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Author Topic: Red Pine vs Spruce?  (Read 3021 times)

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Offline shortaction

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Red Pine vs Spruce?
« on: January 23, 2018, 08:02:03 PM »
Hi everyone, I bought a mill (Little Blue from Pascal Metals) in the fall and have cut a bit of eastern white cedar with it.  Enjoying it immensely. 

I'm going to build a pole barn this summer and have access to some Red Pine 16' with 12 - 16" tops at a good price.  How is it for framing materials, mainly rafters and beam, plates.  There is some spruce available as well but it is fairly knotty. 

Also want to cut some 8"x8"x 11' for the posts sitting on concrete sonotubes about 8-12" above the ground, I have some tamarack I was thinking would be good for that, any other suggestions would be appreciated. 

I live in central/northern Ontario.

Really enjoy all the interesting threads and good knowledge on here.

Thanks in advance.

Todd

Offline 47sawdust

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2018, 08:20:45 PM »
The red pine should work well for you.The spruce here in Vermont can be a challenge to saw.Wavey cuts.Some saw it frozen with better results.I don't know how the tamarack would behave as an 8x8,in board form it will twist badly if not well secured.
 You might save yourself some grief and just use the red pine.My brother's implement shed is built entirely from red pine harvested and sawn from our property.

Best of luck to you.
Mick
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Offline Chuck White

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #2 on: January 23, 2018, 10:18:57 PM »
Welcome to the Forestry Forum, shortaction!

For strength, The Spruce is first, then the Tamarack, then the Red Pine!

If you use the Red Pine for framing, don't go with 2X4, go with 2X6 or larger!
~Chuck~
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Offline petefrom bearswamp

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #3 on: January 24, 2018, 08:45:57 AM »
x2 Chuck
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Offline york

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #4 on: January 24, 2018, 09:18:04 AM »
All the Red Pine that i have milled over the years and lots of it,would twist,hate the stuff....
Also,it is not decay resistant....Do you have any Hemlock???
Albert

Offline barbender

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #5 on: January 24, 2018, 09:49:47 AM »
Old growth and natural regen red pine is a different animal from plantation stuff. Natural grown is denser, heavier, and stronger than plantation wood.
Too many irons in the fire

Offline KamHillbilly

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #6 on: January 25, 2018, 05:46:20 PM »
I sawed some 6x6 tamarack last summer seems to be doing well definitely going to need something to move them when green those 8x8 x 11' are going to be heavy.what part of northern Ontario
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Offline petefrom bearswamp

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #7 on: January 25, 2018, 06:31:10 PM »
No old growth or very little natural Regen here in NY.
have sawed some rp plantation and  made t&g paneling which my son has in his house it looks great.
Also OK for 2x4 and 2x6 stud which only need strength in compression
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Offline shortaction

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #8 on: January 25, 2018, 07:29:57 PM »
Thanks for the replies, everyone.  I think I'll go with the red pine as it will make fairly clear lumber.  Not sure what to use for the posts, don't like the idea of the red pine for there as someone mentioned, it isn't the most decay resistant.

Hemlock is not on the menu right now, but maybe I should ask some other bushwhackers if they can get me a few decent logs just for the posts. 

The rafters will be 2x8 with a 12' span on 24" o/c and I'll put an 8' collar tie in as well.

Offline shortaction

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #9 on: January 25, 2018, 07:36:58 PM »
I sawed some 6x6 tamarack last summer seems to be doing well definitely going to need something to move them when green those 8x8 x 11' are going to be heavy.what part of northern Ontario

I have a tractor with a front end loader to help with the heavy stuff.  I live just outside of Gore Bay, on the Manitoulin Island in the northern part of Lake Huron.  Good to hear about the tamarack.  If I wait until the sonotubes are poured, then saw the 8x8's and get them up with the plates and braces right away, hopefully that will stop them from twisting.

Offline Chuck White

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #10 on: January 25, 2018, 08:34:03 PM »
I like the idea of nailing Tamarack when it's green!   ;)
~Chuck~
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Offline thecfarm

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #11 on: January 25, 2018, 09:29:19 PM »
I had some red pine,no idea the same kind as yours. I was not impressed by it. I saw some 8x8 out and they twisted on me. I went back to hemlock.
I only cut spruce once. That takes a special band. I don't have a special band. That stuff went into the brush pile and every time I drove by it,it would wave at me.  :o
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Offline loganworks2

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #12 on: January 25, 2018, 10:11:43 PM »
Nice area shortaction. The red pine will do just fine as posts as long as it is not in ground contact or constantly getting wet. I lived in Kentbridge Ontario when I was a kid and used to go to Manitoulin island fishing and camping at the campground on the south end of Manitoulin lake. We also spent a lot of time fishing at and around Emerald lake north east of Sudbury. This was in the late 60s the road to Emerald lake was just a goat path.

Offline 47sawdust

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #13 on: January 26, 2018, 06:10:13 AM »
I visited Manitoulin with my wife 10 years ago.Her family used to go to a summer cabin on the North side of the island.I really enjoyed it.
As for as the red pine goes,treat the posts w/a preservative,I use old motor oil,keep it off the ground.If using for rafters or beams oversize it or make the spacing smaller.My brother's shed has 4x4's for post, nothing larger than larger than a 2x6 for framing.It has no big spans.I have had some twisting of the stuff I've sawn,after it was stacked and air dried.I was disappointed.Might be my sawing technique,might be internal stress or the nature of the wood.
Mick
1997 WM Lt30 1999 WM twin blade edger Kubota L3750 Tajfun winchGood Health Work is my hobby.

Offline shortaction

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #14 on: January 26, 2018, 02:03:27 PM »
Where would a fellow find a chart for lumber that has the strength of different varieties of wood? 

Offline barbender

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #15 on: January 26, 2018, 06:49:36 PM »
If Red Pine is clear it's a quite strong softwood. I don't understand all the calls for oversizing it.
Too many irons in the fire

Offline Gearbox

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #16 on: January 26, 2018, 07:13:32 PM »
Depending on the nominal size you will already be oversized if it is not planed . Steel roof ? If you do make it a dark color so the snow slides faster . Every building I have seen that went down from snow load was a white roof .
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Offline Chuck White

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #17 on: January 26, 2018, 08:56:28 PM »
barbender, the reason I recommend oversizing Red Pine is because unless you get some really big RP, you'll have the whorls of limbs circling the log, to close together and therefore making a weak spot where the lumber is likely to crack or break!

The oversizing just adds a little meat to the material!  ;)
~Chuck~
Retired USAF 1989, Retired School Bus Driver 2012, now semi-retired Mobile Sawyer, 2018 Silverado 4X4
1995 Wood-Mizer LT40HDG25 Kohler - Cooks Cat Claw Sharpener and single-tooth setter, 4-foot Logrite cant hook.
Basic mechanical skills are all that's required to maintain a Wood-Mizer

Offline barbender

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #18 on: January 26, 2018, 11:21:06 PM »
I agree Chuck, when using small diameter, young logs. But that would be true of any species. You NE guys give Red Pine a bad rap, it's our bread and butter 😊😊
Too many irons in the fire

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Re: Red Pine vs Spruce?
« Reply #19 on: January 26, 2018, 11:21:47 PM »
BTW, happy birthday, Chuck!
Too many irons in the fire


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