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Author Topic: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak  (Read 4886 times)

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Offline Tom Caroselli

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #40 on: June 10, 2018, 11:26:14 AM »
I have a tree service business and red oak is a big portion of our daily removals. I also heat my home with wood. Both ways will work for you, but the wood in the shed if it doesn't get the wind might take a little longer to dry. Buy yourself a moisture letter, and keep a log book.

Offline doctorb

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #41 on: June 11, 2018, 07:16:27 PM »
Tom-  Welcome to the Forum!

We agree and I think it's time for a little experiment.

I am cutting and splitting a red oak (I assume.  I'll also get pics of the wood.  It's not a tree that I have ID'ed closely before.) that blew over in a storm about 3 months ago.  It was a healthy live tree.  I will take one of the 18 inch rounds and split it into 6 triangular shaped pieces.  Each will have a radius of bark attached.  I will mark the bark so I don't lose track.

I'll measure the MC after splitting, which should be very high.  (I have read here that MC is inaccurate on most meters when it's extremely high.)  I'll report that here.  I'll place a couple of the pieces on top of my outside wood stacks (fully exposed to wind / sun / rain) that will not be used for at least 18 months from now, providing 2 summers, 2 falls, 1 winter and 1 spring of seasoning.  I'll place the others inside the shed, one within one of this year's "green" stacks and another on top of the same stack.  I'll take pics to give you guys some idea of the different environments for these pieces.

Hopefully I'll write this stuff down, not turn senile, and let the wood season until December 2019.  Then I'll split the pieces and measure the MC.   We will get some idea how much the shed experience effects the MC.  I would tend to agree with your assumption regarding seasoning inside of the shed.

It's a long time to have a reminder string tied around a finger....
My father once said, "This is my son who wanted to grow up and become a doctor.  So far, he's only become a doctor."

Offline hedgerow

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #42 on: June 11, 2018, 08:01:04 PM »
We load and stack wood off the splitter on dump trailers and I store the trailers in metal pole sheds that get very hot in the summer. Usually we load the trailers in the spring or summer and burn the wood late in the winter or the next fall it always seems to be dry when I burn it. 

Offline doctorb

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #43 on: June 13, 2018, 01:49:51 PM »
All who are interested....I have started the experiment on firewood seasoning.  I took the liberty to post pics of the firewood involved in the Tree, Plant, and Wood I.D section, to verify the species of tree that I will be testing.  

Please verify species in Tree, Plant and Wood I.D.

Once confirmed, I will detail the experiment and provide pics here.  I am not trying to confuse people by posting in two different threads, but I believe that the folks interested in tree ID are not necessarily the same folks interested in firewood seasoning.  And I wanted a confirmed answer as to the tree species before continuing the experiment.
My father once said, "This is my son who wanted to grow up and become a doctor.  So far, he's only become a doctor."

Offline cutterboy

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #44 on: June 13, 2018, 03:44:58 PM »
doctor, that is an interesting experiment you've started. Hopefully we will all live to see the results.
   I looked at the pictures of the wood and believe it is a red oak. There are a few varieties of red oak, black oak being one of them. I think they all dry and burn about the same.

 

Offline doctorb

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #45 on: June 13, 2018, 06:03:34 PM »
Here's my set-up.  A three-sided shed with one small window, and different cribs to hold firewood.

 



 

I split a single round into 6 pieces and sprayed some paint on the bark to help me remember where they are located.  MC = 26%



 


I placed 3 pieces outside and 3 inside the shed.  2 of the outside pieces will sit on top of an existing woodstack, with full exposure to sun and wind and rain/snow.  Like this:



 

The other outside piece is buried in the stack



 



I did the same thing inside the shed, with two pieces on top of a stack, and one buried inside the stack.  No sunlight will reach these logs.

 I will wait 18 months, which is how long (minimum) I let wood season.  We will see if there is any measurable difference in the MC of these 4 different positions of the logs.  Somebody remind me in December 2019!
My father once said, "This is my son who wanted to grow up and become a doctor.  So far, he's only become a doctor."

