The Forestry Forum
General Forestry => Tree, Plant and Wood I.D. => Topic started by: elitts on January 10, 2017, 09:22:21 am
Ok, I'm new here, having just started succumbing to the woodworking bug. I purchased a pile of assorted snow-covered hardwood (mostly 4/4), from an auction where they were auctioning off a sawmill in Southwest Michigan (Barry County). I'd like to try and identify what I ended up with. Though at about $.15/BF, I won't be unhappy with pretty much anythign At the moment, my purpose for purchasing was some Board and Batten siding, so at a minimum I need to know if it's suitable. Plus, I'd hate to find out down the road that I sided my treehouse/workshop with lumber that would have been worth $4 or $5 a BF.
I know that the sawmill also sold off that day: Cedar, Walnut, White Oak, a little Maple, Butternut and Sassafras.
Let me know if a different view would help.
And Thank-you in advance.
Piece 2(possibly the same as Piece 1?):
Piece 3 (I suspect Cedar):
And then a random board in the lot that made me happy because of nice spalting:
Not an expert by any means but the first one looks like butternut to me. Second one looks kind of like oak. Never dealt with white Oak, only red so am not positive. Oak should have very large open grain compared to anything else. 3rd looks like cedar (do the sniff test, cant miss that smell!) 4th not a clue.
Cedar is the highest recommended species for anything used outdoors where I'm from (Northern WI.) Can't speak to price but can say butternut is rare in my area these days. Cedar is common, oak is usually saved for furniture in my area.
Best of luck!
Well shoot. If you are right, and it's butternut, I don't think I have the heart to use it as siding on a treehouse. I may have to find someone to trade it for something more common.
Yes, the 3rd piece does have the cedar smell. When I cut the piece, it was in my garage and near freezing, so there wasn't much smell. When it warmed up, it was more evident. The reason I wasn't sure is there is some of the wood I KNOW is cedar, but it's a much darker red. I suppose it could have just been from a different tree.
Piece #2 is an oak.
Could be a different species of cedar or cut closer to the heart. I've only worked with northern white cedar in my area so couldn't say for sure. it is a very light red color. more white that red; however the heart can be a deep red similar to western red cedar. I have seen white cedars that are dying or under distress take on a deeper red color.
Thank-you everyone for the help. When I first bought the lot, it was all mixed together and the whole pile just reeked of Cedar, so I had no real idea. Once I spread it out, I was able to identify that there were different species in there. I still can't figure out the logic as to the pile's composition. Unless maybe this was the pile of stuff that didn't fit neatly onto the top of the stickered lumber stacks.
Unrelated to species:
I have no idea how long this stuff sat un-stacked, but it was 3-4 weeks at a minimum. The boards are currently all still fairly straight and true. I've got it stacked and stickered, and I just picked up a moisture meter, so I can check where it's at. But assuming it still has a significant amount of moisture in it, is it too late to seal the ends? Or has whatever checking was going to happen, happened?
Huh. Got the moisture meter today and checked the wood. It all tested at between 13% and 14%. I guess my concern about warping is moot at this point.
I think number one is cherry, number two is an oak for sure...nice score
I knew it was the right price, almost regardless of the wood. I got lucky at the auction because the lot came up before most of the lumber to be offered, and it was covered in snow. The guys that cared what they got didn't want to dig through the snow to check it all out. So I ended up getting about 300 BF of lumber for $45.00.
What really made me sad was my lack of transportation and storage when they got inside the shop and sold about 8000 BF of Kiln dried Butternut, Cherry, Cedar, with a little Walnut, Oak & Maple for an average of $.45/bf.
They were mostly selling in 500-800 BF lots, and there wasn't more than 2-3 people bidding. I had to leave the room because it was depressing me to not buy anything else.
1st one looks like red maple to me, bark doesn't look like cherry to me. 2nd is definitely oak. Last one could be some of the same maple as 1, but spalted. Can't make out #3 at all. It looks too tight for cedar, and since part of it is rotten, might be same as 1 and 4.
After looking again, I would say that #1 and #3 are cherry.
Low, not enough bark on #1 for me to make anything of it.
Over the net... 1&3 look like cherry to me, that's another one with a distinct smell when machined. #2 looks like a red oak
I guess 1 and 3 to be wild cherry and #2 is chestnut oak.
So. Given the fact that all I have are rough sawn boards with the occasional scrap of bark, is there any view I could provide that would allow for confirmation? I could take a larger piece and sand it smooth, or rip it lengthwise.
Very close-up pic of the end grain, preferably sliced clean with a razor knife.
Cherry / Oak (white imho) / Cherry
Yes, it is almost certain that what you have is cherry, oak, and cherry in the pics.