Ice storm tree down

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Mike N
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Ice storm tree down

Post by Mike N »

Literally got back from balmy Florida late Wednesday and woke up this Friday morning to an ice storm power outage and 100’ cherry tree smack dab across the driveway.






Unfortunately, my chainsaws were in a storage cabin below the house with a garage door that required…working electricity to open. Called a buddy with a chainsaw and waited for my son to get off work and…





And after a bit of seasoning and a trip through the log splitter, that cherry tree will provide a nice fire…
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john elder
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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by john elder »

Oh, crap!!! What a waste of. CHerry! You should get someone over there with a Wood Mizer and resaw 6’ slabs to sticker!
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Mike N
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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by Mike N »

john elder wrote: Fri Feb 04, 2022 8:13 pm Oh, crap!!! What a waste of. CHerry! You should get someone over there with a Wood Mizer and resaw 6’ slabs to sticker!
I’ve done that with a few over the years. A portable sawmill is on the wish list…


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Midway Tommy D
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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by Midway Tommy D »

Shame to cut that nice trunk up into 16" pieces. It would have made a great furniture or cabinet stock pile. Don't see many nice straight logs like that these days.
Love those Open Face Spinning Reels! (Especially ABU & ABU/Zebco)

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Mike N
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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Midway Tommy D wrote: Sat Feb 05, 2022 12:07 am Shame to cut that nice trunk up into 16" pieces. It would have made a great furniture or cabinet stock pile. Don't see many nice straight logs like that these days.
Hey, thanks for the advice. In fact, the next time one of these 7-ton beauties falls on my driveway in a sub-zero ice storm, I’ll shoot you an email and you can come and take the whole tree, no charge.

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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by john elder »

Mike lashes out!! :shock: :D
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Mike N
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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by Mike N »

john elder wrote: Sat Feb 05, 2022 2:39 pm Mike lashes out!! :shock: :D
And as for you Dr. Baits, I shipped you a 10’ frozen black cherry branch packed in ice, COD, freight collect. You’ll be turning more knobs than a WWII radioman. 8) :D
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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by Midway Tommy D »

john elder wrote: Sat Feb 05, 2022 2:39 pm Mike lashes out!! :shock: :D
Evidently I nicked a chord (or cord :) ). Sorry 'bout that. :o
Love those Open Face Spinning Reels! (Especially ABU & ABU/Zebco)

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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by Mike N »

We got a nice break in the weather with temperatures in the mid-60s….that’s 4” of sawdust from the chainsaw in the grass, not snow.


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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by Mike N »

Also had several trees down at the ponds and cabin and spent the weekend cleaning up that mess…



When I cut a main branch off one downed tree, it literally stood right back up as the root ball slid back into its hole, like a drawbridge. (Next photo top left.) It was a bit sketchy to be standing right below it in the entry spillway with a running chainsaw.



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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by Mike N »

I wanted to mention a few tools that make bucking up a log into rounds much easier.

First, here is a gadget used to measure where to cut to keep the rounds at equal lengths (I like to cut firewood to 16” length to fit into my wood burner insert of my fireplace.) The heavy magnet end is attached temporarily to the chainsaw bar. The disc on the end of wand is set at 16” and you make your marking cuts and then detach it for the real cuts. I use one, but this photo is from eBay.



I used this peavey yesterday to turn and lift the log so my chain does not get dull by contacting the ground.


These log tongs make lifting the rounds into the wagon a one hand task.

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Re: Ice storm tree down

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Got out the 30-ton splitter and brought the first face cord of firewood up to the house to season for next year. I took the time to split it thin so it drys and then lights quicker unlike the large logs a lot of services deliver. Making lemonade from the lemons the ice storm brought. About 60% was red oak; 20% cherry; and 20 % maple. There were some hickory rounds, too.




A “face cord” is a stack of splits 4’ x 16” x 8’. Three face cords equal one cord. It took about 10% of all the ice storm rounds (driveway and pond) to get this face cord, so it looks like the total yield will be 3-4 cords of wood, or about 10 cut stacks like this.





This pickaroon saved a lot of bending when loading the splitter.
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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by Mike N »

According to the US Department of Agriculture, “The dense wood of eastern hardwoods -- such as hickory and oak -- rivals coal in heat values. One ton of anthracite coal produces 26 million BTUs of heat. Hickory produces 28 million BTUs of heat per cord and red oak 24.6 BTUs/cord. One cord equals 128 cubic feet of wood (4'x4'x8' stack).”

