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Author Topic: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood  (Read 6313 times)

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Offline Engineer

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cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« on: November 07, 2009, 10:29:06 pm »
As some of you know, I am the Scoutmaster for the local Boy Scout troop, and one of my Scouts has an idea for an Eagle Scout project involving the donation of cut and split firewood to a local non-profit fund that supplies food and fuel to hard-luck and low-income families. 

He wants to know the typical price range of a full triaxle (no pup) loaded with tree-length hardwood firewood, and the typical cost to the logger (including labor, maintenance and paying the landowner) of that same truckload of firewood.  He'd like to try to convince two or three local logging companies to sell him a couple of truckloads of wood at or close to their cost, so that he has less money to raise and/or more to donate to the fund.  I figured one or two of you guys here might give me an idea of what it takes to fill a log truck.  I imagine it's a full day's work with saw, skidder and log loader, no?  Plus the cost of the trees if you're not taking them from your own land.  He can call some local loggers and find the 'retail' price of a full load dropped in his yard.

Offline woodmills1

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Re: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2009, 11:29:05 pm »
wish you were closer I would bring you some of my 60 dollar specials

I figure I should/need to make 70 an hour on the road with the truck and trailer, but since I only pick up and don't cut sometimes I can unload firewood cheap just to cover costs

so lets say I pick up a load in a town 15 miles away  one or 2 logs and 3 cord of firewood.  I want the logs and the firewood is worth 240 bucks, but I don't want to bring it home and pick it back up, if and when I get a buyer(firewood not a priority for me).  so I call one of my guys who processes firewood who lives on my path home, and offer him the 3 cord for $140, the cost of my 2 hours out.  I get the 2 logs for free, get paid my 70 per hr and am done with that job.  also my firewood guy is happy and more likely to continue to call me for the regular 80 per cord, which I have about 40 cord on backlog.............hmmm is it time to get a processor myself


anyway wish I was closer
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Online Ianab

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Re: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2009, 01:57:18 am »
I would suggest you approach the loggers and see if one is willing to help out with a good deal. Use the 'good deed' + charity + CASH as bargining points.

Any logging job is going to have reject logs, tops, bananas, rotten inside etc. They are often left at the landing unless the logger has a firewood dealer already. If they have a nearby market for that 'rubbish' then they can deliver a load for a good rate. Often the cost of trucking it is the major cost.

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Offline mike_van

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Re: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« Reply #3 on: November 08, 2009, 06:21:38 am »
A lot of town highway departments have their own log or woodpile from work they do. Many of these get burned or they have to hire a grinder to come in.  I'd start looking there, as it should be free. Especially to a good cause like that.
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Offline Frickman

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Re: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« Reply #4 on: November 08, 2009, 03:40:36 pm »
Locally we get around $600 / load delivered. That's for a full triaxle load, the price will vary some depending on mileage, species, and how good of friends you are with the logger. I don't own a triaxle, but I sell wood to those who do for $400 / load, picked up on the landing. A good friend has a tandem truck and those loads are $300 / load. I have a single axle, sixteen foot flatbed truck and I charge $100, plus trucking. It takes 3 1/2 to 4 loads on my truck to make a triaxle load. A friend down the road gave up the sawmill business and installed a firewood processor and he pays $400 / triaxle load picked up on the landing, so that $400 price is pretty much the going rate around these parts.

I don't figure in any price for stumpage on firewood because I don't pay anything for it. Firewood comes from topwood and cull logs and I don't pay for those, only for good logs. On occasion, and a rare occasion at that, I will pay $5 / cord for firewood stumpage. So in other words, the cost of producing firewood is mostly labor and equipment, not in the wood itself.

Firewood comes out with the rest of the tree so I don't figure alot of logging cost in it. Labor and equipment for logging from stump to landing average $175 / triaxle load. Throw in some extra for profit for the business and I like to make $250 or so / triaxle load for logging.  If I'm way back in the woods and need a skidder and forwarder figure in a little more money.

If a logger could get a tax deduction for a charitable contribution you might get ahold of some wood easier than buying it outright. Most of us are so backed up with firewood orders right now that we might not get caught up until spring. If it is going to a good cause and we get a deduction out of it we might be more inclined to move you ahead to the front of the line.