Offline KEC

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #46 on: June 13, 2018, 09:38:31 PM »
Red Oak (and some other species), when cut in the spring, if the outside of the log is relatively defect-free, and you score the bark lengthwise with a chainsaw, can be de-barked with an axe. Yes, this can be a bit labor-intensive, but bark-free wood dries faster and burns better and fewer bugs. Anyone else do this ?

Offline TKehl

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #47 on: June 14, 2018, 08:13:43 AM »
Wow Doc B!  I am in awe!   :o
 
I knew my setup was kind of redneck, have seen some nicer setups, and have thought about adding a carport around my outdoor burner.  However, looking at your setup, the only comparison that comes to mind comes from a podcast I’ve been listening to about Genghis Kahn and his descendants attacking Europe in the early middle ages.  “Not only were they better than the European armies, but they brought tactics and technology that the Europeans didn’t even know existed.  It’s like they came down from a higher plane.”
 
We burn standing dead and deadfall almost exclusively as we have more of that than we can keep up with.  No sense cutting live trees other than in fencelines.  As such there is a lot of wood that goes straight from our trailers to the woodstove.  I felt real good about myself when I had last winters wood cut and stacked by mid October, covered with used tin laid on top and weighted down.  ;D
 
KEC:  As for debarking, I find if you leave a dead tree standing two-three years, the bark comes off easily and often on it’s own.   :D
Lucas 6-13+slabber, Mr. Sawmill bandmill, orange chainsaws, JD SSL, Case Backhoe, farm tractors, trailers, and 150ish acres of trees.  Fledgling woodshop with CNC router, laser engraver, Woodmaster 712, and a Berlin 108 moulder (project).  Oh, and a lovely (patient) wife and four offbearers.

Offline doctorb

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #48 on: June 14, 2018, 01:56:21 PM »
TKehl-

Thanks, but it's not that amazing.  This shed was an old 3-stall "barn".  The previous owner added a real barn to it, making it unused space.  I just removed a few of the stall partitions, changed the roofline a bit, and....there you go.  It's an old structure whose life expectancy was "extended".  I do like being protected from the rain / snow when I visit on cold winter evenings.  And I appreciate not having to knock snow and ice off the fuel just to be able to extract it from the stacks and throw into the stove.

My father once said, "This is my son who wanted to grow up and become a doctor.  So far, he's only become a doctor."

Offline olcowhand

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #49 on: June 16, 2018, 06:22:43 AM »
 
 It's on my calendar......
They say the mind is the first to go; I'm glad it's something I don't use!

Ezekiel 36:26-27

Offline John Mc

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #50 on: June 16, 2018, 07:35:10 AM »
doctorb -

I suspect your moisture meter will not read accurately over about 25% (that's common in a lot of meters designed for woodworking use, which focus on the low end of the scale). Fresh cut Red Oak has a much higher moisture content. Even if it blew over 3 months ago, it's unlikely it would be down to 26% by now (especially if it spent a good bit of that time still in tree length). If it were down to 26%, I'd expect to be seeing checking in the ends.

I've always been told the proper method is a comparison of the weight of the water to the weight of the dry wood, so if the water weighs the same as the wood, that would be 100% moisture content. In this case, it's possible to have more than 100% moisture content. Most of the studies I've read seem to use this method

Another method I've heard people argue in favor of is to compare the weight of the water to the total weight of the piece. In this case, in the example above, where the water weight equals the wood weight, the moisture content would be called 50%. Intuitively, this method makes more sense to most people: If it's 50% moisture content, then half the weight of this piece is water. However, this does not seem to be the method commonly in use.

By the first method, Moisture content in fresh cut logs ranges from 45 to more than 200%. I've read somewhere that Red Oak is generally in the mid 80% range, but I can't swear to that. Most wood dries relatively quickly to the fiber saturation point (FSP varies by species, but generally around 25-30%). That's the point where the "free water" in the cells is out of the wood. Drying below the FSP takes more time, as water is being removed from the cell walls. Generally, no shrinkage takes place while free water is being lost. The shrinkage happens as you go below the FSP. So if you are seeing cracks appear in the wood, at least parts of it are getting below the FSP.

