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Author Topic: looking into firewood business  (Read 4726 times)

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Offline xalexjx

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looking into firewood business
« on: March 24, 2014, 04:09:42 PM »
Im curently work in the excavating business and cut wood in the winter to keep busy, last year I cut a load of veneer and logs and around 90 full cords of hardwood which was all sold to my uncle who has a firewood business. He sold almost 200 full cords of cut and split fire wood last year but is looking into different career ventures in a different area. He has a hud-son processor and conveyer that is now 4 years old and a 12k lb dump trailer he offered to sell me. I'v been thinking about jumping into it feet first as it would deversify my current business but at the same time dont want to over- extend myself. How many of you have gone into the processing buisiness and would you do it again? Also whats the thoughts on buying a used processor its probably had a total of 350 full cords through it.
Also what seems to be the most economical way to load a processor, this one has the live deck, i was thinking either a skid steer with grapple or a mini excavator with hyd thumb
Logging and Processed Firewood

Offline r.man

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #1 on: March 24, 2014, 07:29:52 PM »
I know a fellow who has a hud-son processor. He uses a dump trailer to deliver and added a clam to a full size backhoe for loading. He tries to not handle anything by hand and pre sells his wood so when the trailer is full he will deliver it. He also told me he tries to get a certain amount of the firewood pre paid for as well. If you pre pay in the fall for delivery in the spring, early summer he gives you a very good price. He then uses this money to buy his logs and plans on making his profit on the other sales.
Life is too short or my list is too long, not sure which. Dec 2014

Offline xalexjx

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #2 on: March 26, 2014, 06:03:46 PM »
any other opinions on the hud-son processor?
Logging and Processed Firewood

Offline Busy Beaver Lumber

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2014, 06:56:36 PM »
I run a bundled firewood business in Indiana. We also sell cords of firewood in the winter as well. I try my best to let others do the back breaking work of cutting and splitting the logs, however they elect do it. I have found if you shop around you can find others that will wholesale you wood for darn close to what it would cost you to process it yourself in terms of equipment, fuel, labor...etc, sometimes even cheaper.
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Offline xalexjx

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2014, 02:08:47 PM »
went and looked at it yesterday and it is actually a built rite, seems to be a nicely built machine and in very good shape, just have to get the wifes ok now...  :D
Logging and Processed Firewood

Offline xalexjx

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2014, 07:19:44 AM »
well, im officiallly in the fire wood business,  8) bought the whole business, builtrite processor, conveyer, 12k lb dump trailer and skidsteer

Logging and Processed Firewood

Offline thecfarm

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #6 on: May 14, 2014, 08:16:08 AM »
Good luck to ya.Buying tree lenght wood?
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Offline Jason_AliceMae Farms

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #7 on: May 14, 2014, 10:36:09 AM »
xalexjx - congratulations on the new equipment!  Where abouts in NY are you located?
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Offline Leigh Family Farm

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #8 on: May 14, 2014, 10:41:52 AM »
Congrats on getting the business. Be smart and save for the rainy day that will eventually come. Good luck and let us know how you're doing!
There are no problems; only solutions we haven't found yet.

Offline xalexjx

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #9 on: May 14, 2014, 02:34:01 PM »
Good luck to ya.Buying tree lenght wood?

cutting off investment properties right now, but will be buying it right off the stump later this summer.

 
xalexjx - congratulations on the new equipment!  Where abouts in NY are you located?

Newcomb, about an hour north of Lake George.

Spent a few hours processing some wood,  8)

 
Logging and Processed Firewood

Offline glassman_48

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #10 on: May 15, 2014, 05:43:20 PM »
xalexjx,
I stacked 3 face cords of 16" firewood then conveyed it into my 12' dump trailer and took a picture of it.  I only sell my wood by the trailer load.  I tell customers its approximately 3 face cords give or take.  I also am able to sort through some of the punkier wood and throw it aside in a pile.  Once customers see that I try to sort some of the lesser firewood then no one seems to have a problem with my system.  I never ever handle firewood except loading it on the log deck.  I also bag firewood into mesh bags on a pallet and have been able to sell those in the late winter/early spring when people run out of wood and also sell the pallets to summertime people that have cottages/camping etc.  I can load a mesh bag onto their truck or trailer, or they can load into their vehicle.  I purchased a few of the mesh bags at the escanaba logging show a few years ago, and made a 42" by 48" frame to set on the pallet out of an old dog pen.  Once I saw the amount of bagged wood I could do I got a regular frame and more bags.  Just another wood option for customers.

