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Author Topic: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?  (Read 1864 times)

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Offline oakiemac

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Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« on: January 07, 2020, 09:51:13 PM »
I have a fairly large white pine log about 10'x30" that I've left out in a field for about 2 years. I put in on the slabber yesterday and sawed a few slabs but it all looked like clear pine with no blue stain. Just wondering how long it usually takes or if white pine doesn't stain very well?

Don't do a lot with pine so I have little experience doing this. I do spalt sycamore and maple which usually take a few years.
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Offline WDH

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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #1 on: January 07, 2020, 09:55:56 PM »
Singing The Blue Pine Blues in General Woodworking

If you don't want to read the entire thread, start at reply #32. 
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Offline Southside

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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #2 on: January 07, 2020, 10:26:48 PM »
I have not had any luck with getting blue stain into white pine, does not seem to matter how long I let them sit.  Yellow pine on the other hand, especially this past year - not a problem to get stain.  
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Offline barbender

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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #3 on: January 07, 2020, 11:38:52 PM »
Only the sapwood will blue stain, and on a big log most of it is usually heartwood.
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2020, 07:01:08 AM »
I have a lot of dead standing white pine on my land. Well did have a lot, been using it for wood in my OWB. I have cut many, with no bark on them,small limbs have broken off, standing for I have no idea how many years, some only a foot across some more than 2 feet across. I have never seen any blue stain in them. There has been some on the ground for years, and still no blue stain. 
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2020, 07:03:15 AM »
Iíve been hit and miss, mostly miss, on blue stain, but from what Iíve learned, itís best you have a younger log with lots of wet sapwood, dripping sap, a hot and humid climate, and lay it in the hot and humid shade, not the sun because that starts to dry it out, and go buy a few chickens and have them poop on it.  That seems to be critical.  
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #6 on: January 08, 2020, 07:46:00 AM »
"Natural" blue comes from beetles introducing bacteria which travels horizontally through the tree which effectively shuts off the nutrient flow and kills the tree.  The beetles then feed off of whatever is produced during this bacteria activity.  It should be visible on the bucked end of the logs.

"Unnatural" blue is mildew and is completely different.  I have effectively produced it by dead stacking sawn lumber. 

I know nothing about White Pine nor now to introduce blue into an unsawn log.  I would think that dead stacking would work, but that is a guess.
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Offline moodnacreek

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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #7 on: January 08, 2020, 07:57:57 AM »
It is a struggle every year to have pine without blue stain. By late April any pine that is cut must be sprayed to prevent it. It is the sap wood that turns gray/blue and that is where the high grade is. Nobody really wants blue stain pine . Any clear is the first to be spoiled so any real profit is gone. There some years is a brown stain that doesn't look so bad although that is considered a defect also.

Offline Stephen1

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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2020, 08:37:37 AM »
Blue stain in EWP comes in hot humid weather, 80+F and the log needs to be fresh sawn. It will go through the sap wood overnight. Fresh sawn Dead stacked lumber in the same heat will get the same results. Letting a log sit for months or years, as you do for maple will not get blue pine.
Since the pine bore attacks a fallen pine within hours, I wonder if they bring the bacteria or fungi for the blue stain?
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2020, 10:24:31 AM »
Since the pine bore attacks a fallen pine within hours, I wonder if they bring the bacteria or fungi for the blue stain?
I see no way for beetles to introduce bacteria into a downed tree/log.  Yes they quickly go to work, but sap/moisture movement ceases when the tree is felled.


 
"Sawyers" are interested in laying eggs to produce young.  They munch, crunch, and bore pencil sized holes but do not produce blue.

After the tree is dead, it takes mildew to make blue. 
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2020, 01:07:30 PM »
Blue stain starts after the 'wood' reaches a certain temperature while at a certain moisture content. If the moisture content can be lowered before the 'wood' reaches, say, 50 degrees the stain will not happen. This is one of many reasons why the small time mill needs to saw as many logs in the fall and stick the lumber so that it will be too dry to stain when the temperature rises. Keeping logs cool gives more time to get them sawed but clean sawed boards can stain anyhow as they warm up if they are too wet inside. This one of the reasons to leave cut logs on the ground in the woods. The whole thing amounts to heat damage.

Offline tule peak timber

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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #11 on: January 08, 2020, 02:19:28 PM »
Yes !
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #12 on: January 08, 2020, 06:43:50 PM »
Thanks for the replies. Someone said that no one wants blue stain pine but I beg to differ. Lots of people want blue stained pine slabs, not sure about dimensional lumber.
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #13 on: January 08, 2020, 06:59:03 PM »
For wall paneling it is terrific...One of my kids in the pic. It is also number one for box beams and cabinet work.

