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Author Topic: To bark or not to bark  (Read 1524 times)

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Offline OlJarhead

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To bark or not to bark
« on: January 26, 2014, 09:52:53 PM »
I've been stripping bark off my firewood before bringing it in to burn.  I don't have great firewood up in these hills with Tamarack the best but nothing big enough to burn on my 20 acres, Doug Fir the second best but I'd rather mill it into lumber though I do buck up all small sections for firewood and finally I also burn a lot of Ponderosa Pine though I know it's probably the worst I can burn -- it does give off enough heat for me though, I just have to sweep the chimney often.

I'm just wondering how many burn the bark too and if not, how you remove it.

So far my best removal took is a Schrade hand ax
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Offline deerslayer

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Re: To bark or not to bark
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2014, 10:10:03 PM »
Burn the bark. It's all BTUs. I don't intentionally remove bark but if it's loose, I toss it aside but we have lots of wood available.
Too many chainsaws, not enough wood.
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Offline OlJarhead

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Re: To bark or not to bark
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2014, 10:14:06 PM »
I'm thinking that's probably best.  Though on the ponderosa it can be very thick and I think makes a lot of ash.  Either way, I'm tired of debarking! lol
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Offline giant splinter

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Re: To bark or not to bark
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2014, 10:24:00 PM »
I always stack the pine out of the way after it is split for year or longer, as it dries out the bark sort of removes itself to where its fairly easy to knock off. Pine burns best if its cured and by that time any bark thats left on it will burn easy, I use more red fir than anything else and it puts out a lot of BTU's, it also has thick bark and if left on the firewood you will have a lot of ash left behind so I try to remove it and shred it for spreading over dusty areas during the summer. I have had my best luck using a polaski type axe or an old pick axe has also worked for me, I also find that if the tree is green and healthy I have had fairly good luck using what is known as a Burke Bar to the construction industry and it makes removing bark a little bit less work but it is a task that never seems easy to get through.
roll with it

Offline OlJarhead

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Re: To bark or not to bark
« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2014, 11:09:39 PM »
Up hear it's pretty dry (about 14 inches of rain a year) and I find pine doesn't take to long to dry gets pretty light) and I only burn it when I can tell it's pretty dry but I remove the bark using my little shrade hand axe -- I think they call it their survival axe and I like it better than the Gerber my son left for me to use.  My fir is a bit wet still though getting there.  I'd it mostly has had a year for the oldest stuff to 3 months for the green stuff. 

I do however sometimes burn half the 'green' fir as it burns slower and keeps the stove going longer when I'm not here.  I read on Mother Earth News an article about living with firewood from a guy who lives years alone in Alaska and his theory was to have splits and rounds, green, half seasoned and seasoned wood as well as cold wood (from outside straight into the box) to burn -- all depending on what you want to achieve.

I use the driest splits I have to start the stove and get it really going, then when it is warm in the cabin and I have a good bed of coals I switch to rounds and if I want to prolong the burn since I don't need a lot of BTU's that's when I drop in some Fir that isn't completely seasoned.  I find this works well and I never have an issue with the thin bark on Fir but the pine bark can get almost an inch thick!

Plus, the bark makes a mess under the wood rack in the cabin.
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Offline r.man

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Re: To bark or not to bark
« Reply #5 on: January 26, 2014, 11:18:43 PM »
I burn all my bark. When the season is mostly over but I need some heat I will rake all the bark and bits up into shallow piles. After being in the sun for a day or so the piles get shoveled into the OWB for some spring heat. I would take free bark to burn if it was easy to handle and close to me.
Life is too short or my list is too long, not sure which. Dec 2014

Offline OlJarhead

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Re: To bark or not to bark
« Reply #6 on: January 26, 2014, 11:23:46 PM »
I never thought about chipping my bark up but then I don't have a chipper....hmmmm might have to put that on the wish list ;)

I should rent one though as I could have a LOT of much and road coverings for when it gets really dusty in the summer...and my apple trees might like the mulch
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Offline LeeB

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Re: To bark or not to bark
« Reply #7 on: January 26, 2014, 11:41:30 PM »
I try real hard to keep my barking under control. They tend to want to lock me up when I go to barking. I hate being put on a leash.  :D
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Offline beenthere

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Re: To bark or not to bark
« Reply #8 on: January 26, 2014, 11:54:28 PM »
 :D :D :D
south central Wisconsin
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