Monday, September 9, 2013

Bye bye butternut

Since we began this effort in 2004 we have come across exactly ONE butternut log. Apparently it does not grow naturally around here; thanks to whoever planted the one way back when. We had it sawn and just now sold the last of the lumber.

My only point - and you already knew this - is that if and when you come across some special wood, hoard it. Many of us already do this but I am surprised how many have spare bedrooms that are NOT filled with lumber. Kidding. Sorta.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Live edge material

We have always tried to have a few pieces of live edge material available - I rarely see this kind of stuff around town - and recent response has encouraged us to saw even more. I thought I'd show you what we now have in larger unique pieces.

These are longer walnut pieces with some curve to them. I could see two of them book matched and straight line joined for table top, or perhaps a set of shelves with a natural bow front. The water stains plane off. The narrow one in front is one of the first slabs; they get wider towards the center of the log.


Here are some cherry pieces, some with crotch figure at the end:


These walnuts have some straight edges simply because they were too wide to fit on the saw without trimming. That figure at the end will finish up nicely. Ash on the right.



We have a number of cherry pieces air drying, some fairly short and a log's worth of longer pieces that will take a while yet to dry but I expect to be worth the wait: crotchy with bark on both edges if I recall correctly.

Don't forget our smaller crotch pieces. These are what I would reach for if I wanted to resaw my own figured panels for a frame and panel piece. Below them are some mantle pieces in cherry and walnut. None of these are kiln dried.



We may have located a new sawyer and this is an area we will building up over time, so stay tuned.

Monday, June 3, 2013

News update

We are well into solar kiln season; we just pulled our second load out this past weekend. It was nearly all 5/4 and 6/4 white oak for those craftsman era projects that want 1" + thick finished wood. Lots of quartersawn and riftsawn white oak in different thicknesses is now available in the sale bins.

Recent visitors may have noticed that we are beefing up our inventory of natural edge slabs. We now have thick pieces of cherry, walnut, ash, butternut, and maybe one or two more species for table tops of unique character. We also have some large half log crotches that we could saw a piece off of for you:



I am now making a bench/table using one of these walnut crotch pieces and it is a very rewarding milestone to reach in one's woodworking career. Since the piece is over 36" wide the tool of choice for flattening the slab (short of taking it to a commercial place like Crescent Planing Mill or Fehlig Brothers*) is a hand held power planer. This is my first time using one and it is a real time saver. Final finishing still belongs with hand planes and sandpaper. There are photos of this finished piece and many others of our wood on the Gallery 2013 page.



* A customer of ours recently took two large natural edge cherry slabs to Fehlig and got them both planed for something like $25. He noticed the problem with this bargain later in the shop: the wood was surfaced alright but NOT JOINTED. The boards did not sit flat on the base. Wrestling this kind of material certainly presents challenges!

One other news item: our sawyer sold his saw. John had been sawing our lumber for the past few years and we will certainly miss his quarter sawing ability. He was clearly the best we have ever had at getting a large percentage of beautiful QS material from a log. If you have ever looked around town at what passes for QS white oak and compared it to our QSWO bin, you know what I mean. Meanwhile, if you know of any local sawyer who is looking for some regular work, please shoot me an email at lumberlogsllc AT g mail DOT com.


Tuesday, February 5, 2013

still sawing

In the sort of progress that is hard to notice unless you look very carefully, we continue to fill up the air drying section of our inventory. We just stacked some nice wide walnut and some spalted sycamore plus some honeylocust boards that would make a spectacular table top:



 Here's hoping we get many warm sunny days this summer for running wood through the kiln. With the larger capacity racks in the building, it should be even more difficult to not find what you want as we fill them up.

We have been sawing a number of thick mantle pieces too, from walnut, cherry and oak. These pieces will not be kiln dried and should offer the kind of character that a nice mantle piece needs.

The band saw is out for repair. It has never been quite right and needed a larger motor for the wide band. Once it returns, we ought to be able to trim and stack some wood that got set aside when we moved. In short, between the sawing and the ability to trim, I am excited about our lumber inventory for the coming year!