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Wood: Buying cut, split, delivered vs. buying uncut logs vs. Scrounging

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by BrowningBAR, May 15, 2012.

?

Do you buy wood cut, split, delivered? Do you buy uncut logs? Or do you scrounge?

  1. Cut, Split, Delivered

    6.1%
  2. Uncut Logs

    16.7%
  3. Scrounge

    77.3%
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  1. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    For me, I buy 100% of my fuel. Due to the quantity that I require I can get my price per cord much lower than if I were buying in smaller quantities. At this point I am looking at going through 7-8 cords of wood a season.

    8 cords puts me at about $1,000 split and delivered.

    The local lumber yard will deliver 8 cords of uncut logs for $800. When you factor in the cost of a good chainsaw, splitter, maintenance, and time, the $200 "savings" does seem like much of a savings.

    Scrounging, for me, took a very long time and a lot of work. I did it the first two and a half years of burning and for the quantity that I needed, it seemed like the time to acquire was rather extensive. And then there was the time and cost of splitting it myself. The amount of work wasn't the issue. It was the time that it took to gather and split and stack that was the real deal breaker.

    Down the road I could see buying uncut logs, but right now, and for at least the next 5+ years I will be buying 100% of my fuel. Oddly enough, if I burned less, I would probably be more apt to scrounge since scrounging for three to four cords a year is a lot easier than scrounging for two to three times that amount.

    I know there are a lot of folks that scrounge their own wood here, but I am wondering how many scrounge and how many buy on this forum and how you came to the decision.

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  2. My Oslo heats my home

    My Oslo heats my home Minister of Fire

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    I'm with almost everything BB had to say. I enjoy the work, bucking and splitting it myself. I make my own schedule to do it and my body thanks me for the workout after it's all said and done. The cost savings is another reason, $100/cord delivered works for me every other year. My lumber guy can fit nearly 8 cord on his rig.

    I will also scrounge if it's something that I can't pass up. I don't mind doing the work for scrounging but it's not my first priority.

    Since I have a few friends that also wood burn, we have a little unwritten rule in helping each other out without saying. When one of us is in need we all jump in to help out in some form, it's a nice feeling.
  3. DexterDay

    DexterDay Guest

    All of the above... Although my vote was for Logs.... Just bought a 7 cord load (plus or minus), cut off my buddies, Fathers farm, and still get the occasional scrounge (gotta be sometging worth it). Got a 4 cord load last year and was very happy, so I went with a little more this year.

    I still have about 30 more Ash trees at my buddies place and his Fathers place to cut down. Plus a Maple at my Fathers and another Elm, right next to the Elm I cut down at my place, last year. Cutting from Trees (I cut) or Logs (delivered) is much nicer because I dictate the length. All splits are almost the same length (18"-19"). So I can utilize most of the firebox on the 30.
    My Oslo heats my home likes this.
  4. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    I'm trying a new supplier this year. Third year that I am using a different supplier. This guy seems reliable (finally). Just dropped off two cords of lotus and osage. Should be ready for 2013/2014. The other eight cords are oak and some ash.

    The downside of buying your wood is that you find a lot of unreliable suppliers out there.
  5. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    Oddly enough, the 30 will be the stove that requires the shortest splits of the three stove. Speaking of which, I need to list the Heritage so I can get that out the door.
  6. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Can't vote. You forgot to add the choice for those who cut their own wood from their own land.
  7. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    That's still scrounging: To obtain by salvaging or foraging; round up.
  8. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Okay, then I scrounge.
  9. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    I probably should have posted this in the Hearth Room. Pretty sure most of the posters in the Wood Shed cut their own wood.
  10. My Oslo heats my home

    My Oslo heats my home Minister of Fire

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    I agree, most 'wood shed' folks probably do have their own source
  11. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    Yeah, didn't even realize I made the post it in the wood shed until a few moments ago.
  12. Wood Duck

    Wood Duck Minister of Fire

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    I scrounge all of my own firewood because I enjoy the idea that I am burning wood that otherwise would be landfilled or rot, I enjoy saving money, and I enjoy the work. I even injoy keeping my eyes peeled for downed wood, cleared powerlines, etc. If I had to I'd buy logs, but so far I haven't had to. I don't own land or have family or friends that have land where I can cut and where I live there isn't much chance that tree surgeons will drop off free wood, so I am truly scrounging.
  13. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    Even though I buy all my wood I am still saving $4,000 - 5,000 per year at this point.

    The other reason I haven't bought logs, yet, is that I don't have a good spot to set them upon delivery. The front of the property would be a mess if they were placed there and there is no way the truck is making it to the back of the property.

    How much wood do you burn per season? I'm guessing you go through 2 to 3 cords?
  14. fossil

    fossil Accidental Moderator Staff Member

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    BB, if you really want me to move the thread, I will...but it's all about wood, so I think it's right where it belongs. I buy all my wood too (for a number of reasons) sometimes split, sometimes in rounds. Having lived here 5 years now, I know my go-to suppliers and the quality of their stuff (after a couple of not-so-good experiences with other folks who will never hear from me again). I would not make the assumption that most of the posters in the Wood Shed process their own firewood off their own property...our membership is much more diverse than that. Lots of folks in urban settings, depending on scrounging or buying...and folks in every other imaginable situation. How many folks have the luxury of living on a sizable chunk of forested land and have the freedom of time, the equipment, the strength & energy to move their own wood from stump to stove? I don't know, but I'm pretty sure they comprise a minority of our members here. I admire those who do it, but at this point in my life, I'll never experience it. Doesn't make me any less of a wood burner. Rick
  15. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    I'm fine with that.