Some light reading on the subject, if you get bored:
Wood and Moisture Relationships, by James Reeb
If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.   - Abraham Maslow

Offline doctorb

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #51 on: June 16, 2018, 10:53:47 AM »
So, are you suggesting that I weigh each piece now, and compare the weight to that of Dec 2019?  I could easily do that.  It would represent a percent of total weight lost, and may give a different degree of “seasoning” than the moisture meter.

And, yes, the tree was untouched until about 4 weeks ago when I started the buck it and move the rounds down to my wood stove area.  It’s as green as can be.
My father once said, "This is my son who wanted to grow up and become a doctor.  So far, he's only become a doctor."

Offline John Mc

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #52 on: June 16, 2018, 02:02:36 PM »
Whether to weigh or not is up to you. The meter should read accurately as you get into lower moisture content ranges. Just letting you know that if the tree is as green as you describe, it's certainly well over 26% MC
If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.   - Abraham Maslow

Offline doctorb

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #53 on: June 16, 2018, 03:42:37 PM »
Got it.  Thanks.
My father once said, "This is my son who wanted to grow up and become a doctor.  So far, he's only become a doctor."

Offline lirachamo51

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #54 on: July 30, 2018, 09:59:32 PM »
i cut in mid winter when roads are frozen and can skid out without all the dirt getting into the bark, which makes for a lot of chain sharpening when bucking. split in early summer and it burns fine in the fall. keep it tarped after september ,so snow and ice don't build up on it. only burn about 10 cords a year in camp, house, evaporator. never had an issue with creosote building in chimney's . cut a variety of hard and soft...oak,maple ( hard and soft), white ,yellow and black birch, hickory, wp,hemlock to mix in the evaporator to keep the boil from dropping off.
Randy

Offline 32vld

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #55 on: August 02, 2018, 10:49:09 AM »
My son has a wood burning oven on his pizza truck.
pizzarita.org, it is a 1946 Chevrolet 2 ton former farm truck.

I split white and red oak, that is the only wood he uses, and then
stack it in rows 4' high by 24'four feet long. The rows are
stacked 3' feet apart. The wood is in an area that gets shade
though plenty of air.

The wood is not covered. I wish I had a roof over then to keep
the direct rain and snow off and they would stay cleaner.

When I get the rounds I try to split them before they sit for one
month. Though there have been a few times were they sat for
3 to 4 months before I get them split. The rounds are stacked
bark side to the ground so the ends are exposed to the air.
The rows of rounds are stacked 3' apart. Height depends on
how heavy the rounds are.

My moisture meter says that after one year the ends are 14% and
when I re-split a piece the moisture reads 22% in the middle.

Green the moisture measured is 48% when the round is first split.

Offline 32vld

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #56 on: August 02, 2018, 11:07:08 AM »
Red Oak (and some other species), when cut in the spring, if the outside of the log is relatively defect-free, and you score the bark lengthwise with a chainsaw, can be de-barked with an axe. Yes, this can be a bit labor-intensive, but bark-free wood dries faster and burns better and fewer bugs. Anyone else do this ?
When splitting white and red oak I never remove the bark
unless it appears that is will come off easily when splitting.
Visible gap where a axe will fit in an one tap and the bark
is off.

Less insects is a plus though I do not bring the barked pieces
into my fire place. Also I split many large diameter rounds
in the 18" to 36" so there is a high yield of no bark pieces.
I never used the moisture meter to see if the pieces that had
bark had a higher moisture content than the interior pieces.

Being that the outer grow rings have more sap flow it would
appear that pieces split from that section would have a higher
moisture content due to their location and having bark does
not cause the higher moisture content. Just my guess. Not
a scientist.

Offline mike_belben

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Re: Firewood seasonoing. Red oak
« Reply #57 on: Yesterday at 11:40:16 AM »
Bark is the devil, all the crawly stuff and all the fungus lives just under it.  Once bark is gone, ants is the only other thing that might be in there and theyre pretty easy to spot.  A debarked woodpile lasts a lot longer without rotting.
Revelation 3:20


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