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Author Topic: Looking for sawyer in U.P. of Michigan.  (Read 3820 times)

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Offline Paschale

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Looking for sawyer in U.P. of Michigan.
« on: January 08, 2002, 09:33:12 AM »
Hi everyone,

My family owns about 60 acres in the U.P. of Michigan, about half of which is woodlands.  There's been an unfortunate legacy when we've had wood cut on the land--case in point, years ago, my grandmother had a man cut some pine she was hoping to sell.  He cut it smaller than standard size, which raised his fee, while making it very difficult to sell.  That wood is still sitting in an old ice house on the land, and is probably almost 50 years old. We've also had an old family friend cut down ash and mill it for his own use, without our permission.  It's been a desire of mine for sometime to hopefully redeem some of these unfortunate past occasions, and upon visiting the land this summer, stumbled upon a mighty maple tree which had just been blown down which I would love to cut up and use for some woodworking. I don't own a mill myself, and don't really know how to go about finding someone who does, so I'm hoping there are some on here who could help me.  More than anything, I'm hoping to find a referral to someone who will deal with us with integrity.  It's been my experience that for the most part, people who work with wood are honest people--unfortunately for us on that land, we've run into some bad apples.  We're located in the Stonington Peninsula of Michigan, near Rapid River and Escanaba.  Are there any people on the list here who know of some people in the U.P. with portable sawmills?  Also, is it worth the trouble for a sawyer to come to someone's land to cut up one tree, or would I need to try to find a way to skid out the logs myself?  And finally, I understand that the U.P. of Michigan is one of the best places to find birds-eye maple.  From what I gather, this has to do with the particular mineral content of the soil.  Is there anyway of determining if a tree is figured with birds-eye maple before cutting it up?  It would seem to me that the value of a tree with birds-eyes maple might make it worthwhile for a veneering company to buy the tree themselves.  

Thanks ahead of time!  I look forward to reading responses, as well as educating myself in portable sawmilling, which, until most recently hasn't even been on the radar screen.  I have a feeling I'm going to get hooked!

Dan in Grand Rapids, MI
Y'all can pronounce it "puh-SKOLLY"

Offline Bibbyman

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Re: Looking for sawyer in U.P. of Michigan.
« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2002, 10:26:45 AM »
If you go out to the Wood-Mizer web site there under the topic "Links",  there is another link "Wood-Mizer Customer Links"  to sawyers with web sites.  

www.woodmizer.com

As most Wood-Mizer owners don't have web sites,  you can also call Wood-Mizer at 1-800-553-0182 and ask for a sawyer near you.  


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Offline Jeff

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Re: Looking for sawyer in U.P. of Michigan.
« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2002, 12:48:57 PM »
Welcome Dan!

Many times that family friend or neighbor is the worst person to involve in your property. You need somebody that cares about what you have to say when the job is done.

www.timberbuyer.net has a lot of info to help educate yourself on managing your forest resources.  The Timber Buyers Network was started for the Michigan Landowner.  Also you can go to www.mfra.org (The Michigan Forest Resource Alliance) and get free brochures that may help with needed info.

I am the webmaster for this site, Timberbuyers network, MFRA, Michigan Association of Timbermen (www.timbermen.org) and also the Michigan SFI site (www.michiganforestry.com). All of these orgs. will help you get info you need, and also give you information on specific businesses as you need it.

Then, you could always buy yourself a mill and become a sawyer too! We got all the help you'll ever need right here!

Identifying Birdseye Maple

Birdseye is normally found in sugar maple but its not limited to this species. It has also been found in other trees, including Norway and Red Maple, Yellow Birch, White Ash, Black Walnut and American Beech. Early observations though it was caused by birdpeck, others believed it was a function of adventitious buds. Although the exact cause of birdseye is not known, there is one thing for sure, it does command a high price.

How to Identify Birdseye

There are three ways to determine birdseye sugar maple. Due to the inconsistent nature of birdseye occurrence within a tree, it is very difficult to guarantee the quality and distribution of figured wood. Birdseye figure may be present on one side of a log but not the other, it may be found on the first log but not the second log and vice versa. A tree may birdseye in varying degrees, too much or not enough birdseye may add very little to the value of a log, or it could actually downgrade the log value.

