Thursday, November 8, 2007


Thanks for the good questions on the last entry. Your questions help inspire new posts, so unless you want to hear about my breakfast, keep em coming!
I generally cut off any part of the butt end that flares dramatically. It just isn't worth the hassle and the tensions can be unpredictable and a pain to split. To preserve the oaks, I seal with anchor seal right after cutting. Unless the cut is fresh, the sealer doesn't work, microcracks set in too quickly. I then try to keep pieces as large as possible until I use them. If they get too small, I sink them in my pond.Yes, I have had to dive in to get some wood that slipped out of the rope and pick off a leech or two!
My main storage strategy is to keep the wood close to the ground and out of the sun. Oak can keep this way for years.

The maple starts to rot too quickly during the summer months so I split it into turning size bolts and keep it in the freezer, next to the banana bread.

The idea with an easy spoiling wood like maple or hickory is to keep it wet enough so that it won't crack but not so wet that it rots on you. I no longer worry whether my maple stays green for turning. I would rather it dry out and deal with turning being less fun than risk it rotting. Another benefit is that air dried maple shrinks less after turning.

Luckily, I go through logs fast enough that I don't have many storage issues. The oak log that I just bought has some unfortunate knots that weren't visible until I split it. I still expect to get at least 10 to 15 chairs from it.

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