More BTU’s in knot or wye (crotch)?

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gzecc

Minister of Fire
Sep 24, 2008
4,709
NNJ
We all have the wye"s and knots (that are difficult to split). Is it worth taking the extra time and energy to process these? Are there more BTU's in these tough pieces, or is it all the same?
I aways felt there was, however I may be wasting my time and money!
 

drdoct

Feeling the Heat
Jan 24, 2008
431
Griffin, GA
I think you'll put out lots of BTU's while splitting... ;-) They sure seem like a denser chunk of wood than a straight piece even when dried.
 

EatenByLimestone

Minister of Fire
Jul 12, 2006
7,372
Schenectady, NY
Pound for pound, I think you will find all dry wood has the same BTUs.

Matt
 

bsruther

Minister of Fire
Oct 28, 2008
889
Northern Kentucky
If I've got a piece of wood sitting by the stove that's part of a crotch, I'll usually save it for the overnight burn. No particular reason though, except that it just looks so chunky and solid.
 

madrone

Minister of Fire
Oct 3, 2008
1,290
Just South of Portland, OR
I never thought of that...
I'll keep telling myself that while I'm trying to bust my stuck wedge out...

"...more BTUs....more BTUs..."
 

Bigg_Redd

Minister of Fire
Oct 19, 2008
4,153
Shelton, WA
gzecc said:
We all have the wye"s and knots (that are difficult to split). Is it worth taking the extra time and energy to process these? Are there more BTU's in these tough pieces, or is it all the same?
I aways felt there was, however I may be wasting my time and money!
That wood is denser (more BTUs), but is it worth it? No one can answer that question for you. Some of my friends won't even bother trying. I'll give it the college try. My old man is retired and stubborn so he'll work at it for a while before cutting them up with a chainsaw.
 

crazy_dan

New Member
Dec 26, 2007
857
Missouri
Bigg_Redd said:
gzecc said:
We all have the wye"s and knots (that are difficult to split). Is it worth taking the extra time and energy to process these? Are there more BTU's in these tough pieces, or is it all the same?
I aways felt there was, however I may be wasting my time and money!
That wood is denser (more BTUs), but is it worth it? No one can answer that question for you. Some of my friends won't even bother trying. I'll give it the college try. My old man is retired and stubborn so he work at it for a while before cutting them up with a chainsaw.
I have never found a piece my splitter wouldn't split yet. have sawed several in order to get them on the splitter :)
 

Bigg_Redd

Minister of Fire
Oct 19, 2008
4,153
Shelton, WA
crazy_dan said:
Bigg_Redd said:
gzecc said:
We all have the wye"s and knots (that are difficult to split). Is it worth taking the extra time and energy to process these? Are there more BTU's in these tough pieces, or is it all the same?
I aways felt there was, however I may be wasting my time and money!
That wood is denser (more BTUs), but is it worth it? No one can answer that question for you. Some of my friends won't even bother trying. I'll give it the college try. My old man is retired and stubborn so he work at it for a while before cutting them up with a chainsaw.
I have never found a piece my splitter wouldn't split yet. have sawed several in order to get them on the splitter :)

My old man says the exact same thing about his 290.
 

Bubbavh

Feeling the Heat
Oct 22, 2008
475
NJ Piney
Woodford said:
If I've got a piece of wood sitting by the stove that's part of a crotch, I'll usually save it for the overnight burn. No particular reason though, except that it just looks so chunky and solid.
I agree it does seem to burn longer.
 

Eric Johnson

Mod Emeritus
Nov 18, 2005
5,871
Central NYS
For all the work involved, they should have higher btus, but I really doubt it. But it helps to think that they do, for sure.
 

dznam

Burning Hunk
Jul 31, 2008
120
Coastal ME
gzecc, To your original question, there are more BTUs in those crotch pieces (and you will find that they weigh more) than the equivalent size or volume "straight grained" pieces. From a practical perspective, this means that you can get a bigger BTU load into your stove with those wyes and I think that's a a huge advantage. They will give you better burn times and greater heat output per load in direct proportion to their increased density. From my perspective, they're the most valuable part of the tree and you've got it exactly right: it's much better to have a cord of crotch wood than it is to have the equivalent cord of straight grained because you'll be getting a lot more BTUs. Whether it's worth the extra time for you to bust them up, you'll have to decide. I just put them in the splitter and go :) Just don't try to get the fire started with them!
 

gzecc

Minister of Fire
Sep 24, 2008
4,709
NNJ
I thought they were the most valuable part of the tree. Very under rated and under appreciated.
So, a crotch black ash is equal to a straight white oak?
 

dznam

Burning Hunk
Jul 31, 2008
120
Coastal ME
Might be. As someone said earlier, if the two sticks weigh about the same then they should have roughly the same BTU content. I suspect there would be some (at least minor) variation in pound-for-pound btu content among different woods, but I'd guess that those variations would generally not be significant from a wood burners point of view. Maybe someone who knows more about this could chime in?
 

billb3

Minister of Fire
Dec 14, 2007
4,674
SE Mass
I thinki they burn longer because looks are decieving and they are generally larger in mass than they look.
 

smokinj

Minister of Fire
Aug 11, 2008
15,980
Anderson, Indiana
with all the pops and crakles you get, heck the btu got be more!
 
I

ISeeDeadBTUs

Guest
No scientific answer for you, but they seem to be denser, therefor, unless the weight is coming from water, it must have higher BTUs. I try to avoid cutting or splitting. Cut to length with the knot in the middle. Burn all night. Wake up warm and refreshed.
 

dznam

Burning Hunk
Jul 31, 2008
120
Coastal ME
Good chart Cave2k, it looks generally as though heat content is highly correlated with weight, but as the chart shows, not exactly.
 
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