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Author Topic: Standing dead ash surprise  (Read 1399 times)

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Offline Wood Shed

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Standing dead ash surprise
« on: January 07, 2019, 11:28:36 AM »
Recently cut some dead ash near my home and was surprised how dry it is already.  Normally anything brought in from the woods is 20% moisture or higher.  While cleaning up the small limbs and sticks throwing them on the burn pile I notices how easily it burned.  After clean up and cutting some rounds to be hauled to the OWB decided to check the moisture content.  To my surprise it was constantly less than 20%.  Never would have guessed.



 

 

 
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Offline square1

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #1 on: January 07, 2019, 12:09:36 PM »
Vertically stacked firewood is a real space saver ;)
I was informed on another forum it did not matter what the conditions, no wood in log form would ever be dry enough to burn without being split and seasoned. Standing dead ash was exactly what was being discussed.  Sometimes you just have to shake your head and walk away.

Online Southside

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #2 on: January 07, 2019, 12:24:25 PM »
This is a good example of why I tell folks that standing EAB killed Ash is a lot more dangerous than one would expect. They are a lot more compromised than they appear to be by the time we realize they are dead. I have seen plenty that broke out 20' up and these are 20" DBH trees .
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Offline Allar

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #3 on: January 07, 2019, 12:28:29 PM »
Vertically stacked firewood is a real space saver ;)
I was informed on another forum it did not matter what the conditions, no wood in log form would ever be dry enough to burn without being split and seasoned. Standing dead ash was exactly what was being discussed.  Sometimes you just have to shake your head and walk away.
1/4 of the dead spruce trees in my forest can be burned right away. They have probably less moisture than a  split log that has been drying for 5 years. And those trees are standing but they have died few years back.  True story;)
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Online Southside

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #4 on: January 07, 2019, 01:02:42 PM »
Do you have a spruce budworm problem happening there? 
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Offline Wood Shed

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #5 on: January 07, 2019, 01:17:42 PM »
Do not know where my pics went, they were there, gone now.  Will try to post some more.  

 

  
A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in. -Greek Proverb

Offline Wood Shed

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #6 on: January 07, 2019, 01:21:46 PM »
Try some more.



 
A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in. -Greek Proverb

Online Southside

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #7 on: January 07, 2019, 01:26:06 PM »
That's really wierd as I saw your first pictures!
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Offline Klunker

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #8 on: January 07, 2019, 01:32:53 PM »
I don't have/use a moisture meter.

So I have this question.
How does the relative humidity affect the moisture content of wood?

If a pc of wood is store totally away from direct moisture (inside a garage for example) would the moisture content rise and fall with relative humidity?

Offline Allar

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #9 on: January 07, 2019, 02:00:32 PM »
Do you have a spruce budworm problem happening there?
We have root rot and probably spruce beetles. I'v had a huge spruces filled with spruce beetle larvas.
We took down  a 1/3 of forest to stop the infection. Because forest inspector told us that with in a 5 years the whole forest will be gone.
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Offline doc henderson

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #10 on: January 07, 2019, 02:06:16 PM »
you make a good point.   log laying in water will be saturated.  Relative humidity changes with temp.  Usually up at night and down during the day.  There is a moisture gradient dep. on thickness, type of wood, is bark still on, that slows the change but it will happen and arrive a at a steady state.  Like your house, insulation slows heat loss in the winter, but with no heat inside eventually equals the outside.  We split green wood to open it up and increase the surface area.  Less than 20% is generally thought to be ok for burning but even dryer is better.  A standing tree with no active root system to pull water from the ground could be very dry, it might just take 10 years.  We cut some standing dead elm, and it burned fine.  Was dense and not degraded except at the base.  I will try to find a pic, but we would knock over the whole tree and support it in the grapple bucket and let the wood fall into baskets as we cut it.  So yes in your unheated garage.  In airconditioned spaced the rel. humidity is lower.  It is warmer than the outside in winter and ac units condense and remove water in the summer.  So keeping rain and snow from setting on the wood, splitting, and some air conditioned space will help.  In your garage the content will not change with day and night flux.  If you have seen the novelty weather forecaster sticks.  They are thin enough to warp with RH change rapidly.

Offline doc henderson

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #11 on: January 07, 2019, 02:11:58 PM »
in Ks our ave. relative humidity is about 35%, and air dried wood can get to about 10 to 12 %.  In the house it will get to 7% which is why we kiln dry wood for use in furniture.  There are charts that predict moisture content vs RH.

Offline doc henderson

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #12 on: January 07, 2019, 02:40:39 PM »
The real expert on this IMHO is Gene Wengert @wood doctor.  He has done research and written books,  Most of his info is available to download online.  I have a science background and did some plant research in college, which is just about enough to get half of what Gene can tell me. :D.  Temp., air movement, and relative humidity all play a role.  Concrete is porous and if it does not have a vapor barrier can wick moisture up out of the ground.  Are you asking primarily about firewood or lumber? Or just as a theoretical?

Online Southside

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #13 on: January 07, 2019, 02:48:53 PM »
Do you have a spruce budworm problem happening there?
We have root rot and probably spruce beetles. I'v had a huge spruces filled with spruce beetle larvas.
We took down  a 1/3 of forest to stop the infection. Because forest inspector told us that with in a 5 years the whole forest will be gone.
If that is the same bug then yes, you will loose your forest. I saw it happen in the late 70's through the 80's . It is a cyclical critter and is returning again. 
Franklin buncher and skidder
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Offline doc henderson

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #14 on: January 07, 2019, 03:35:34 PM »
 

 

Offline doc henderson

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #15 on: January 07, 2019, 03:37:54 PM »
 

 

 

 

Offline doc henderson

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #16 on: January 07, 2019, 03:38:44 PM »
This is how we cut dead standing elm in Ks for firewood.  Flooded and dead for at least 10 years.  load all the full crates onto the trailer, off at home and then split 1 crate at a time and convey it right back into another crate.  each crate hold about 1/4 cord when split, so got about 2 cords in a few hours, and min. lifting and handling for a guy with a log splitter.  sorry gents, I prob should have just put this in firewood.

Offline Tin Horse

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #17 on: January 07, 2019, 04:10:54 PM »
This is a good example of why I tell folks that standing EAB killed Ash is a lot more dangerous than one would expect. They are a lot more compromised than they appear to be by the time we realize they are dead. I have seen plenty that broke out 20' up and these are 20" DBH trees .
During the late summer I was looking for a few large ash on my property for an order. Needed large dia. I checked one out that I thought was sound , about 32" DBH. Started to cut and quickly noticed the colour of the chips. Rotten in about 4".
I left the tree for the time and moved on. Had barely cut in. About two weeks go we got a strong west wind. During our morning walk I noticed tree. It had sheared off about 5' up and displaced 10' to the west still standing hung up almost vertical. Never seen anything like that before.
They definitely get more respect. Got a lot of firewood and some live edge though. 
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Offline r.man

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #18 on: January 07, 2019, 08:38:03 PM »
My father always hung up next year's hunting camp firewood in a neighboring tree to let it dry.  This made it very burnable if not dry in one year standing in the round. Always medium sized hardwood trees. Standing dead for more than a year would be even better. I would burn ash exclusively if I had access to it.
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Offline hedgerow

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Re: Standing dead ash surprise
« Reply #19 on: January 07, 2019, 09:00:16 PM »
Years ago when I sold firewood if we had a bad winter and sold all our firewood even what I was going to burn we would go to the timber and find a dead standing ash or mulberry cut it down and split it and burn it right away. It would always be fairly dry and no problem to burn in the stove. 


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