Stage 1: Visual Exam

A careful look at bark's surface and general tree form may be useful to determine the presence of birdseye. The 'Coke-bottle' form in the lower bole has been noted as a possible indicator. However, not all Maple will exhibit this form and some diseases of Sugar Maple may cause a bole form that imitates the 'Coke-bottle' form.

Stage 2: Removal of Outer Bark

The second method requires the removal of outer bark to further examine for birdseye. This step requires the removal by hand. Look carefully at the outside pieces of bark for indentations and internally on the stem for bumps. If the birdseyes have just begun to form these bumps may not have formed yet.

Step 3: Removal of the Bark Layer

The final method is to remove the other and inner bark. This provides the most conclusive evidence of the presence or absence of birdseye; it does however damage the tree. This stage should only be used on standing timber immediately before harvest or harvested trees. The exposure of the living tissue to pathogens can result in decay and lost log value. Birdseye maple will appear as indentations in the wood and can range from small dimples to indentations of half inch or more in diameter.

Birdseye may bring more than 40 times the value of comparably graded non-birdseye timber. Recent prices have reached $50,000 per Mfbm for prime logs (US). The oversight of not including birdseye maple in a timber sale can result in a substantial financial loss for the woodlot owner.

For more information on how to identify birdseye, please refer to the following publication; Field Identification of Birdseye in Sugar Maple (Acre sacrum marsh.) Resource paper NC-317. St Paul Minnesota, USDA, Forest Service, North Central Forest Experiment Station. (16 pages.).
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Offline timberbeast

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Re: Looking for sawyer in U.P. of Michigan.
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2002, 05:21:53 PM »
Hello,  and welcome!  My property and mill are located about 30 miles north of you,  but obligations at home here in Wisconsin preclude me from being able to help you out personally,  at least until late spring,  also my mill isn't portable at this time,  I'd have to have the logs delivered.  Jeff's advice is sound,  he has his finger on the pulse!  There is a State certified forester in Escanaba who I know to be honest,  I believe his last name is Francis.  He may be able to tell you how to contact mobile millers in the area.  I do not know if there would be a charge for this service.  I know quite a few loggers in the Rock area,  but there is one guy who I would advise you not to use,  but will not publish his name here.  My address is zap@netwurx.net if you want some names of loggers,  but I don't believe that they do mobile milling.  They may know who does,  though.  Good luck,  and,  yes,  there is more birdseye in the U.P than anyplace in the U.S.  I have cut quite a bit from my own property.  Didn't know it was birseye until I sawed it.  The forester should also be able to provide you a place to sell the logs if you decide to go that route.
Where the heck is my axe???

Offline Ron Scott

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Re: Looking for sawyer in U.P. of Michigan.
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2002, 05:56:08 PM »
Contact is:

Dean Francis
630 S. 16th Street
Escanaba, MI 49829
(906) 786-3488 (business)
(906) 789-3682 (home)
email: deanfrancis@uplogon.com

Dean works out of Escanaba for Grossman Forestry Company, Newberry, MI ((906) 293-9707

Since your property is on the Stonington Peninsula another good contact would be:

George McLauglin
9739 22 Road
Rapid River, Mi 49878
(906) 474-6840

George lives on the Stonington Peninsula out of Rapid River. He is a professional forester, retired Timber Staff Officer from the Hiawatha National Forest headquartered in Escanaba. George has a farm on the Stonington Peninsula and knows the local area well. He was also a forester working the Rapid River area back in the mid-60's.

~Ron

Offline timberbeast

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Re: Looking for sawyer in U.P. of Michigan.
« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2002, 12:53:44 AM »
Dang,  Ron,  you hopped right on that one!! Thanks!  I could not remember his full name!  (Dean Francis).
He would most likely not remember me,  but I remember him and can vouch for his professionalism and honesty!
Serves me right for habitually giving away business cards when I only have one of each!
Where the heck is my axe???

Offline Paschale

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Re: Looking for sawyer in U.P. of Michigan.
« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2002, 04:49:28 PM »
Thanks for replying to my inquiry--I really appreciate it!  I'll be contacting Dean Francis and George McGlaugin towards summer, when I'll be able to return to the U.P.  Also, thanks for the info on birds-eye maple.  This was very informative.  Sorry for not thanking you all sooner--some ice took down my phone line, and I just got back online just yesterday, so I'm finally getting around to thanking you all for your advice and suggestions.
Y'all can pronounce it "puh-SKOLLY"


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