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Thread: Backyard Maples and Saving the Lumber

  1. #1
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    Backyard Maples and Saving the Lumber

    I have 5 maple trees that will be cut down shortly. 2 are growing out of one base, and 3 are growing out of the other. Each trunk is about 2' in diameter. And FWIW I'm not cutting them down for sport; they are quite close to the house, leaning over the house, and have large portions already broken off.

    I have 2 questions:

    1. The 3 trees growing out of one base have a giant base mound that is about 6' in diameter and about a foot off the ground before the 3 trees grow out separately. Is there usable wood in this mound close to the ground?

    2. How do I calculate if it's worth trying to save the lumber and get someone with a portable sawmill to come out and cut up boards properly?

    Thanks always.
    AKA Young Grasshopper Woodworker
    AKA The Rookie

  2. #2
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    Pictures would help Cynthia

    Some of the others here with portable mill experience will chime in, but if you can do it I think it is worth it, you need a good spot to keep it for a few years, and there is some work involved, but if you can do it I say go for it!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  3. #3
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    I think you need to get the opinion and a quote from a portable mill operator in your area. Here is a link to:

    The Vancouver Island Association of Wood Processors directory. They have portable sawmill operators on the list.

    You are on Vancouver Island now, right?
    “When love and skill work together, expect a masterpiece.” - John Ruskin
    “Nowadays people know the price of everything and the value of nothing.” - Oscar Wilde

  4. #4
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    need pics cynthia
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  5. #5
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    Thanks Bill, I will. Okay okay okay, here are photos:

    The 3 sisters:
    Click image for larger version. 

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    The 2 brothers:
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    Why they're coming down:
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Click image for larger version. 

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    AKA Young Grasshopper Woodworker
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  6. #6
    the picture said triple but I counted 4 or 5 trees-this tree will make a good table-top

  7. #7
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    cynthia i would agree with bill on gettin in touch with a sawyer on this but you do have some lumber there,, your only looking at 5 logs that are real decent the second logs in your trees are pretty knotty.. and maple should be kiln dried to keep the white color also this time of year is bad for cuttin maple, it likes to sour easy with the sap up ,,they generally cut maple in the late fall or winter.
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  8. #8
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    I can't speak toward flat lumber, but it looks like some nice turning blanks where the trees are joined near the ground. Consider saving some of those pieces that won't make it to the mill anyway. If you aren't a turner, coat them with some anchor seal and sell them on eBay.

  9. #9
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    First, Ray, the triple is 3. There's a little deformed fir on the right that's coming down too. It's stunted because of growing up against those maples. Otherwise those 3 coming out of the mound look like more, but it's only 3.


    Quote Originally Posted by larry merlau View Post
    cynthia i would agree with bill on gettin in touch with a sawyer on this but you do have some lumber there,, your only looking at 5 logs that are real decent the second logs in your trees are pretty knotty.. and maple should be kiln dried to keep the white color also this time of year is bad for cuttin maple, it likes to sour easy with the sap up ,,they generally cut maple in the late fall or winter.
    Larry, what does this mean in little words? What color would it be if I air dried it? What does sour mean? The one that's knotty might not be great for boards, but I could use it for something else, though, no? Is it important that I not cut them until Fall? Any of these may fall before Fall. Pun intended.
    AKA Young Grasshopper Woodworker
    AKA The Rookie

  10. #10
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    Close to the house. I hope this is not a do it yourself project taking those down. The risk to the house calls for professionals with insurance.
    Others have pitched in with sound advice. Although I echo the great possibilities for turning wood from the bases.
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

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