never should have assumed it was ready 16 months after it had been split and stacked. Actually, it was the impetus for me to finally buy a moisture meter.
  13. Bret Chase

    Bret Chase Minister of Fire

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    I am primarily burning locust right now.... you basically have to approach it like a freight train...... a little slow to start... but once it gets going... watch out!
  14. MarylandGuy

    MarylandGuy Member

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    I have a lot of that locust wood. It takes forever to season. In fact, I have a bunch of small chunks the size of soda cans that I split two years ago.

    I moved all the pieces to my basement near the woodstove which is consistantly 80 degrees and 20% humidity. After two months they are still damp. In April I plan to move the stuff back outside and put it on a pallet. Hopefully it's ready next February. Not a lot of faith in that though.

    Anybody that tells you Locust seasons fast, has no clue. At least Locust found in the northeast.
  15. bogydave

    bogydave Minister of Fire

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    Black locust.
  16. gzecc

    gzecc Minister of Fire

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    On my computer that is the wrong color for locust. Its too brown.
  17. fabsroman

    fabsroman Minister of Fire

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    Yeah, it doesn't look the same on my screen as it does in person either. Plus, I ALWAYS look better in person than in a picture on my monitor. Pics just do not do me justice. lol

    The wood is actually a somewhat honey color. Almost with a light green/yellow tint to it. Hard to really put it into words, but it does not look brown when cut.
  18. gzecc

    gzecc Minister of Fire

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    blujacket likes this.
  19. StihlHead

    StihlHead Guest

    Well, the fellow in Pittsburg above says I am a contrarian and that that the crowds here say that it dries "fairy quickly".

    It does not dry fast here in the PNW either. It is no where near dry after about 9 months and one summer season here. I have some alder that I got about the same time as the locust, and that is almost dry (same pallet/tarp storage) . Maybe its one of those species that you are better off cutting in winter before the sap runs? I do not know enough about it and I have never grown locust myself, though there seems to be a lot of it growing in the Portland Metro area.
  20. Jon1270

    Jon1270 Minister of Fire

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    Hey, I don't mean to argue one way or the other; I'm new at this. It's just that the first several times I saw locust drying times discussed here, it was people saying it dried in 12-24 months. I'd really like that to be true, since I have a bunch of it, but it sounds like a plan B is in order for next winter. Another common comment is that BL has relatively low MC to begin with, but maybe that varies with the seasons. August is probably the worst time of year to take down a tree, in terms of starting MC.
  21. mywaynow

    mywaynow Minister of Fire

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    Black Locust. Cut it with your chainsaw and watch the orange chips fly! Black locust can lay in the woods for 10 years near a creek and be solid as a rock. That may be what you have- a log that layed on the ground for a long, long time. I cut a black locust that was storm damage. Split it right away and 8 months later it mc'd at 29%.
  22. fabsroman

    fabsroman Minister of Fire

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    These locust trees were felled in late July 2011, bucked and split in August 2011, and they burn like crap in January 2013. Granted, they were only seasoning for 1 1/2 summers, so maybe this summer will be the trick. The two pieces that I measured the MC from came back at 37%, which was insane. I might have to split a couple more and see if the 37% was just an anomaly and the rest of the stuff is in the 20's.
  23. Jon1270

    Jon1270 Minister of Fire

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  24. Paulywalnut

    Paulywalnut Minister of Fire

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    It is black locust. The heavy bark is also a dead give away. The heavy
    bark will slow down drying or seasoning time. BL also doesn't burn
    well on its own. It needs some other kind of wood under it. Thats been
    mine observation and Iove how it burns slowly and hot.
  25. gzecc

    gzecc Minister of Fire

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    Attached are pics I just took of BL that has been seasoned for approx 16mos. IMO the pictures you've posted are not black locust. The bark is not furrowed enough and the growth rings are way to far a part.

    Attached Files:

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