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Wood snob?

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by gzecc, May 28, 2009.

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  1. gzecc

    gzecc Minister of Fire

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    I know I mostly enjoy locust, hickory, ash, oak, maple and cherry. However I have large pine trees around the property that occasionally come down. Today I decided I wouldn't be a wood snob and cut one up for some shoulder season supply. OMG, I can't split it. I can split larger of the aformentioned hardwoods but I can split pine. How hard do you have to work to get 1/2 the btu's?
    If I had to split pine, I don't think I would be a wood burner.
    Is it possibly the type of pine?

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  2. TreePapa

    TreePapa Minister of Fire

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    What are your trying to split it with? My experience, just with "residental" pine (mostly cut down due to pine bark beetle) is that some of it is stringy as he!! and don't like to be split period, but most of it seems to be split better once partially seasoned and showing some seasoning cracks. When it's green, the ax and the maul either stick or bounce (respectively) and a 20-ton hydraulic splitter (rental) will tear the wood apart rather than really "splitting" it. Being in so. calif., I've never had the opportunity to see if it splits better when frozen (not very much wood will fit in my freezer and that's the only way wood is gonna freeze in these parts).

    I'd say to buck it and stack it and forget it for about six months. Then see how well it splits.

    Peace,
    - Sequoia
  3. pulldownclaw

    pulldownclaw Feeling the Heat

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    The pine down here isn't very hard to split, maybe you've got a different type? Speaking of snobbery, a tree service was taking down a large pine across the street from me, and I went to check it out but I ended up turning it down because they'd only deliver it in long lengths! 8-/ I've already got alot of oak staring at me waiting to be split, and the 'ol lady wants me to take a break from scrounging, so I let it go. Needless to say, I'm having second thoughts. I could've hid it somewhere.....
  4. SmokinPiney

    SmokinPiney Feeling the Heat

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    Like treepapa said, buck it and wait till winter to split it. Most of the pines around here are "pitch" pines and tryin to split em green is alot harder than frozen. Let it freeze and it will almost pop apart..
  5. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Go back to what you enjoy: locust, hickory, ash, oak, maple and cherry.
  6. Duetech

    Duetech Minister of Fire

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    Pine and spruce can be buggers to split even with hydraulics but I have found that if you look at the round like a pie (wedges) and look down the length of it you can find places between the knots that will split. "IF" the round has had some time to dry. I've split spruce up to 36" and pine over 30" that way. So split from the center out and between the knot's. Wet pine as mentioned earlier doesn't split well but even dry or chilled pine will give you fits when you go cross ways of a knot.
  7. myzamboni

    myzamboni Minister of Fire

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    Great, so you are telling me you get great hardwoods AND they split easy? Well at least the depths of my winter are your shoulder season.
  8. Bigg_Redd

    Bigg_Redd Minister of Fire

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    Pine causes chimney fires.
  9. Tfin

    Tfin New Member

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    That's a negative ghostrider.............wet wood causes chimney fires. ;-)
  10. leaddog

    leaddog Minister of Fire

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    I cut down a 200year old hemlock that needed to come down before it did damage. I cut it into rounds and stated to split it. Hardest wood to split I've run into. I've got a 35ton splitter and it splits it as it will shear it. The limbs grow from the center out so it's like having a round with lots of 1in to 3in dowels all the way thru it. It does dry fast and runs fine in my gasifier but is alot of work for the btu's.
    but since it had to come down no sence wasteing it.
    leaddog
  11. billb3

    billb3 Minister of Fire

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    I have eastern white pine and hemlock here and the pine I cut into rounds and let sit because they are tougher to split green and messy with pitch any way.
    Sure seems easier to split in the Winter and if splitting by hand avoid the knots.

    I don't swing a splitting maul much anymore. Just a wedge and sledge.
  12. Skier76

    Skier76 Minister of Fire

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    I split a bunch of pine that had been piled for years at our place in VT. If it was dry, it split pretty easily. Knots made things difficult though. The punky stuff was a bear! My maul would always deflect off to one side and take of "chunks" rather than split the wood. I still have more punky stuff to chop up; it makes great wood for the firepit. Keeps those skeeters away!
  13. Vic99

    Vic99 Minister of Fire

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    I agree, hemlock is the 2nd worst to split . . . next to elm. Every time I see the elm in my yard, I shake my fist at it and grimace.
  14. joshlaugh

    joshlaugh New Member

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    I have split a bit of pine and found where the branches are coming off the trunk to be very difficult to split. I am not usually a wood snob myself but I have been passing on pine in lieu of better hardwoods this year. Although if I was sitting on close to 16 cords of wood, I wouldn't be this picky.
  15. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    Ohhh, thats just mean. :lol:
  16. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    . . . and baldness . . . at least I think that's the case since I burned some pine and now I'm going bald. :) ;)
  17. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa Minister of Fire

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    Funny how for some it can be just the opposite. I burned some pine and now I have hair growing on my palms.

    Oh wait... no, that's just dog hair from petting the groan with sticky sap on my hands.
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