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Author Topic: Sawmilling Ceder Trees.  (Read 2934 times)

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Offline macurtis

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Sawmilling Ceder Trees.
« on: May 05, 2002, 10:43:47 AM »
I had a guy to call me about sawmilling some large ceder
trees. These trees have been cut for 2 yrs. Can this be
done and what would be the best procedure.
Thanks for any info.

Offline Bibbyman

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Re: Sawmilling Ceder Trees.
« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2002, 03:08:48 PM »
If they are large and have thin sap then they are probably good to saw.  The sapwood (white) is probably rotten but the heartwood will last for years.  May have to make thick slabs to get past the rotten sapwood.  The wood will be hard – especially the knots.  Point the little end of the log towards you as this helps with the problem of the blade rising over the knots to a minimum.  


For one reason or another,  most of the cedar we saw for people are past their prime.  Some just don’t get around to it – others think logs need to dry before they are sawn.

Oh yes,  one other thing that you’ll “come to know”:  When someone tells you the size of their logs,  they generally don’t give you a good answerer.  I’ve had one person tell me that all his cedar trees were 4’ around.  Went to look at them and it turned out to be a pasture full of cedar sprouts about head tall.  He was referring to the whole tree – limbs and all.  Many time people tell you they’ve got logs such and such size.  Turns out,  that was the dimension on the butt – not on the little end.
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Offline ARKANSAWYER

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Re: Sawmilling Ceder Trees.
« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2002, 06:35:23 AM »
What Bibbyman said will be Gospel.  Bugs will eat up the sap wood and if they have been damp the white wood will be mush.  Any log under 8 inches on the small end will not be worth sawing unless they want a 4x4.  It will still smell nice and if they want it 1/2 inch thick count it as 1 inch thick in your tally or you will be there all day trying to get 500 bdft.
ARKANSAWYER
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Offline BRP

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Re: Sawmilling Ceder Trees.
« Reply #3 on: May 06, 2002, 09:29:14 PM »
What the guys say is true.Look close at the butt of the log for heart rot.This usually goes all the way up in a log 20'' dia and up and an old tree.At least thats what I find here in AR.

Offline Cedar Eater

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Re: Sawmilling Ceder Trees.
« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2002, 10:20:56 PM »
Red cedar or white cedar? When I find heart rot on a white cedar, I cut two feet off the butt and look again. I repeat until I get salable wood and the 2 foot chunks get burned in my uncle's outdoor wood stove. Sometimes a 4" diameter heart rot is gone within 4'.
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Re: Sawmilling Ceder Trees.
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2002, 06:04:54 AM »
Red cedar is what we have here.The rot might be very slight which is not a problem for beams and post.Most customers say saw it anyway.

Offline Bibbyman

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Re: Sawmilling Ceder Trees.
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2002, 06:23:59 AM »
About once a month a customer will bring us logs that are not worth the trouble to saw and won't make what they want.  I tell them so but they will say "Well, saw them anyway."    ::)

Last weekend I spent off and on about 6 hours sawing out a about 200 BF of junky cedar (rot in the butts,  deep seams, crooked,  too small for what they wanted out of them,  been laying around a couple of years,  not cut to length, not trimmed - the works. :o) for a guy that said "Well, saw them anyway."  

It's about convinced me to tell the next guy with stuff like this to take them on down the road.
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Offline BRP

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Re: Sawmilling Ceder Trees.
« Reply #7 on: May 07, 2002, 07:00:54 AM »
Been there done that.I don't like those jobs any more than you do.Almost every time I do a job for the first time with junk logs,the customer calls me back and has nice logs waiting.A lot of people down here don't know what a bandsaw is capable of and once I show them they are pleased and gear up for the next call.If I tell them no,I lose a customer,word of mouth,cash flow.I'm a one man band and don't have the luxury to say no and besides it always works out in the end. ;)

Offline timberbeast

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Re: Sawmilling Ceder Trees.
« Reply #8 on: May 07, 2002, 10:13:07 PM »
Cedar Eater be talking the gospel on white Cedar with the heart rot.  Sometimes two feet will clear the log.  Lots of kindling for me!  I've had logs over 4 years old that have produced great lumber,  as well.  Must not have as many bugs in the northern climes.  The worst,  though,  is throwing a big ole Cedar log on the mill,  solid at butt and end,  and seeing bright orange sawdust flying out near the middle,  and carpenter ants scurrying everywhere!  AAAUUGHHHH!!!!
Where the heck is my axe???


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