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Uber Holz

Post in 'The Inglenook' started by Mo Heat, Jan 6, 2007.

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  1. Harley

    Harley Minister of Fire

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    Man... that's a beautiful score in the scrounging department - Good score!

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  2. Mo Heat

    Mo Heat Mod Emeritus

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    This is the only way to scrounge IMO, although some loads are better looking than others. Maple doesn't compare to the white and red oak I usually burn, but it beets burning NG, that's for sure. And I'm beginning to feel like I don't have to ration wood through next year. I can throw a couple extra splits in before I hit the sack and not worry about having enough next winter. A suburban stealth burner's dream.

    If my yard was configured differently, I wouldn't need to truck all this stuff 230 feet down a hill [with riding mower and trailer] to process, and then 150 feet back up a hill to burn. I'm not complaining, though. I feel like I was visited by the wood fairy. ;)
  3. Bones

    Bones Member

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    MO, nice score on the Maple.
    I think I'll build a Holz and use an old satellite dish ( 6 foot diameter) as the base supported on the outside with blocks. Thoughts ¿
  4. Mo Heat

    Mo Heat Mod Emeritus

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    Do you live in the double-wide next to mine? ;)

    Satellite dish? Well, I guess you could try. If you do, I'd love to see some pics. Maybe you've finally found a way to recycle those things. However, I'm not sure it will be strong enough to support that kind of weight (probably 1.5 - 2 cords in a six foot holz), but I have little experience with those big old dishes.
  5. Bones

    Bones Member

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    He He He
    No, I don't live next to you. I've got an old log cabin. I've got an old one and need to get rid of it anyway. I figure the blocks around under the outside ring would give it support and make it easy to level.
  6. wg_bent

    wg_bent Minister of Fire

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    You've invented a new sport Mo. Forget bouldering... forget hang gliding. We've got Holtz Hausening. As long as we keep the cow tippers away I thing it could work. :lol:
  7. rmcfall

    rmcfall Feeling the Heat

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    bouldering, huh?


  8. Mo Heat

    Mo Heat Mod Emeritus

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    My Uber Holz has an uber bulge on the downhill side. I'll try to remember to post a pic later. Looks a lot like what happened to the first one that I also built on a hill, contrary to the instructions and common sense, of course. My whole yard is on a hill, so I don't have much choice. I'm expecting a partial collapse in the next month or two. I'll decide what to do about it then, based on how much of it stays upright.

    On a perhaps related note, my house was just reassessed for tax purposes. It went up 28%! They must have seen my Uber Holz. Maybe I can get that adjusted back downwards after it falls over. *sigh*
  9. Todd

    Todd Minister of Fire

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    Same thing happened in one of my two 8'x 8' HH. It started to bulge on one side, I tried to push some pieces back, and the whole side came down. I ended up building it a little smaller, 7' tall instead of 8' and it lasted through the winter just fine. I went through 1 full 8' x 8' HH, and about 1/3 of the 7 footer this year.

    This year I decided to forgo the Holz Haufen stacking method for the Eric Johnson method. The HH does dry wood nicely, and they look really cool, but retrieving the wood from a 7 or 8' HH can be a pain. If I can get away with straight rows over 6' tall I can get more wood in my stacking area than a HH and will be easier retrieving it.

    Like Eric I use 7.5' steel fence posts drivin into the ground about a foot and 12' apart. Then I stack the wood about 2/3 the way up and tie a piece of rope between the poles for tension, and continue til I'm at a 6' height. I was a little leery of stacking straight piles over 4 or 5', but this seems pretty sturdy so far.

    Too bad about your taxes MO. I feel your pain, I had the same thing happen to me last year, but not quite as much.
  10. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Yeah taxes are a lot of fun. Year after year they have been jacking our taxes up and saying "Sorry, your property values are soaring so your taxes do also."

    This year the value of the property fell like a rock, thirty thousand rocks, and now they are raising the taxes saying "Sorry, property values are down so we need to raise taxes to cover the shortfall.".

    Say WHAT?!!!
  11. Gunner

    Gunner New Member

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    Yep woke up this morning to a partial collapse of my wood pile. Although not a HH is fell down just the same. This is my first spring at this house so I learned where I stacked my wood becomes a swamp in the spring. The 4" rails that I stacked my piles on are completely swallowed up by the spring goo. Some cursing and 1hr of stacking and it's back up...how long it will stay is another thing.
  12. Mo Heat

    Mo Heat Mod Emeritus

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    Todd, I'm with you on the lower height being more stable. I think I may also try Eric's metal fence posts and poly rope 6 foot rows. I've got a place picked out, but it's on a slope, too. I'm wondering if I can just put one "rail row" to compensate for the slope. The "rail row" would be on the downhill side so as to make that first course about level. It'll probably be a few weeks before I get to splitting the new maple delivery, but I'll post something when I start stacking, hopefully with some pictures.

    Taxes: BB. I feel for you. That's typical political logic. You've got extra money, they want some. They need extra money, they want more. My school district must have needed another couple hundred busses or something. My taxes are astronomical IMO! Of course, I'm probably still better off than the New Englanders, but they get perks...

    Anybody know how the Massachusettes (sp) socialist health care experiment is going?
  13. Bones

    Bones Member

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    MO, do you have 1 or 2 rings aroud the outside ¿ It seems that 2 rings of wood would be more stable for a large Holz.
  14. Mo Heat

    Mo Heat Mod Emeritus

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    Bones, You may have something there. I never thought to do a second inner ring, but I'll bet it would be much more stable. One problem I might have is not having enough long splits. One of the reasons I use the holz method is because I have so many stubby pieces that I just throw into the center, likely causing overall instability, but they are unstackable, otherwise.

