Frequently Asked Questions
Your Timber Or Mine?
If you are trying to decide between using a tree, logs, or other raw wood source that you have and lumber that I have available, here are a few thoughts that might help you:
- Nostalgia: Does your wood source have any sentimental value to you? Grampa's tree, the tree you planted as a kid, or timbers from uncle's barn. If it does, use it.
- Time: How soon do you want to be able to build a project with the wood? If you have enough time to complete the drying process, use your supply. If your time frame for building is short, use my material that is already kiln dried.
- Quantity: How much wood do you need or want? If your project requires only a small amount of material, use my stock that is ready to go. If you need a large quantity and have it available, or if you need unusual sizes, use your logs.
- Size: Does your wood supply match your wants? 12" wide fully quarter sawn boards do not come out of 17" diameter logs. 38" wide table top slabs do not come out of 24" diameter logs. It sounds too simple, but do you want black walnut and all you have are pine and red oak logs? You get the idea now.
- Logistics: Do you have a place to properly sticker and protect your cut lumber while it is drying? The best sawing job can be ruined by poor stickering conditions. If you don't have a good place for stickering, we can still use your wood and put it thru my dry kiln. If you have provisions for good stickering, it will save you money, inspire your project thinking and probably smell good.
- Application: Everybody has unique circumstances that influence their decision making on which process suits them best. If you desire something you think is unusual, abnormal, weird, too big, too small, call me, I'll be happy to help, I love a challenge.
Three Things I Do Not Do
- I do not take trees down–it is not my area of expertise.
- I do not clean up after tree removals.
- I do not buy standing timber.
What Is My Tree Worth?
Most yard trees, including black walnut, are not worth anything as a standing tree until they are taken down and turned into lumber. The cost of equipment and personnel for tree removal normally exceeds the value of the lumber within the tree. However, the value of the tree to the owner often exceeds so-called market value.
Commercial timber buyers like to fill at least a couple of semi trucks with logs in order for them to justify the cost of a cutting crew. In other words, they will not even look at yard trees.
In addition, trees in a yard, next to a house, or along the lot line, have a 90% chance of having nails, screws, clothesline hooks, porcelain insulators, and other assorted hardware in them. Non-wood items damage saw blades, ruin lumber, and take extra time to deal with.
Do I Buy Logs?
I will sometimes purchase logs that are delivered to me and meet my current specs. Always call and ask questions. Logs cannot be from commercial harvest operations, they must be what I consider reclaimed.
What is reclaimed timber?
Wood that is recovered from a tree that is removed for reasons other than its lumber value. In other words, the timber comes from building sites, storm damage, road expansions, yard clearings, homeowners, tree services, and old barn wood.
Species commonly found in Southeast Michigan
Red and White Oak, Sugar Maple, Silver Maple, Osage Orange, Weeping Willow, Black Walnut, Honey Locust, Black Locust, Elm, Sycamore, Box Elder, Cherry and sometimes Spruce, Pine or Ash.