    I actually figured there would be more scroungers than anything as the wood shed is full of people finding nice scores. It appears not many cut on there own property, but a lot seem to search out downed trees/cleared lots/etc.

    I always seemed way too slow at moving wood from point 'A' to point 'B' and then splitting and stacking. It took me forever and it never looked like I was going to get ahead.
  16. PapaDave

    PapaDave Minister of Fire

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    I've done all 3. Started by getting c/s/d, then moved to log loads(with an occasional tree off the property), to now cutting off the property to fill in while I figure out how to get my wood for the last part of 14-15 and beyond.
    I'd like to get a couple cord just c/d, but haven't looked into that yet.
  17. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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    I buy 3 cord c\s\d every year. I paid $555.00 ($185.00 per cord X 3) the past 2 years and it's worth every cent. It takes me about a week to move 3 cords from my outside stacks to the shelter then restack the newly delivered wood.. Occasionally I get offered some free wood so I scrounge a little.. The way I see it is I can work 1-8 hr. Sunday and I have earned enough to heat my house for a year..

    Ray
  18. ColdNH

    ColdNH Minister of Fire

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    Im somewhere between uncut logs and scrounge. I get an occasional 2 cord log of logs delievered for 150 bucks, which is worth it to me. and sometimes I hit up a good scrounge when all the stars align.
  19. Gark

    Gark Minister of Fire

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    I did purchase 3 cord loglength loads at first (two) to get ahead. Now it's all "free" scrounge, which isn't really free considering all that scrounging entails: gas, time, labor and such.
  20. billb3

    billb3 Minister of Fire

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    "scrounge" and it all comes off of my own property.

    I'm ready to start renting or buy a splitter as splitting by hand is getting tougher on my back
    I'm far enough ahead that I don't have to split for a year or two unless another oak tree falls.
  21. PA Fire Bug

    PA Fire Bug Feeling the Heat

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    I've bought two tri-axel loads of logs since starting to burn wood about two years ago. Since then I've been able to cut and haul more wood from friends and neighbors. I was fortunate to be able to cut and haul three dump truck loads this spring. If I would've know that I would've had more wood available, I wouldn't have bought a load of logs last summer. Our friends and neighbors always ask why we have so much wood. I tell them that half of it is too wet to burn and I want to be prepared for a long, snowy winter. For now, I enjoy the work especially since I don't have to work in the heat of the summer to get ready for winter. I enjoy turning logs into stacks of firewood. My family enjoys having a warm house without buying oil.
  22. jeff_t

    jeff_t Minister of Fire

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    When I see wood for $135/cord, it's mighty tempting to not cut. I saw one guy selling ash on craigslist this spring for $35/face cord. Lots of people struggling around here still, trying to make a buck.
    I cut my own because I like to. I have some farmer friends that hook me up with easy scores, and provide some heavy equipment to use as well. I also have 6-7 acres of my own woods that I'm gonna hit hard this winter. Lots of ash trees that are starting to blow over as they start to rot at the base.
    I certainly see your point. Just tending three stoves takes up a bunch of time.
  23. n3pro

    n3pro Minister of Fire

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    I would love to scrounge more but just don't have the time working two jobs. I buy 90% of my wood but do scrounge when I can. I've used three suppliers over the last four years. This year started using another who is a cousin of a coworker who is a great guy to talk to. I have been getting it for $150 per cord, but this guy charges $130 with the disclaimer "don't tell my cousin or he'd know I don't give him a break". He works a full time job, works on the family farm and some how finds time to work on as needed bases with a tree service. The only downside is it gets delivered as he gets to it rather then when I want it. Now I'm ahead it's no problem but when I was trying to get stocked up for next 12 / 13 I didn't like to hear "I'll try to get some to you in a few weeks".
  24. KaptJaq

    KaptJaq Minister of Fire

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    I scrounge but lately my scrounging is talking to the local tree service people. They dump 8 to 10 cubic yard loads of 18" to 22" long rounds near my splitting area.

    I do have an old pickup and if I hear a chain saw somewhere in the area I still chase it down. At his point my storage area (3 seasons worth) is just about full. I am going to have to start ignoring some wood or get ready for a divorce. That will change in November when she really enjoys a good hot fire and wants to know if we have enough wood for the winter...

    KaptJaq
    Gark likes this.
  25. nate379

    nate379 Guest

    10 cord log length = $1200
    10 cords cut, split, delivered $2500

    Best price I got for c/s/d was $175 a cord and the wood was crap and it wasn't even a cord.

    Worth it to save $1300? YES! Not only that but I can take my 4 cords a year out of that 10 and sell the rest, I make $200-300, so not only FREE wood but a profit too.
    Yeah my time is money too, but that's "free" if I'm having fun.
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