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wet wood?

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by micaaronfl, Dec 31, 2010.

  1. micaaronfl

    micaaronfl Member

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    ahhh i didnt know u could get a moisture meer for 30 bucks at lowes ill pick one up tommorrow and let everyone know the results.

    i plan to pack up the wood for this year and wait till next year to burn.

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  2. micaaronfl

    micaaronfl Member

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  3. czorbach

    czorbach Member

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    micaaronfl-
    Take a piece and split it - stick the probes in the fresh cut side of the split near the middle.
    The ends and exposed sides dry first and will not give you a true reading.
  4. rdust

    rdust Minister of Fire

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    You have to split a piece open then test on the middle of the freshly split surface. Checking the outside or the end won't tell you much.
  5. mainemac

    mainemac Member

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    Agree that you should try to keep ahead by 1-2 years if space allows.
    Ideally we would all have 3-4 cords of 1,2 and 3 year vintage wood scattered around our yards.
    Many of us do not have that kind of space.

    Alternative until you get there:
    You can keep the wood you just got for next year and
    try some biobricks.

    I think a pallet is about $250-275 and they claim it is the same as one cord of wood.
    Many here doubt that one pallet is as good as one cord of hardwood but it is likely better than the wood you have at this time

    They are a bit more expensive but are a lot cheaper than oil.
    They do need to be kept dry but they burn hot and clean and there is no
    guesswork about if it is "green" or "seasoned".

    As many on here have said, the ONLY way to make sure that something is seasoned
    is to do it yourself, lots of wind and sun and protect from drenching rain if possible.

    Good luck

    Keep warm and prosper


    :)
  6. CTYank

    CTYank Combustion Analyzer

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    Warmth is very important too, eh! Very effective for air-drying rate.
  7. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Yes, I do believe warmth is important and most of the drying does happen during the summer months, but moving air is definitely the key factor, eh!
  8. oldspark

    oldspark Guest

    Not sure if any one else made a comment on this but Oak can be harder to burn because it is a dense wood, no biggie if seasoned well but it does not start up as easily especially with the bigger pieces. If I want to start a fire with Oak it has to be small splits. That is why it is nice to mix the wood with other types.
  9. Kenster

    Kenster Minister of Fire

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    What OldSpark said.... I burn about 75% oak and 25% Hickory. Nothing else. I use the top down burning method. With large splits on the bottom, getting progressively smaller with each layer going up. I have roughly three sizes of splits. I make my own pencil sized 'fatwood' starters from three-rail cedar fence posts. Two inch splits of oak catch fire quickly from the cedar kindling. By the time the fiire/coals get down to the larger splits they burn real nicely. It would be a lot harder to get the fire started only with kindling and large splits.

    And once properly seasoned oak gets to burning, it will burn long and hot.
  10. ISeeDeadBTUs

    ISeeDeadBTUs Guest

    If yer in NE PA then yup! Oak is too hard to burn. Since we gotz a cold snap comin' up, I'll swap you out some Aspen so you can get yer burn on. Just tell me how much Oak yer brinin' me so I can have enough Aspen all ready for ya.
  11. micaaronfl

    micaaronfl Member

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    thanks guys for the help

    what exactly is the top down method?

    i see btu's - i live in ne philly, might be a drive?

    i brought the tester and only had time tonight to split one peice and test the middle - looks like around 30-33 percent. i will test another peice tommorrow and let you guys know.
  12. rdust

    rdust Minister of Fire

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    The wood probably has a year under it's belt to be in the low 30's. I know some others have good luck getting it burnable in a year but I've never had such luck.
  13. micaaronfl

    micaaronfl Member

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    yeah checked another split about 30-35 percent, i guess ill let it sit till next year.
  14. oldspark

    oldspark Guest

    http://woodheat.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=60&Itemid=70
  15. wood-fan-atic

    wood-fan-atic New Member

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    30-35% = Next year for sure. Don't put that wood in your stove. It will NOT give good heat at all , using up all available BTU's to burn off the excess moisture instead of warming your house.....not to mention coating your liner with creosote. Save it for next year. Call around to any wood sellers you can find, and ask them if they can sell you a load of exclusively Ash. Ash seasons quickly and is an excellent firewood. If you get it now and stack it(top covered only), you can rest assured that you will have nice ,dry firewood for next year. Good Luck!!
  16. micaaronfl

    micaaronfl Member

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    thanks for the link for the top down method i will have to try it.

    yeah i will stop burning it this year. you know i have been debating with the installer about my merrimacks thermal fan not going on for like 2 hours when its supposed to go on in 20 minutes with a good burn. maybe the whole reason has been this wood. plus it seems that i havent been getting real good heat unless i burn for like 6 plus hours straight. i have been burning everyday since this was installed in mid december, mostly trying to use this uncured wood. do u think getting my chimney swept before next season would be a problem? i dont want a chimney fire but i also dont have the cash right now to pay a sweeper.

    as for the future wood i was just going to buy bindles of kiln dried hardwoods from hd until im out of the season and cut back my burning till just the weekends.
  17. Kenster

    Kenster Minister of Fire

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    Since you've been burning bad wood I would definitely have the chimney swept and the cap cleaned. You can get it done after this burning season but don't wait until next fall when the Sweeps get swamped. Have it done this spring when you are finished burning for the year.