I saw one source that indicates that in a cold climate it takes 85 million BTUs a year to heat a well-insulated two-story 2100 sq ft house with gas appliances. So, that’s equal to about 3-1/2 cords of hardwood.
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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by kyreels »

Save that Hickory for the smoker/cooker. Love a good pork butt smoked in Hickory.
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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by Mike N »

kyreels wrote: Sun Mar 06, 2022 3:58 pm Save that Hickory for the smoker/cooker. Love a good pork butt smoked in Hickory.
Matt, in fact this upcoming Saturday my son and I and some of his friends will be making some fresh Polish kielbasa. I’ll take my smoker and some of the hickory and see how it turns out.
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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by Mike N »

Nice warm sunny Sunday afternoon so this pile of rounds…




Turned into this stack of firewood…



And the path to the pond dam is now clear…



Next up when I get a chance are these logs from the trees that feel next to the small trout pond on the other side of the cabin…






One hold up was a flat on the Massey-Ferguson tractor over the winter. My buddy fixed it today.



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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by Mike N »

Stacked that pile of splits after work today. Since it’s a 10’ rack, those rounds on the pond dam split up as a bit over two face cords adding in the face cord I took up to the house.



Last edited by Mike N on Wed Mar 16, 2022 9:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by arley »

Mike- Regarding the fresh kielbasa - when is the first seating and is it byob?
you can tune a piano,but you can't tuna fish.
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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arley wrote: Sat Mar 12, 2022 3:01 pm Mike- Regarding the fresh kielbasa - when is the first seating and is it byob?
Lol. Friends always welcome. I’ll start a new thread…
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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About done splitting all the fallen timber by the ponds, so I brought the 30-ton splitter up the cabin road to the driveway to start on the original rounds from the big tree shown above. Did leave a nice branch and twig pile behind for the birds and rabbits.






I always insert a wedge of wood in the log table to keep big splits on standby from rolling off.


As I’ve posted here before, I’m an axe snob and love Swedish steel. While my limbing axe is a Gransfor Bruk, I keep a small Hults Bruk by the splitter to dispatch those pieces of oak etc. that don’t want to come apart in the splitter.


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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by Mike N »

We had nice weather the past 2 days and with daylight savings time and a late dinner, I got about 3 hours in each day after work splitting and stacking. The large stack of cherry rounds is getting smaller.



Last edited by Mike N on Wed Mar 23, 2022 12:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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Usually I would wait a few weeks before I covered the top only (never the sides for air flow) of the stacked firewood with a long tarp I cut into 30”sections, but heavy rain is predicted the next two days. I try to mound the center of each firewood stack a bit higher to allow water runoff. Cherry dries pretty fast and it will all be below 20% moisture content (the accepted threshold for seasoned wood) by the end of October. I use a $19 moisture meter with prongs that stick into the firewood. The small cement patio shown was built to stack firewood and is on the West side of my house so it gets the direct afternoon and evening sun.

After trying many types of tarp tie-downs I finally got a few dozen masonry bricks with core holes and connected pairs together with parachute cord. I sling them over each side of the tarp and and they withstand the strongest winds and remove easily for access when the tarp is covered with snow. Look closely at the end of the nearest stack in the photo below and you can see the masonry bricks hanging.

I’d say I’m about halfway through the stack of rounds along the driveway, but my son and I are going to a couple of all-star high school wrestling events Wednesday and Friday (the Dapper Dan in Pittsburgh where the Pennsylvania state champions wrestle a USA all-star team from the other 49 states. It’s known as the Rose Bowl of high school wrestling.)


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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by Robin Sayler »

Looking good Mike. I'll be doing the same once our 5 feet of snow melts. Its a good thing winter is winding down because my firewood pile is looking pathetic right now.
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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by Reel Geezer »

I hit a bit of luck this winter, as my wood pile was shrinking. An irrigation canal runs along the south side of my pasture. A crew from the irrigation company spent several days cleaning up the canal and right of way road that runs down our our property. We spent an hour or so during their lunch break talking hunting and fishing. There were a lot of Russian Olive trees along the canal, and I asked about cutting them down. They intended to cut them down so I asked if they would save the larger trees so I could cut them up for firewood. A few days later I discovered piles of rounds all along the canal. They had cut them for me and said to just haul them away. I did so, and spent a week splitting my way through the rounds. My wood shed is now empty awaiting all that wood that is drying in our 60-70 degree spring weather. I sure could have used Mike's log splitter.
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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by Mike N »

That’s a good story, Phil.I wish I could drive that splitter out West and we could make short work of those Russian Olive rounds. I looked it up and those olive trees burn pretty hot: 23 million BTUs per cord versus 20.4 million BTUs/cord for the black cherry I’m slicing and dicing.

Mike
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