Offline xalexjx

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #11 on: May 15, 2014, 07:38:29 PM »
thanks for the advice, do you have the pic of the trailer with the wood in it? That was firewood i processed for my uncle who i bought the business from for his personal use, hoping to not handle the wood by hand at all so put it in the tandem or dump trailer right off the conveyer for now. Although at some point im going to pour a cement slab with jersey barries around the outside so i can stock pile wood then scoop it with a front end loader so the dump truck isnt held up to process wood. Still have lots of bugs to work out but I have a pretty good list of wood I already have sold.
Logging and Processed Firewood

Offline glassman_48

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #12 on: May 15, 2014, 08:45:11 PM »
xalexjx,
I dont know how to get a picture on here.  Maybe I can get my son to take a picture and have my neighbor put it on.  I took a picture of the 3 face cords stacked on the ground, then conveyed into the trailer.  After all the horror stories around here about people getting shorted or worse not showing up with wood after a down payment, I dont have much trouble with the amount of wood in the trailer.  Up in Canada some of those firewood guys spend spring, summer, and fall just bagging their wood.  They can hand load into their trailer, or just sell by the bag.  We have a logger that purchased a processor and he has 2 big 3 sided cement bins that he processes into.  Each scoop of his loader is approximately 1 face cord so he sells by the bucket or he has a larger dump truck that will handle 6 face cords.  My eventual goal is to have a quonset type hut and a couple of cement bins like the logger and use a loader.  Hardest part for me is getting the wood at the right price.  If the business keeps growing I will look for a truck with a grapple and figure out a way to deliver pallets of eco bricks and pallets of wood pellets and even my firewood pallets.  Last winter I would load a pallet of eco bricks and 3 bags of firewood (hand thrown in around the eco bricks and I would get 450 bucks a dump trailer.   Way better than 225.00 for all firewood and all in 1 trip.  If I get anything else figured out on deliveries etc. I will try to get a picture on here.  good luck again,,,,,,ed

Offline jargo432

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #13 on: May 16, 2014, 07:04:44 AM »
Not to get nosey, but does it cost you to get your wood?  The man I worked for as a kid sold firewood.  He told me he didn't pay for the wood he cut up.  It came from land owners that wanted the trees cleared.
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Offline xalexjx

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #14 on: May 16, 2014, 04:43:09 PM »
Not to get nosey, but does it cost you to get your wood?  The man I worked for as a kid sold firewood.  He told me he didn't pay for the wood he cut up.  It came from land owners that wanted the trees cleared.

Well the wood i'm using right now is on my own property but it still has a cost to cut it and skid it out never mind buying the property or taxes. But if I buy it right off the stump its between $8-$14 a cord and that can vary quite a bit. If I have to buy wood and have it trucked to here its between 85-100 a full cord, but that wont happen unless im in a pinch to keep a customer.
Logging and Processed Firewood

Offline glassman_48

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #15 on: May 16, 2014, 05:36:17 PM »
xalexjx,
The price I paid last year was 70 a pulp cord, that logger went to 90 this spring, the other logger was 80 and went to 100.  I cant make money at those prices, it was hard enough at 70, so I am concentrating more on eco bricks and wood pellets.  I am betting after the winter we all had that the prices jump is about the same % more or less around the country. 

Offline North River Energy

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #16 on: May 16, 2014, 09:43:43 PM »
Quote from: xalexjx
But if I buy it right off the stump its between $8-$14 a cord and that can vary quite a bit. If I have to buy wood and have it trucked to here its between 85-100 a full cord, but that wont happen unless im in a pinch to keep a customer.

Have you figured out your actual cost per cord on the landing, after stumpage, machine time/wear, your time, fuel, etc, etc?

And also the approximate time per cord to chop, limb, skid and buck, given the equipment you have at present?

Wondering what the actual price differential is, when all is said and done.

Offline glassman_48

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #17 on: May 17, 2014, 06:56:20 AM »
North River Energy
I found it is cheaper for me to buy it by the pulp cord, I dont have much equipment, we took a 29 hp new holland tractor in the woods with forks and my 12' dump trailer.  I tried every way I could and we couldnt come close enough to keep doing it that way.  He is young too, and I am going on ancient so that might have something to do with it. 

Offline xalexjx

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #18 on: May 17, 2014, 10:27:19 PM »
Quote from: xalexjx
But if I buy it right off the stump its between $8-$14 a cord and that can vary quite a bit. If I have to buy wood and have it trucked to here its between 85-100 a full cord, but that wont happen unless im in a pinch to keep a customer.

Have you figured out your actual cost per cord on the landing, after stumpage, machine time/wear, your time, fuel, etc, etc?

And also the approximate time per cord to chop, limb, skid and buck, given the equipment you have at present?

Wondering what the actual price differential is, when all is said and done.

I can buy wood off the stump much cheaper then buying it as pulp wood. Before just getting into the firewood I already had an established logging business. I was buying it off the stump and selling it for $67 a cord with a trucker picking it up and delivering it 8 miles one way for 90 a cord. I was making good money doing that, my c5 tree farmer is good on fuel and pretty low maintenance. Plus any of the saw logs or veneer are the bread and butter when cutting my own wood.
Logging and Processed Firewood

Offline Firewoodjoe

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Re: looking into firewood business
« Reply #19 on: May 18, 2014, 08:12:55 AM »
I buy pulp hauled in. Mostly because I get it a little cheaper because I log for them. And its way faster to process. I couldn't  sell the wood I do nights and weekend if I had to cut it on the stump. I figure I'm about $35 or so a face cord (if the pulp is straight and adds up right) when it's sitting in my dump truck. Not counting my wage or break downs or truck lic and ins. There's guys here selling it for $90 plus delivery (about $30 a cord) for 100". That's crazy. And they get $65-$70 at the mill


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