    Around here those bundles at the stores sell for $4 or $5 for three splits. They say it is .75 cubic feet. Someone said that works out to about a $1000 a cord. I would follow the recommendations others have given you and buy a good supply, maybe a whole pallet of Bio-Blocks or whatever they're called. Good, dry, clean hot burning. Hopefully your wood will be burnable next year. But 33% is questionable. You could help it along by splitting it to smaller sizes and make sure it is as exposed to wind and sun as possible. What would really be nice if you could find someone with a good surplus of dry wood and trade them for a cord of green wood that they could stash away for two or three years from now.

    Now that you know what's happening, do your best to avoid repeating it. Think at least two years ahead. Start scrounging and looking for bargains.
  18. micaaronfl

    micaaronfl Member

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    thanks for the advice, i plan to get it done in the spring or summer. do u think burning dried kiln HD wood would help burn some of the cresotie off this season?

    i plan to build a wood shed in the spring and keep the wood exposed to the sun and wind. its tough for me to split the wood though for medical reasons, plus there is a ton of it i have a cord and a half.

    at this point swapping it out is probably not an option, i am debating on just leaving the merrimack alone and starting anew next season. at this point pretty frustrated over the whole ordeal. my wife wants me to sell it, i told her to give me one more season before we do that.
  19. Kenster

    Kenster Minister of Fire

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    There are a lot of folks with a lot more experience than I have but... if you had several fires with really good dry wood that you burn long and very hot, the creosote issue could lessen somewhat but probably not entirely. We have no idea how bad it is or how long you've been burning bad wood.

    Don't sell the stove. You and your wife will be very happy with it once you start burning good wood.
  20. wood-fan-atic

    wood-fan-atic New Member

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    You really cant "burn off the creosote". Smoke condenses when it cools - meaning NOT right above your stove....but at the furthest points from the stove- where its cooled by the cold outside air. No matter if you start burning Dennis' 7 year-old ash tomorrow.....your not going to 'burn off' the creosote that has already appeared in your liner.
    I wouldn't give up on woodburning just yet....you havent really even started. When you burn dry,seasoned wood....it is a pleasure cruise to sweet,sweet warmth. You have not had any oppurtunity to do this, so dont quit now.
    P.S.--- even heating with oil is cheaper that burning wood bundles from Home Depot.....thats financial suicide. Look on your local craigslist for brickfuel...i KNOW that there are some dealers in your area....that is the cheapest/most efficient burn youre going to get , at this point of the game.
  21. micaaronfl

    micaaronfl Member

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    thanks guys, i do love the fire when i stick in the hd wood at least it burns with the cord i got it was a constant fight to keep it lit. i do appreciate the art of it and all just frustrated as hell at this point, i have dumped a load into this thing.

    anyway maybe ill look on craigs list or for someone that may want to switch me out some oak for some burnable wood.

    unless anyone is in bucks county pa watching this so i dont have to resort to strangers on craigs list?
  22. Kenster

    Kenster Minister of Fire

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    What you'll need to do is not actually trade what you have at your house. Keep it for the future. Too much trouble to pack up your wood and move it. If you can work it out, buy another cord and have it delivered to the home of the guy who will give you a cord of dry wood.

    Maybe an ad in CL will work for you. Good luck.
  23. micaaronfl

    micaaronfl Member

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    sorry that doesnt make sense to me?
  24. Kenster

    Kenster Minister of Fire

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    Suppose I had a good supply of seasoned wood, more than I can burn this year and next. You give me a cord of green wood NOW that will be ready in two years. In exchange, I will give you NOW a cord of seasoned wood that you can burn NOW.

    This has been suggested, and done, by others on this board in the past.

    The challenge is to find someone who can, and will, give you a cord of good seasoned wood now. Plus, the OP needs to keep the green wood he already has so he can burn it next year.
  25. micaaronfl

    micaaronfl Member

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    alright i got ya now. sorry one too many beers tonight.

    i might just lookk for someone in the BUCKS county area that is willing to sell me a good quarter cord at this point, just to get me through the season. ANYONE KNOW A GOOD DEALER IN BUCKS COUNTY PA, NEAR WARRINGTON PA.

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