 

 I use a LOT of blued pine.We laugh at how much blued pine we blow through each year...... :D :D :D :D
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #14 on: January 08, 2020, 07:00:23 PM »
I have an order in the kiln of it right now. It's like any other product, some love it, some hate it. 
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #15 on: January 08, 2020, 07:25:23 PM »
Thanks for the replies. Someone said that no one wants blue stain pine but I beg to differ. Lots of people want blue stained pine slabs, not sure about dimensional lumber.
In a pine mill it will go for pallet. Blue stained logs sell for 1/3 the price of fresh logs if they sell at all. If you saw much pine you will have blue stain weather you want it or not. I have never had anyone ask for it but they sure do refuse it.  Take a fresh log that has a white sap band and leave it in the sun and the ends will turn black. You can peel it and watch the stain grow. It may spiral crack with the bark off. After it all turns dark saw it.

Offline WV Sawmiller

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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #16 on: January 08, 2020, 07:38:00 PM »
   I don't saw an awful lot of pine and it has nearly all been white pine. Around here I can't imagine getting blue stained pine without a 3/8" diameter hole every few inches due to the borers.

    Does WP even blue stain or is that unique to yellow pine?
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #17 on: January 08, 2020, 08:25:37 PM »
I make a lot of BS from Ponderosa and Doug-Fir and it stains well as long as moisture stays present in the log--- our White Fir (pine) up here will rot before it stains.

Offline donbj

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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #18 on: January 08, 2020, 09:16:23 PM »
Another marketing name to steer away from the word stain, is denim pine. Seen it used up here.
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #19 on: January 08, 2020, 09:25:58 PM »
Our commercial sawmills will not accept blue nor dead/bark slipped logs which is why I saw so much beetle killed SYP.  Landowners are trying so salvage some value from their dead/dying trees/logs.  The great majority is sawn into framing lumber.
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #20 on: January 08, 2020, 10:59:12 PM »
  The fungus that causes blue stain feeds on the sap in the sap wood as far as I know. Would it be possible to mix up some kind of sugar water or other concoction similar to the sap that the blue stain fungus prefers, then spray it on the wood to increase/encourage the growth of the desired fungus? I assume someone with a scientific background in forestry/wood chemistry might be able to come up with a mix that would advantage the blue stain fungus over less desirable fungi and pests. Maybe advantaged enough to get the blue stain set in before the larger insects get to it. 
  It might also be possible to get some "active" fungus from sawdust of infected logs and "seed" it on to uninfected logs by mixing it with water and wiping it on. Could be worth a shot.

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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #21 on: January 09, 2020, 07:17:43 AM »



Table I built from blue stained pine I got from  @southside 
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #22 on: January 09, 2020, 07:31:00 AM »
  I don't saw an awful lot of pine and it has nearly all been white pine. Around here I can't imagine getting blue stained pine without a 3/8" diameter hole every few inches due to the borers.

    Does WP even blue stain or is that unique to yellow pine?
If it is in the true pine family it will stain unless it can be dried cool. The hard pines are worse and may mildew, turn black and grow white fuzz. They say it is the sugars that pine has.

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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #23 on: January 09, 2020, 07:59:18 AM »
I've actually had more luck blue staining white pine that SYP.  
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #24 on: January 09, 2020, 08:41:30 AM »

(Image hidden from quote, click to view.)

Table I built from blue stained pine I got from  @southside
That is a stunning table !!!!
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #25 on: January 09, 2020, 05:11:03 PM »
Thanks Tule Peak your comments means a lot to me , the stuff you build is incredible .
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Offline Southside

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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #26 on: January 09, 2020, 09:51:35 PM »
Gees - I thought he was talking about the sawyer side of things..... :D
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #27 on: January 11, 2020, 06:14:55 PM »
I am in south eastern NY in the Catskill mountains. If you leave the white pine logs in warm weather for a year or two most of it gets blue stain. I just cut some that was nice. I might have a picture. The pine borers are hit and miss. The old timers cut the pine in winter and milled it before it warmed up so it would be clear and without holes. 

Funny now folks like all the defects.