    Were you envisioning tilting the inner ring in a fashion similar to the outer ring, or stacking the inner ring flat on the ground? I think I'd be tempted to tilt the inner ring as well. I might just try that on my next holz. Sounds like a good idea.
  15. Bones

    Bones Member

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    My thoughts are with only one ring there is too much pressure pushing toward the outside with the chuncks.
    I really see no need to raise the inner ring ( maybe only the downhill half). Just a thought.
  16. Charlie Z

    Charlie Z New Member

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    Sometimes, you just need to break 36 million eggs
    My first one bulged and blew out, too. Twice. 8' base, about 8' tall.

    I have long maple to about mid height, then short 12-14" long splits. Looking at the european pictures, the first heap is too tall for the base. It does seem that the stuff piled in the center pushed out the bulge at the top. The inward tilt is hard to maintain as you climb - it gets like laying stone. If you take the time, you can successfully stack it without the cheaters. Tilt is key, though, 'shouldering' into the pile inside. The blowouts occurred where the lay was flat to negative.

    The second is going up on a wider ring and will be shorter. I like them cause the hold a lot of wood compactly and look good on my property.



    Listen, lad. I built this kingdom up from nothing. When I started here, all there was was swamp. Other kings said I was daft to build a castle on a swamp, but I built it all the same, just to show 'em. It sank into the swamp. So, I built a second one. That sank into the swamp. So, I built a third one. That burned down, fell over, then sank into the swamp, but the fourth one... stayed up! And that's what you're gonna get, lad: the strongest castle in these islands.
  17. Mo Heat

    Mo Heat Mod Emeritus

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    Hi Charlie,

    I like that quote. Hopefully, my future HH's will resemble that remark.

    BTW: do you have any photos of your HH's you can share? Upright or fallen. It doesn't matter.

    I like HH's for the same reason, plus they look interesting out in the yard and the neighbors are more curious than put out with a big bunch of wood "next door". Real conversation pieces. Like primitive artwork.
  18. zzr7ky

    zzr7ky Minister of Fire

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    Hi -

    I've got Ordinance inspector's eyeballing my HH. Needs to start 18" off the ground... So the 8'x10' stack ends up a bit over 10' tall in the center. I'm on level ground so a ladder can be used for disassembly.

    On the bulge thing. I'm using a couple pieces of 2-3' long 3" limb with some galvanized wire (9 or 10ga.). I just build them into the stack with the wire running though the pile. No restacking since.

    I'm planning another similar pile witha 5' breezeway. Adding a few poles across the top and a tarp will allow loading wheelbarrow under cover part of the season.

    ATB,
    Mike P
  19. Todd

    Todd Minister of Fire

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    Pictures please.
  20. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    Mine bulged, one side fell, I restacked, fell again, restacked again, fell a 3rd time. I stacked normal along the outside of the garage wall. Nothing fell since.
    I am a recovering HH'er and abstaining from them ever more :)
  21. Mo Heat

    Mo Heat Mod Emeritus

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    HH... NOT so easy that even a caveman can do it! ;)
  22. Mo Heat

    Mo Heat Mod Emeritus

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    This sounds interesting, but I can't quite picture it. Can you elaborate, or maybe post a photo?

    I'll definitely want to see a photo of that!
  23. zzr7ky

    zzr7ky Minister of Fire

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    hi -

    I'm nearing completion of the first half. I'm planning to lay out and start the next HH after May 7 when the Ordinence inspector is to come and inspect!

    I'll take some pictures and post as soon as I can. I'd like it neat for the 7th so the inspector's are all warm, fuzzy, and go back to sleep.

    ATB,
    Mike P
  24. Charlie Z

    Charlie Z New Member

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    Sometimes, you just need to break 36 million eggs
    Here's are some shots of the blow out and a new small haufen... A couple of recommendations.

    Keep the cant. If you lose it, it will blow out. The photos don't show it very well, but you need to maintain strong inward tip when laying the wood. If you are careful, you can place the right piece and not require any of the lateral 'cheaters'. The inner stack (upright) is tucked in against the outer ring.

    The original (blown out) haufen looked awesome when completed. Over a few weeks, its top widened, settling out and down and eventually blew out. I hadn't kept the cant at the top.

    Haufen with straight, long splits are a lot easier to build. These are apple and cherry cut 12"-14" and often bent or curved, making it tough to stack. Gnarlier pieces made up the center stack, but fruitwood doesn't grow straight like oak and it's a tough to make a haufen out of it. Uniform splits let you roll along.

    The inner pile was stacked carefully (upright) on the second haufen. With the first, it was stacked upright most of the way to the top, then it was piled on randomly at the top to finish. I think that caused a side load as the pile settled which was not resisted because the cant on the outer ring wasn't there applying inward pressure.

    I don't think the haufen shrinks as much to drying as settling (drying causes the settling). The cant pushes this movement inward to counter any bulging pressure of the settling inner stack.

    These were built on a square of 4 pallets and the second on a square of 8' ties with ply scraps. It's tougher to stack one this small. It comes out great, but I won't make another under 10' square. It's too hard to stack - you can move a lot faster with a bigger one. It will also hold a whole mess of wood. When you get to filling the middle it's amazing what it holds and the scale really gets good when bigger than 8'. The second is a little over 2 cords. There was about 3 in the taller, larger first one.

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  25. Charlie Z

    Charlie Z New Member

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    Sometimes, you just need to break 36 million eggs
    Apple, before and after...

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