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Author Topic: Have you ever sawn lumber that was so pretty that you didn't want to sell it?  (Read 6294 times)

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Offline oakiemac

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This spring I got 3 cherry logs from a tree service. They were nice sized and straight but the bark and symetery of the logs was gnarly. I didn't think they would amount to much but when I started sawing I was in for a pleasant surprise because all 3 logs had the most beautiful curly cherry wood that I have ever seen. The wood has nice curl figure and the grain swirls through out most of the boards. :)
I'm not trying to brag about this wood because it had nothing to do with the sawyer. All credit goes to the Almighty Creator. I am just fortunate enough to be the first one to see it.

Well after drying it and storing for awhile, I got to seperating it out into 3 piles for customers. The problem was, I could hardly bring myself to sell it. I have never felt attatched to lumber before but this stuff is too nice to sell. I almost walked away and told the customers that I couldn't sell it, but  after a little thought I realized that with my inadequate skills that I could never do justice to this stuff. Wood like this needs to be in the hands of an experienced craftsman-not me.
The good news is that after filling the orders I still had 40bf left over. 8) I think I'm going to keep it until I'm a good enough woodworker to use it. I'm figuring that I'll have it at least another 20 years.
Mobile Demension sawmill, Bobcat 873 loader, 3 dry kilns and a long "to do" list.

Offline Patty

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We ran into the same situation. The wood was so beautiful when we opened up a log, that it was painful to sell it. I can sell equipment all day long, but the wood is a whole other beast. I now have a whole building full of lumber that I can't bear to part with in the hopes that someday I will become a good enough craftsman to take advantage of its beauty.
Women are Angels.
And when someone breaks our wings....
We simply continue to fly ........
on a broomstick.....
We are flexible like that.

Offline Timburr

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In this scenario, be totally selfish and keep the best pearls for your self :D ;D :D

With all that beautiful figured wood you'll become an experienced craftsman sooner than you think ;) and just think how many years of joy and pride it would give you, if you created a treasure out of your milling exploits. 8)

A few months ago, I put an extremely curly ash through the mill. The whole trunk had this very tight bubble like texture. There is no greater joy in the world than discovering grain beauty when opening up an ugly log.

Sense is not common

Kirk_Allen

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Since I was a hard core woodworker PRIOR to getting  my sawmill I have to say I totally understand. 

I have THOUSANDS of bf of lumber stored and I just cant seem to sell it.  Now I have folks who want to buy it, but I CANT sell it  ;D

I am letting some maple go next month that I thought I would never let go but since the price is right, off it goes.

I tend to keep more of my cherry, walnut, and sasafrass than any other species.  Still have the pile of Mulberry to mill up and may keep that depending on what it looks like.

The problem I have now is that I have more wood saved than I could ever use in my lifetime.  Its time to cull some of it out but I dont want to do that until I have the kiln built.  No sense it not getting the most out of it as possible.


Offline LeeB

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Wood working is a true joy. Start with lesser woods and practice, practice... Soon you will be good enough to do as the others said and create an hierloom piece of lasting quality. LeeB
'98 LT40HDD/Lombardini, Case 580L, Cat D4C, JD 3032 tractor, JD 5410 tractor, Husky 346, 372 and 562XP's. Stihl MS180 and MS361, 1998 and 2006 3/4 Ton 5.9 Cummins 4x4's, 1989 Dodge D100 w/ 318, and a 1966 Chevy C60 w/ dump bed.

Offline ohsoloco

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I have the same problem with exceptionally beautiful lumber...if you call that a problem  ;)  There's at least a thousand board feet of cherry stored in a shed, with a bunch of red oak slabs cut from a huge crotched trunk.  I'm still waiting for inspiration on what to build from the mass of walnut and cherry crotches I've sawn  :)

The same thing happens when I'm commissioned to build a piece of furniture...I could hardly bare to sell that cherry hutch  :-\

Offline Swing_blade_Andy

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I cut it two years ago.

I've still got the trunk and major limbs.

The minor limbs sold to the local antique resoration workshop.

Loads of 'craftsmen' have come to look. Most are legends in their own mind. None of them have a ghost of owning this black walnut.

My price is so high that only those who will attempt a masterpeice need apply.

Therefore its up to me to do it unless Viscount Lynnley gets one the phone.

http://gallery55364.fotopic.net/c148726.html

Andrew

Offline Ernie

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Thanks for the link Andrew, great pics

What have you covered your tunnel house with?
A very wise man once told me . Grand children are great, we should have had them first

Offline Buzz-sawyer

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Andy I brightened up this pic of yours .........Hope ya dont mind, this one seems to capture everyones imagination about your milling adventures ;)

    HEAR THAT BLADE SING!