The white pine I cut at camp in the Adirondacks 200 miles north of here doesn't have blue stain that I have seen. The pine borers up there were so loud in the campfire wood pile you could hear them chewing away. 
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #28 on: January 11, 2020, 06:18:17 PM »
 

 

This log was 2 years old.
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #29 on: January 11, 2020, 10:57:27 PM »
You are right about the noise those pine bores make. I could even see the sawdust come out of the hole too. Kinda odd the way those critters know when you are cutting pine.
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #30 on: January 12, 2020, 02:34:34 AM »
Very inconsistent...hard for me to make money like that...I like them fresh felled.  Haven't had any problems selling non stained pine...plus blue stain = mold
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #31 on: January 12, 2020, 10:11:54 AM »
I rarely get to see fresh felled due to all the layers of bureaucracy here . I buy truck loads of logs that typically are sold as firewood - that is YEARS old and the bugs , blue stain, rot are well underway. Learning to make lemonade from lemons is the key......

 

 
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #32 on: January 14, 2020, 06:32:43 AM »
This 36" (butt end) eastern pine landed in my yard May 2018, snow white. 



 

In July 2019 I split it in half. You can see where the sap wood is blue. The beetle larvae were peppered throughout the sap wood.



 
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #33 on: January 14, 2020, 08:25:54 AM »
 

 
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #34 on: January 14, 2020, 08:35:08 AM »
I rarely get to see fresh felled due to all the layers of bureaucracy here . I buy truck loads of logs that typically are sold as firewood - that is YEARS old and the bugs , blue stain, rot are well underway. Learning to make lemonade from lemons is the key......


Pictures of beautiful work like this is why I don't let my wife look at these pages, I'd have to get a second or third job to pay for everything she wanted.
Nice work Tule Peak!!

The northwest coast (Wash. and OR.) love this wood and I've had guys from there asking how to make it happen more. With their humid environment it isn't hard for them.
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #35 on: January 14, 2020, 08:39:04 AM »
Thanks, and I'll point out that every single piece was run through one of your kilns ! So thank you......... :)
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #36 on: January 14, 2020, 07:07:12 PM »
I put the wp log back in the yard. I'll let it sit for another year and try again. I've had it of at least 2 years so I'm surprised it didn't blue any more than it did. It was laying in a field of tall grass so I'd think it would have plenty of moisture.

Loved those pictures of paneling and tables made of blue stained pine. Looks great.
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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #37 on: January 14, 2020, 08:55:11 PM »
I sawed these today.  Came from a churchyard across the road from my driveway.  Shortleaf yellow pine.  Died earlier this year.  It was right next to the main powerline, and the Electric Coop had a tree service take it down.  I saw them felling it, and offered to take the logs off their hands so that they did not have to chip them.  They were more than amenable. I just knew that it would be nicely blued.  It sure was ;D



 

Blue pine was over 10% of my sales in 2019, but that was an off year.  2018 was over 20%.  In 2017, I sold 10,000 bf of blue pine, but that is right after I had to clearcut a 30 year old plantation that had a root rot disease.  I lost about 175 trees that I salvaged before and after the stand was harvested (could not sell the dead trees, only the live green ones), so I sawed a whack of the dead trees so I had a whack of blue pine in 2017.  The logs came from this stand.  These trees died and blued on the stump.



 


I have two customers coming to get some in the next few days.  I am planning to make a couple of sliding barn doors with this batch. 
Woodmizer LT40HDD35, John Deere 2155, Kubota M5640SU, Nyle L53 Dehumidification Kiln, and a passion for all things with leafs, twigs, and bark.  hamsleyhardwood.com

Offline Kevin Wright

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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #38 on: January 22, 2020, 01:13:47 AM »
Hi Folks,

After Several months of cutting Ponderosa Pine in California my observations are that to introduce blue stain you should cover the boards with  sawdust from a blue stained log.  The sawdust is wet and sandwiched between the boards rapidly allows the fungus to grow and colonize the boards.
Discovered this when I didn't remove the sawdust from all the boards.

Stickered boards without sawdust did not develop blue stain.

Boards not stickered and stacked close with sawdust had much more blue stain. 

This is not that different than growing shitake mushrooms on log stacks.

Offline terrifictimbersllc

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Re: Anyone purposely blue stain pine logs?
« Reply #39 on: January 22, 2020, 01:34:04 PM »
Attachment below is a 1929 scientific article on blue stain which was posted in an earlier thread on the subject.

DJ Hoover, Terrific Timbers LLC,  Mystic CT Woodmizer Million Board Foot Club member. 2019 LT70 Super Wide 55 Yanmar,  LogRite fetching arch, WM BMS250 sharpener/BMT250 setter.  2001 F350 7.3L PSD 6 spd manual ZF 4x4 Crew Cab Long Bed


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