"Urban" sawyers producing lumber?

Post in 'The Inglenook' started by Badfish740, Jan 29, 2013.

  1. Badfish740

    Badfish740
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    I can't link to it unfortunately because the local weekly paper only posts certain articles online, but I just read of an "urban sawmill" that just opened up about 40 miles east of me in Newark, NJ. It was started by a couple who lives here in Hunterdon County. Apparently the husband is a former logger who once worked in the GNW area of Quebec. Now they get trees from local DPW crews, etc...in log form and saw them into lumber that they then sell. I know that many mills shy away from urban and suburban trees as well as any trees from fencelines, etc...because you never know what might be in them. I wonder how these folks manage to not keep damaging expensive saw blades? In splitting up a black walnut that had been in a neighbor's yard for years I found an entire eyebolt that the tree had "swallowed" at some point as well as countless nails.
     
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  2. FanMan

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    Maybe they get the wood cheap, offsetting the cost of equipment damage. Or perhaps they run them through a metal detector first.
     
  3. JustWood

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    Bandsaw blades are cheap.
    Metal detectors are too.
    I get old telephone poles squared on one side for retaining walls by a band mill here.
    I tell him to try to stay out of hardware but if he ruins a band I'll pay for it.
    OccasionaLEE I have to cough up an extra $15.
     
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  4. fishingpol

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    Locally sourced and milled lumber brings out the ooh and ahh factor in woodworking pieces. You know, buy from the local community. Stories sell pieces sometimes. I've got a few myself. I believe that if a piece has lumber harvested from an upscale town the wow factor increases.

    What would you rather buy: "a nice maple box made from wood bought at a box store, aisle 10", or "a spalted maple box made from hand selected wood grown on the east side of a hill from a managed forest and independently milled by a local sawyer"? Cha-ching baby.;)

    Personally, I would just buy from the local guy and get some bulk price deal going. Put some jingle in his pocket too.
     
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  5. Backwoods Savage

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    For sure they are nothing like to older circular saws.
     
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  6. peakbagger

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    Unless they are selling ultrapremium wood, I dont think the economics work out. Of course if the wood is free or if the alternative is for someone having to pay a disposal fee for wood, then the numbers might line up.
     
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  7. Badfish740

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    That's the idea-a lot of this stuff was ending up in landfills. They let local DPW trucks dump logs for free.
     
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  8. granpajohn

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    I think you're right, but places like Newark have Enterprise Zone programs that remove/reduce tax and permit problems for businessmen.
    Link: http://www.newarkuez.org/

    I did a job in a similar dump big city where we couldn't get permits to fly. Eventually met with a big shot who decided we were in an EZ and signed off on the permits that afternoon. (I have worse stories about businesses that sucked up all the grant money that comes with it and then left town.)

    Or maybe it's a front for a less legal business. (Nah...not in Newark NJ ;))
     
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