Offline twoodward15

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Well, I guess I'll chime in here.  The sawyer I used to buy lumber from is 87 years old now.  I was buying from him in 2003 and 2004.  He does the same thing you guys are doing, only he did it 50 years ago.  He won't even let anyone look at his secret stash let alone sell it.  He's got lyme disease.  He can barely walk now.  It seems that for every day he works he is out of commission for at least a week sometimes up to a month.  It's a shame that he won't let go of the wood.  He has no relatives at all.  when he goes so does all of his wood and his old circle mill and tools.  Proceeds go to the state of New Jersey.  He says he has a bunch of 20 foot long pieces of cherry up to 16/4 and 24 inches wide.  Someone will go in and buy it for 25 cents a bdft in a couple years when he's gone. 
      I'm not saying sell your stash, because I have a stash too, but when you know you have too much to use, let some of it go to the RIGHT person.  Not necessarily the person with the most money, but someone that will make something unbelievable out of it.  It's hard, I know.  I hate to part with wood, but sometimes it needs to be done!!!!
   Why don't I buy from him anymore?  I think with this disease he's gone a bit bonkers.  He wants $7 a bdft for walnut.  Almost 3 times the going price around here.  All of his prices are twice the norm it seems, unless you need something thick or extremely wide. 
108 ARW   NKAWTG...N      Jersey Thunder

Offline oakiemac

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I think I will set aside a secret stash of  lumber just for me. Maybe someday I'll have the time and ability to put it to good use.
Mobile Demension sawmill, Bobcat 873 loader, 3 dry kilns and a long "to do" list.

Offline twoodward15

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No "maybes" Oakie, You'll get there sooner than you think!!!!  Think positive bud. 8)
108 ARW   NKAWTG...N      Jersey Thunder

Offline sawyerkirk

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Sawing stakes, we run into alot of beautiful lumber, occasionally I just can't bring myself to make it into stakes. One day I went to town and left the guys sawing, when I got back, the had sawn up a huge stack of tigerstripe maple into stake boards.

Offline RSteiner

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I had a similar experience this weekend.  I was sawing a few maple logs for a logger friend who kept these logs aside because he thought they might be curly.  Well they were.

At that point I wished these were my logs.  It was still nice to see that pretty wood appear and to know he wanted to make a dinning table out of it for his wife.


Randy
Randy

Offline crtreedude

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Okay, all come to the first official meeting of the Wood Hoarders Anonymous!

1. Once you start cutting a tree and see curly wood, can you not help yourself and have to keep transfering it to your pile - no matter how big the pile?

2. Even though it is going to require a new building soon that you will have to explain to your wife - do you continue to hoard beautiful wood hoping someday to use it for something?

3. Do you drag visitors to see you stash, exclaiming over how beautiful it is - and then refuse to sell any, no matter what is offered?

If so my brother, you have problem. I would say come to this group for help, but it doesn't seem like we know how to fix it....  :D

So, how did I end up here anyway?

Offline MemphisLogger

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When customers come in to get my good Cherry, Walnut or QS Oak, I tell 'em I reserve the right to retain any wood that strikes my fancy, and do.  :)

Then they usually start bidding up the price in an attempt to loosen my grip on the lumber.  :-\

Once they go over twice my usual price, I give it to 'em and go find another log  ;D 

 
Scott Banbury, Urban logger since 2002--Custom Woodworker since 1990. Running a Woodmizer LT-30, a flock of Huskies and a herd of Toy 4x4s Midtown Logging and Lumber Company at www.scottbanbury.com

Offline Curlywoods

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Where is Larry   :D  Just ask him what he does with his "pretty woods".  Did I mention to not ask to look in his attic!  :D  :D  :D
All the best,

Michael Mastin
McKinney Hardwood Lumber
McKinney, TX

Offline Gilman

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A couple of you mentioned you saw logs that you suspected to have curl.  Does anyone have pictures of these logs?  I need them for future reference.  I want to make sure I start getting giddy in time.
WM LT70, WM 40 Super, WM  '89 40HD
Cat throwing champion 1996, 1997, 1999. (retired)

Online Larry

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Mike, I wish you wouldn’t mention the “attic” on a public forum...ya know how crazy woodworkers can get if they think you are holding out on them. :D ;D :D ;D :D ;D
Larry, making useful and beautiful things out of the most environmental friendly material on the planet.

We need to insure our customers understand the importance of our craft.

Offline Daren

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"Wood hoarders anonymous" I think I belong there. It is just such addiction when you know you will never see another piece of wood like that again (even if you have a shed full already). I have a decent stash and do some woodworking. I bet I have GIVEN almost as much "stash wood" to guys who can make something beautiful from it and show it to me than I have sold to guys who come around  with a pocket full wanting  "something neat to play with".
Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.


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