Our local Sunday paper classified section has about a dozen or so ads for firewood. One is for USDA approved firewood, whatever that means, 16" x 2' x 4' for $99 delivered. That's 1/12 cord for a hundred bucks, or $1200 / cord. If they're selling any it must be because of the marketing.
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Offline Clark

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Re: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« Reply #5 on: November 08, 2009, 04:10:04 pm »
You might want to check out any local pulp or saw mills.  They usually have a pile of reject wood that is acceptable to burn.  The only problem with this reject wood is that some of it is rejected due to it having metal in it.  A decent metal detector could probably locate the foreign object close enough to avoid it for firewood but would add a level of complexity to the project.

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Offline rockman

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Re: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« Reply #6 on: November 08, 2009, 08:43:50 pm »
The local boy scout troop here does that very thing, they cut and split firewood and donate it to low income families. All the wood(trees/logs) are donated to the troop and they seem to have more than they need every year. I tried to donate some to them 2 years ago but they had all they could handle.Good luck with your project.
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Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« Reply #7 on: November 09, 2009, 04:31:11 am »
We always bought it for pulp price as that is what most of it is anyway from most harvests. Very small volumes of logs and veneer on most woodlots up this way. The loggers are cutting for pulp, so don't expect much more than that accept if they have to bring along a loader truck.

Pre-commercial thinning pays off. :)

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Offline john plowden

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Re: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« Reply #8 on: November 09, 2009, 06:53:16 pm »
What is USDA approved fire wood?
John

Offline stonebroke

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Re: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« Reply #9 on: November 09, 2009, 06:56:56 pm »
I think it is the same as free range firewood.

Stonebroke

Offline Frickman

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Re: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« Reply #10 on: November 09, 2009, 07:01:37 pm »
Maybe organic firewood.
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Offline chevytaHOE5674

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Re: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« Reply #11 on: November 09, 2009, 07:13:48 pm »
Try to play the charity card. I know of a local logger or two here that will donate a few loads here and there, as I'm sure they take a charitable tax write off for the loads.

Offline stonebroke

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Re: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« Reply #12 on: November 09, 2009, 07:15:34 pm »
Maybe organic free range all natural wood

Stonebroke

Offline Tom

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Re: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« Reply #13 on: November 09, 2009, 07:44:10 pm »
With the influx of pests, like the Emerald Ash Borer, USDA approved probably refers to "heat treat wood" or wood that the bureacracy approves for shipment.
I say it tongue in cheek, but, since the USDA, led by Secretary Vilsack, is so deliberately following the Al Gore theory of Global warming and pushing Carbon Sequestration, perhaps USDA approved means that it is firewood that you are not allowed to cut down.  :-\

Personally, I think it is Bunk! ;D
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Offline gemniii

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Re: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« Reply #14 on: November 13, 2009, 07:03:13 pm »
<snip>USDA approved means that it is firewood that you are not allowed to cut down. 
No, you've got it all wrong, you can cut it down, you just can't burn it :)

Offline mrnero

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Re: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« Reply #15 on: November 13, 2009, 07:50:48 pm »
What is USDA approved fire wood?
John
USDA approved firewood means just what it says. It approved by US Dept of Agri div of Animal Plant Health Inspection Service aka ( USDA/APHIS). The firewood has either been kiln dried or fumigated via treatment for bug and insect infestation. Once this treatment has been performed, you then tag the firewood with a usda/aphis certified sticker. You then can ship/transported firewood legally from one area to another (e.g. quarantine area to an un-quarantine area / vise versa ).

Offline rocksnstumps

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Re: cost vs. price of tree-length firewood
« Reply #16 on: November 18, 2009, 10:39:00 pm »
Mrnero has pretty much explained why the USDA marketing ploy. In Wisconsin, there's concerns about EAB, oak wilt, and gypsy moths and the state has enacted rules for state parks and for camping on other state lands. Here's a sample but since it's from a few years ago the list of counties being quarantined has doubled
What is Acceptable Firewood?
Firewood purchased within 50 miles of a state forest, park, or other state-managed property.
AND harvested in Wisconsin.
AND NOT purchased, harvested or stored in, or transported through a quarantined county of Wisconsin. These include: Ozaukee, Washington, Fond du Lac, and Sheboygan Counties.
Firewood from a vendor that is certified by the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection. Find a certified vendor [exit DNR].
Dimensional and untreated lumber scraps, such as 2-by-4s and 2-by-6s