Ice storm tree down

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Mike N
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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It was 72 degrees today along the WV/PA state line, which is incredible for March 1. I brought a wagon full of seasoned cherry up to the house to replenish my stockpile. Forecast is lows below freezing all next week.

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Re: Ice storm tree down

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So I happend to plan a trip to LA this week and it is 52 degrees. The 70's and 80's degrees in the mid-country including Kentucky is odd. It appears to be a La Nina pattern. It will be interesting to see what happens in later 2023 when the shi\ft to El Nino occurs. From what I can gather, we will shift to hot and dry in many parts of the country.

Let's see how fishing is affected. Someone should write an article on El Nino fishing.
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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kyreels wrote: Thu Mar 02, 2023 3:12 am Let's see how fishing is affected. Someone should write an article on El Nino fishing.
Funny you should mention that. I think I could almost write that one. Or at least offer some observations there that might prove predictive.
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Mike N
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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My buddy brought his Bobcat skid steer over late afternoon and we removed a 75’ cherry tree on the hillside above the cabin before it could fall. He used a Stihl 500i chain saw. It’s a beast. The ropes, pulleys and skid steer brought them down the hillside.

Wild black cherry trees produce beautiful lumber and firewood but have very sketchy root balls. The smaller cherry next to it fell in the ice storm last year and barely missed the cabin. He moved the the two 12-15’ section to the lower gravel lot and we rounded it at 16” to be split into firewood. Yes, both would have been great saw logs, but I don’t have a sawmill and hauling them to one did not make business sense.







Last edited by Mike N on Thu Mar 02, 2023 10:55 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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Those are some nice logs. No one buying timber?
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Mike N
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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Paul Roberts wrote: Thu Mar 02, 2023 10:14 pm Those are some nice logs. No one buying timber?
The cost of getting it to the sawmill and then paying income tax on it just doesn’t make 2 logs cost feasible to saw.
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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While we had the skid steer there to pull it out of the water, we took out the large willow tree that over the years had bent over and made one end of the pond largely unfishable. Note the rope tied to the tree being cut and the skid steer. Willow is dense but contains so much water, I will have to wait to July to see if it’s worth cutting it into firewood.






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Re: Ice storm tree down

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I had time to split 3 of the 25 rounds from the cherry tree this evening. I got about 40 pieces of firewood from each round, splitting them fairly small. It should take about 6 rounds to fill each face cord rack (1/3 of a cord of wood.) So what we cut should yield about 1-1/2 cords of firewood, not counting the limbs still to be harvested.

I hope Matt and Brian can install smell-a-vision on Reel Talk so I can share the aroma of this fresh split cherry.





I could not lift the rounds up on the horizontal splitting deck by myself, so I adjusted the splitter from horizontal to vertical and just rolled them under the wedge.

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Re: Ice storm tree down

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Smells nice and nice to split. Looks like you could make 2x4s with such a straight trunk. That’s a good workout too. Ive been clearing a trail along the shore of our “lake”: limbing and felling to open up the trail and views. Then a whole lot of burning. Been busy enough this winter that I’m not needing Tylenol after each session. 💪
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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Re: Ice storm tree down

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Amazing, how do you find the time?
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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One of these days in the foreseeable future, if the climate savers have their way, y'all will be banned from burning that stuff. :roll:
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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Stef Duma wrote: Sun Mar 12, 2023 2:19 pm Amazing, how do you find the time?
Stef:

It's Sunday evening here and I'm at my office working, but I did get in about 3 hours of firewood therapy this afternoon.

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Re: Ice storm tree down

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Therapy it is. Firewood -woods work in general- is my “going to the gym” time. And resurrecting old reels is my meditation. I get a bit of “shopping” in too, foraging mushrooms in the woods (we have so many here). When I shop at a supermarket I tend to come home worn out. When I shop in the woods I come home invigorated.
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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21 rounds of the original 25 now split.


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Re: Ice storm tree down

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Kudos to you, Mike! That's a lot of darn work even though you do have a splitter. :cool
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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All 25 rounds split up to about 4/3 of a cord stacked, or about 1000 sticks. A cord of quality hardwood firewood delivered and stacked in our area costs about $400-500. The staging area is now empty. You can see that I use some old 1”x 6” fence rails to give me a level deck for the round I’m splitting to sit on.

On the very last split I noticed a seal was leaking some hydraulic fluid on the vertical splitter, so I’ll fix that to hopefully avoid swinging a maul. There is about another cord of large branch wood from the same cherry tree still up on the hillside I hope to round up this weekend with the chainsaw (in between watching the NCAA D1 wrestling tournament).



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Re: Ice storm tree down

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Re: Ice storm tree down

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As firewood dries, it shrinks. I’ve seen more than one stack fall over, so I braced these two face cords together and extended the base on both sides.



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Re: Ice storm tree down

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Next up was to get what’s left from the big cherry, including a maple it knocked down, on the steep hillside above the cabin. I’ve tried several ways to measure 16” cuts, but I’ve fallen back to a 64” stick marked with yellow tape at 16” intervals. I then mark the log with sidewalk chalk. It’s very quick and accurate. [And yes, those are steel toed boots and chain saw chaps.]




Next up are the cherry tree branches, which are like small trees themselves.
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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I’ve tried several ways to measure 16” cuts, but I’ve fallen back to a 64” stick marked with yellow tape at 16” intervals.
Clench your fist and measure from your knuckles to your elbow and it should be pretty close to 16". Measure across your hand with a clenched fist and it's pretty close to 4", unless one has a really big, or small, hand.
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Re: Ice storm tree down

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Well, Tom, I was rounding up the cherry tree limbs this evening and realized on one last cut that I’d left my marking stick about 30’ up the hillside. So, I used your elbow to fist measure technique and marked it with chalk and cut. It turned out to be a perfect 16”, so thanks for the tip.

Lifting a few of the 200 lbs rounds up on the rack after bringing them 100’ down the hillside was a test for my Medicare-eligible back. No good explanation why I put the lighter maple rounds on the bottom. Duh.

The Stihl MS 291 (55cc) with the “Light D4” chainsaw bar, ripped through the cherry like butter. I highly recommend that saw. You can see the log hand grapple on the top of the stack. I wouldn’t work without one. I call unsplit stacks of rounds like that my Christmas Club savings account.



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Re: Ice storm tree down

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Ordered a couple more grapples off Amazon for about $25 each. Once you use one to pick up a round you just bucked, you’ll realize how much easier it makes the firewood process.

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Re: Ice storm tree down

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So in these two racks are the rounds I’ve bucked up so far from the remaining cherry limbs and the knocked down maples— I’m guessing they will split to about 450 sticks, or just under a cord. The grapples were a lifesaver. There’s about this much left up above the cabin from the same tree, but getting it bucked and carried down the hill will be a challenge due to the topography. I was raised in a big family where you ate what you put on your plate, and I feel compelled not to waste any of this beautiful firewood.

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Re: Ice storm tree down

Post by Paul Roberts »

Mike, my neighbor (with the tractor and splitter) has the 291 saw. It’s cut a lot of wood for him. The 20” bar is handy around these parts. The 500 is indeed a beast. More saw than I want to make use of though. A neighbor sold off a lot of timber this winter and I talked with one of the cutters. They were cutting quite a few 18” to 30+” trees. That’s beast territory.

I like Tom’s fist to elbow rule of… thumb. My wife would like to see our wood looking prettier. I showed her your stacks, and probably shouldn’t have! :)
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