Cutting up a tree.

Discussion in 'Materials' started by cappedup, Jan 10, 2012.

  1. cappedup
    Joined: Jan 2012
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    Location: NYS

    cappedup New Member

    Hi there, first post, be gentle :)

    I'm a guy with a bunch of wood working experience, who has dreams of building a boat. How many times have you heard that!?

    I'll come back to the boat later.

    First question I have is about a beech tree I have leaning over the house. Its a lovely thing, about 26" in diameter, and i'm looking at getting it felled this year.

    a) Does anyone know of a service that will turn up, fell it, and turn it into planks that I can store until seasoned? All on site.

    b) If I get this done, is Beech any use in boat building terms? (it will get used eventually in 100 things the missus wants building!)

    c) Could I sell the timber at any decent profit?

    I'm about an hour North of NYC.

    I've been reading tons and tons, books and the net, including this great forum. I havnt decided on the boat i'd like to build although it could well involve an engine.

    I have a million questions, but will restrain myself for now.

    I might not even get started this year, I have to build my workshop first.

    Thanks in advance, and.. Hello!
     
  2. rasorinc
    Joined: Nov 2007
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    Location: OREGON

    rasorinc Senior Member

    Beech is very heavy and very dense. Looking at specific gravity it is questionable if it even floats. Not sure about the rot factor so look this chart over carefully. 26" tree won't have a lot of finished wood left over to sell after cutting and barking, etc. If it is not real rot resistant I would not use it for frames.http://www.connectedlines.com/wood/wood11.htm
    They list it as a hardwood and label it perishable so do not use it to make a boat.
     
  3. hoytedow
    Joined: Sep 2009
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    Location: North of Cuba

    hoytedow Bananas

  4. Landlubber
    Joined: Jun 2007
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    Location: Brisbane

    Landlubber Senior Member

    ...we have band saw slab cutters here, they run on a track, the saw blade is paraller to the trunk being cut. They work very well, creating slabs within 6mm,so that is pretty good.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AURsw2UAax0
     
  5. hoytedow
    Joined: Sep 2009
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    Location: North of Cuba

    hoytedow Bananas

    We have those here too.
     
  6. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Rent a "Saw Miser" and rough mill your own stock.
     
  7. Petros
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Location: Arlington, WA-USA

    Petros Senior Member

    This is a common issue around here, too often fine Sitka spruce or Alaska yellow cedar trees planted as landscaping many years ago get cut up for fire wood. It is a shame.

    If it has no rot resistance the wood is more valuable to sell for specialty trim or furniture manufacturing, or to hobby wood workers. You might even be able to find a local specialty wood dealer who will point you in the direction of a local sawer, check your phone book or internet. This wood is valuable for indoor use, it is very costly for hobby wood workers to buy. You might even consider putting an ad in the local Craig's list for it.

    If it is really leaning over your house do not hire a tree cutting service, they will cut it up into small pieces to get it down and you will have a big fat invoice to pay and a pile of fire wood. Find a sawer that knows the value of it whole, he will put lines and winches on it to force it to fall away from your house in one piece and have it hauled off to his mill.

    Sell the tree and buy what you need to build your shop. Than start looking around for trees in your area that are suitable for boat building.
     
  8. tunnels

    tunnels Previous Member

    Absolutly neat !! I saw one of those types of saws when i worked in Tahiti they anchored the log in the carrage stood on the back with a joystick and then ran past the saw blade , cut the log and then moved side ways and then retracted back for a second cut and moved to the exact thickness of the plank before .
    Could cut any thickness at all and any shaped log .
    They had logs with branchs and Y shaped that were the shape of the boat they were making !! They'ed cut 2 pieces ,one port ,one starboard . Was magic to watch and see them working with a adz shaping planks some 50 mm thick and using simple tools and simple methods handed down from the older guys that had been there all there lives .
    :D:p:)
     
  9. Frosty

    Frosty Previous Member

    I did'nt know you could cut up a tree. I thought you cut them down.
     
  10. tunnels

    tunnels Previous Member

    Silly boy frosty !!
    You have to cut the tree down so you can cut up the log OR
    you can chop the tree down so you can chop up the log up !!
    once you have chopped up the log or cut up the log that was a tree in the begining you then end up with lots of boards or planks and right at the end you will have a pile of saw dust that if you get in your eyes the will be sore ! .
    To much to think about !!:D
     
  11. Frosty

    Frosty Previous Member

    Yeah but how much wood can a wood cutter cut, if a wood cutter could cut wood?
     
  12. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Milling up your own wood can be economical, but you'll have a long wait, unless you take 1" lifts off the log, have it well stickered and force the ventilation issue. You might consider a trade, by rough milling what you have and trading for good seasoned stock.
     
  13. cappedup
    Joined: Jan 2012
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    Location: NYS

    cappedup New Member

    Many thanks for all those replies. i've found this place http://www.terrifictimbers.com/401.html and been emailing Dennis there. Sounds absolutly perfect for my needs. Although I have to get the tree on the ground without it landing on the house first. Need to find a tree felling service that can pull it the correct way.

    I am going to look into selling the lumber for a profit, all depends on the cost of getting it turned into planks, unless someone wants the full log! Otherwise I will keep it stacked and aired until its dry enough to use on all kinds of jobs - not boats though!

    Will post an update when I have one.
     
  14. hoytedow
    Joined: Sep 2009
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    Location: North of Cuba

    hoytedow Bananas

    The cutter-uppers will tell you it needs to be in pieces no shorter than 4 feet to properly rest in the cut cradle.
     

  15. Nick.K
    Joined: May 2011
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    Location: Ireland

    Nick.K Senior Member

    Beech is prety much useless on a boat, it is very prone to wood worm and rots easily.
    As Par says, it is important to stack the planks with plenty of ventilation between. The planks must be stored under cover but not a tarp which would probably cause them to rot.
    If the planks get wet during storage they waterstain badly under the stickers.
    An efficient way to dry the timber is to stack the planks in an open ended poly tunnel.
    I doubt it would be profitable to mill the wood with the intention to sell it, but it does make beautiful furniture once dry. Check the dryness with a meter before using it as it shrinks a lot!
    Nick.
     
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