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Would This Be Considered Seasoned?

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by ckdeuce, Dec 17, 2009.

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  1. ckdeuce

    ckdeuce Feeling the Heat

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    There is a local company that sells firewood. I asked for pricing and how long since it was split. He told me $65.00 for 1/3 cord and that it was split and stacked 5 months ago. He asked me if I was looking for well-seasoned would for a stove. I said yes. He then told me that if I could wait a few days he was going to process some logs that he had stacked for over 2 years and that it would be better for me. Now..... I know this place, and I know that they do indeed has stacks of logs that have been there for quite some time as in years. He could have just sold me what he had, but he made the suggestion. I trust the guy, I just don't know if logs that have been stacked for two years and split will be ready to go. Your thoughts? My instinct tells me no, but I have never used anything that was down that long and freshly spilt.

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  2. nlittle

    nlittle New Member

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    Depends on the kind of wood, but if you have a moisture meter you could go over and split one fresh to see its content. Then decide if you want the 5 month stuff or the newly split stuff.
  3. ckdeuce

    ckdeuce Feeling the Heat

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    Have you had any luck with freshly split old stock?
  4. logger

    logger Minister of Fire

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    Seasoned logs are in no way seasoned like wood that has been split, stacked, and then seasoned. The wood should be split for at least a year. The species has a lot to do with it. If its 5 month old oak, it's still too green. Good luck.
  5. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    As others have said, a lot will depend on the species of wood and how the wood was stored . . . honestly it may be a case of hit and miss. If I were you I might split one of his rounds from these logs (from the center of the log) and see just how seasoned this wood truly is. . ..

    Me . . . I think the best way to truly season wood is to cut it down, cut it up, split it up and then stack it . . . and leave for 9 months to a year . . . or longer.
  6. Danno77

    Danno77 Minister of Fire

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    you to the seller "Yeah, i would prefer some good seasoned wood. Can I come check it with my moisture meter before I decide?"

    I can't imagine someone saying "no" to that. just tell him you are buying, you just aren't sure whether you want his split for 5 months stuff, or the recently processed old logs (well, only tell him that if it's true)
  7. ckdeuce

    ckdeuce Feeling the Heat

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    Yeah... That's normally how I do it, but we moved not to long ago and like a bum, I left all of my 5-6 cords with the old huse and stove. What really drives me crazy is that evertime I pass by our old home I see that the wood pile has not budged. So they are not even using the stove and wood I left..

    I don't know what to do. I got a new stove in the new house and I need some wood. But finding anything this time of year is a pain if not impossible....
  8. savageactor7

    savageactor7 Minister of Fire

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    I'm of the opinion that wood doesn't start seasoning until it's split...and I believed that. But truthfully I dunno it for a fact. I would bet that the wood that was split 5 mos ago reads lower on the MM...as long at it isn't oak or locust.
  9. AlexNY

    AlexNY New Member

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    My own experiments with seasoning made me think that my moisture meter was broken.

    Here is what I have determined (again, unless my moisture meter is broken):
    1) Splitting makes no difference. I split a HUGE oak round into two, then further split one half into about 20 or so largish stove sized pieces. Over the next 18 months, I occasionally compared the internal moisture of the split and un-split wood (by chipping a piece of of each ). NO DIFFERENCE. The split wood dried exactly as fast as the un-split wood.
    2) Width does not matter, length does. I did this experiment very methodically. After picking up a truck full of six foot pine logs, I cut half into rounds, the other half I left as logs. After six months, the rounds were dry, the logs had not even begun to dry. Nothing had been split, just cut into rounds (or left as logs).
    3) Oak does not dry in a mixed pile with pine!?!?! Logically, this is impossible, I know. But that is what my moisture meter told me. Fresh cut pine was 50%+ moisture, fresh cut oak 30% or so. After two months, the pine was down to 30%, the oak at ... still 30%. After six months the pine was at under 20% (seasoned), the oak was ... 30%. Next year, after 18 months, the oak was down under 20% also. It seems as though, if mixed with pine, oak simply does not dry at all until the pine is seasoned. Who knew? Or my moisture meter is just trying to drive me crazy. Again, I measured dead centre internal moisture by further splitting a split into two smaller splits.

