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Author Topic: Walnut tree suggestions  (Read 1518 times)

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Offline Hooterspfld

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Walnut tree suggestions
« on: December 09, 2018, 06:39:56 PM »
Ok so I spent all day at one of my rental properties picking up walnuts. Got 20+ 5 gallon buckets from one tree and I'm maybe 25% done. Got me thinking... hmmm maybe I should just cut the tree down. It does lean towards the house so it could become an issue down the road, not to mention with it being a rental, tenants usually don't clean up the walnuts. Any suggestions on what size to cut it? I was thinking of just cutting half of it into 3" slabs and the other half into a 6" x 8" beam to make a mantle out of. I'll be ruff cutting it with a chainsaw mill and drying it while I figure out how I want to use the wood. 

On the 6 x 8 mantle log, should I strive to center the pith? These are probable going to be 15-20" diameter, do they have any value as is? Any suggestions would be appreciated! Thanks!

 

 

Offline WV Sawmiller

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Re: Walnut tree suggestions
« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2018, 07:44:58 PM »
   What are the nuts selling for in your area? Might be more profitable to just keep collecting and selling them. A seed fork can help reduce having to bend over but I assume by now you have already perfected getting them up.

   If you have to cut the tree for safety concerns that is another, separate issue. As to what to make, what is selling in your area? Check Craigslist, FaceBook and local trader papers. Talk to local sawyers and see what they recommend.

   Walnut is pretty durable so you have some time with them but I would be sure to seal the ends good when you do buck them to length. I'd put them on some brow logs to keep them off the ground and keep them a little cleaner. Remember the curves and crotches may be the most valuable parts of the logs so be careful in where you buck the logs and don't waste them either. Good luck.
Howard Green
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Offline GullyBog

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Re: Walnut tree suggestions
« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2018, 07:57:47 PM »
I got to mill some walnut in October.  Three trees growing on the edge of a woodlot.  One had been dead for years, another was half dead, and the third was doing fine.  They were of similar dbh but there was a big difference in the amount of dark heartwood.  The healthy tree having the least and the dead tree being almost completely heartwood.  I'm told that after the tree dies the heartwood keeps expanding into the sapwood and that removing the bark speeds up the process.  They don't rot much so if you want the wood for yourself and have somewhere to put it I'd suggest "letting it marinate" a while.  Two logs became mantles and I boxed the pith because that was the only way to get all heartwood in such a big piece.  I know the nuts make a mess but I grit my teeth cutting them because they grow fast and they're awesome for wildlife, at least the leaves aren't bad.  Maybe its worth letting it get bigger since it's probably putting on some wide rings in that yard.  
There might be a little dust on the butt log, but don't let if fool ya bout what's inside

Offline Hooterspfld

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Re: Walnut tree suggestions
« Reply #3 on: December 11, 2018, 06:59:18 PM »
Thanks for the advice, walnuts are not worth much. I picked up a load and averaged about $10/hour when I sold them. Better than throwing them away, but not worth my time. For now I think I'll just leave the tree untill I'm better suited to deal with the lumber. Yes that means I'm contemplating a mill and more importantly need to figure out a drying operation. Worst case I've got a covered area in a barn I can air dry for now. 

Offline Ianab

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Re: Walnut tree suggestions
« Reply #4 on: December 11, 2018, 09:25:59 PM »
Walnut is pretty friendly to air dry, even if you want to finish it in a kiln later. 

Other woods can be a problem. Some need fast drying to prevent staining, or slow drying to prevent checking, or you need to deter bugs from infesting them etc. But walnut is one you can basically pile up in a sensible air drying stack and walk away. 
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Offline Hooterspfld

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Re: Walnut tree suggestions
« Reply #5 on: December 11, 2018, 10:32:47 PM »
Thanks Ianab!

I'm in Missouri and honestly it kind of blows my mind how sought after walnut lumber is. Around here the trees are plentiful and a lot of people think of them in the same mindset as sweet gum myself included, except I know whats underneath that bark. Good to know I can air dry with confidence! 

 

Offline Clark

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Re: Walnut tree suggestions
« Reply #6 on: December 12, 2018, 05:50:46 PM »
Considering the price that mobile sawyers charge I would look into hiring one of them and trying to sell the wood. That would give you an idea of how the market is in your area without having to pay for a sawmill.  Unless you want to become a mobile sawyer or have an abundance of wood to saw it doesnt make $ sense to invest in a sawmill.  Granted, it could be a hobby for you in which case such advice can be thrown to the wind.

Clark
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Offline TKehl

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Re: Walnut tree suggestions
« Reply #7 on: December 13, 2018, 09:32:13 AM »
 :D  I had a rental house in Springfield with a Walnut tree too.  Amazing how the tenants were always broke, couldn't take the time to pick up walnuts even if I paid them, yet were never without ciggies and usually just sitting on the porch when I go by.  Maybe it was just me.    ;)
In the long run, you make your own luck good, bad, or indifferent. Loretta Lynn

Offline doc henderson

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Re: Walnut tree suggestions
« Reply #8 on: December 13, 2018, 02:52:30 PM »
The crotch at the bottom may have a great grain pattern.  I know there are many bandmills in your area you could take it to, and save some money.  Is that poison ivy vine growing up the tree?  Good luck
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Offline low_48

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Re: Walnut tree suggestions
« Reply #9 on: December 27, 2018, 05:00:15 PM »
Plenty of steel in that tree I bet. Trees close to houses almost always have an eye bolt or two in them for clothes lines.

Offline farmfromkansas

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Re: Walnut tree suggestions
« Reply #10 on: December 27, 2018, 05:57:05 PM »
Use your metal detector.  I brought home a log with some plumbing strap sticking out.  Plan to go over it pretty well before sawing it.


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