    The thing with oak not drying in a mixed pile with pine seems ... absurd. How can this be? A friend told me that, in reality, any oak simply does not begin to dry until after six months or so. But that is even less logical. Any experienced burners want to help me understand? I repeated my measurements many times, because I thought it had to be wrong.
  10. ckdeuce

    ckdeuce Feeling the Heat

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    Any place to buy a moisture meter locally and not online?
  11. Cearbhaill

    Cearbhaill Feeling the Heat

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    Offer to take it off their hands.
    It's a shot.
  12. littlesmokey

    littlesmokey Minister of Fire

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    Call me crazy, but have you thought about buying your old wood? If they are not burning it, maybe they would take "something" for it. Pitch them with helping clean up the mess :-S You know the condition if the wood, and don't have to do any guessing. Truck and trailer and you can get a cord or two. I'd think it would be worth a shot,if they are not using it, or are using it very slowly. You could tell them it goes bad after three years %-P
  13. ckdeuce

    ckdeuce Feeling the Heat

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    Think about it often, I would even give them some $$$. I'm just affraid of hearing the "You didn't tell us the sink was clogged" or something like that. They seemed like odd folks to me, but I'm sure I seemed odd to them also.
  14. boostnut

    boostnut Member

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    I've had 1 experience with burning "old stock" logs. They were down for 4 to 5 years if I remember correctly. I had a terrible time with them. I believe they were walnut, elm, and maple. I would suggest looking elsewhere.
  15. Bootlegger

    Bootlegger New Member

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    My two years worth of non-methodical experiments started with a pile of logs, some sat in rounds for awhile, now I have almost all of it split. Wood in logs won't season (maybe an end piece), and neither will rounds. But, the wood that sat in rounds for awhile dried very fast after splitting. Some of my poplar went from 30% to under 20% in just 4-5 weeks. The oak dropped fast too, obviously not as fast. Hickory and maple in between. I can burn the poplar and maple I split a month and a half ago, it sat in logs and/or rounds for two years but test high-20's low 30's on the meter when I first split it. Resplits are now 20% and less, make a nice knocking sound and I hear almost no hissing from the stove (which is firing great).

    My 2 pennies.
  16. quads

    quads Minister of Fire

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    Actually, I don't think it had anything to do with the oak being mixed with pine. I think you will find that's about how slowly oak seasons even when it is stacked all oak and not mixed any other type.

    I let all my oak season 3+ years, and it isn't even green to begin with when I cut it.
  17. AlexNY

    AlexNY New Member

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    Thanks. I have found that pine seasons in 6 months (one summer), and oak takes a minimum of 18 months (two summers). I am surprised that people like oak so much, I have come to avoid it almost entirely. I usually reserve about 1 cord of oak because it can burn through the very coldest nights in January and February, but I burn almost 100% pine during the day and in the tail months of winter.

    Hurray pine, boo oak!
  18. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    If its ash it would be some good stuff...
  19. basswidow

    basswidow Minister of Fire

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    Much of what I scrounge are trees that have been cut and down for sometime. I too believe that wood doesn't season until it's been split.

    I got into an oak tree about the diameter of a 5 gallon bucket that was so old (I'm guessing dead and down for atleast 10 years)it looked petrified. I thought for sure - I could split it and use it this year. No way, bucked it, split it, and it's green and needs to go a year until I use it.

    The construction site I scrounge dropped a pile of cherry that I just didn't get around to last year and it stayed in log form with full sun and wind all summer long. These logs were not big - maybe a paint bucket in size. By the time I cut them, they'd been "seasoned in log form for more than 1 year" - I figured I'be be able to use it this year. Bucked and split - still green inside and not ready for another year - despite how dry it looked on the outside.

    Both the Oak and Cherry were logs I got around to bucking and splitting this October - After I moved my ready to go wood to the house. I was hopeful I could used this end of season (March 2010) but I think it will have to keep until Oct 2010.

    Alot of wood processors/sellers store their wood in log form and process when they get orders. The wood is not seasoned IMO.
  20. kmmuellr

    kmmuellr New Member

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    My guess is that there is a micro-atmosphere around the wood (yes, it gets disturbed, put perhaps not enough) that is sitting at the humidity level of the pine. Therefore the oak doesn't start to dry out until the pine is below the relative humidity of the oak.

    K
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