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PhineasC

New England Firewood and Wood-Burning Thread

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22 hours ago, PowderBeard said:

Any truth to newer stoves and ones with cats needing wood that is really like <15%. I've seen a lot of discussion on FWH and Hearth forums that the old <20% rule goes out the window with newer stoves. Not so much getting going but when throttling down and secondary burn time I notice a huge difference in secondary burn for wood that is 13-15% vs 18-20% MC.

I haven't read anything to that effect with the new regulations, I've owned two cat stoves, anything 20 and below is fine, driest I ever got my  wood was 16% before I burned it. Even though I bought my current stove 5 years ago it passes the new regs.

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I have a big black birch that was cut down last winter that I need to split.  Having another black birch, an oak and a maple cut down next week.  Can I split the newer ones now or do I have to wait for them to dry?

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2 hours ago, Hitman said:

I have a big black birch that was cut down last winter that I need to split.  Having another black birch, an oak and a maple cut down next week.  Can I split the newer ones now or do I have to wait for them to dry?

Much easier to split when green.  If I cut logs to stove length, I generally stack them to prevent the ends from drying.  Full water content maxes the sideways hydraulic pressure.  Of course, if you have a mechanical splitter that's no longer an issue.  However, black birch bark is waterproof, just like white/yellow, so it will dry very slowly if not split, and in the warm season will be quick to decay.  You've probably seen the bright fungi that colonize the sap coming from the stump of a spring/summer-cut birch.

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9 hours ago, Hitman said:

I have a big black birch that was cut down last winter that I need to split.  Having another black birch, an oak and a maple cut down next week.  Can I split the newer ones now or do I have to wait for them to dry?

Cut and split now, get the drying process going as soon as possible. Black birch is great firewood, high BTU's and clean.

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7 hours ago, tamarack said:

Much easier to split when green.  If I cut logs to stove length, I generally stack them to prevent the ends from drying.  Full water content maxes the sideways hydraulic pressure.  Of course, if you have a mechanical splitter that's no longer an issue.  However, black birch bark is waterproof, just like white/yellow, so it will dry very slowly if not split, and in the warm season will be quick to decay.  You've probably seen the bright fungi that colonize the sap coming from the stump of a spring/summer-cut birch.

Thanks.  The stump was gushing sap late spring.

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10 hours ago, DavisStraight said:

Cut and split now, get the drying process going as soon as possible. Black birch is great firewood, high BTU's and clean.

Black Birch is great but heavier than a mofo when green. I usually don't bother but I have plenty of Oak.

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1 hour ago, DavisStraight said:

I prefer black birch over oak, BTU's are similar but it dries quicker and less mess.

In my experience, cut/split red oak dries fairly quickly even though it's got loads of water when green, faster than white/yellow birch - we're north of the range of black birch.  White oak, without the open pores of red, would be another story.

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8 hours ago, tamarack said:

In my experience, cut/split red oak dries fairly quickly even though it's got loads of water when green, faster than white/yellow birch - we're north of the range of black birch.  White oak, without the open pores of red, would be another story.

You have oak way up there?

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10 hours ago, Whineminster said:

You have oak way up there?

Not a lot, though part of the reason is preferential harvesting of the more valuable species (otherwise known as high-grading.)  Farthest north I've seen natural-origin oak (always northern red at the edge of oak's range) is on the south rim of Charette Hill in Fort Kent, a droughty site and oak is more drought tolerant than most trees in N. Maine.  I've heard there's some in the York River valley on Gaspe, and I saw a cookie from an oak that had been planted in Madawaska - 19" diameter in 42 years - fast growth for any tree.

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2 hours ago, PhineasC said:

I haven't found any oak on my property yet, although I haven't done any kind of exhaustive search. Perhaps down at the lowest part of my property there may be some. I noticed it gets a bit swampier there and black birch starts mixing in.

I'd look for oaks in the drier, sunnier areas and not necessarily down in the lowest parts, especially if it happens to be wet there. I'd be surprised if you had black birch that far north and at that elevation too. More than likely you have yellow birch and not black. Yellow birch has a shiny, silvery bark that easily peels off like paper revealing a yellowish hue underneath. Black birch bark is darker and becomes plated with age. It doesn't peel off. 

Edit: It could be black cherry as it is often confused with black birch. Black cherry is more cold tolerant and extends further north. The bark plates on black cherry are considerably smaller than those on black birch.

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1 hour ago, wxmanmitch said:

I'd look for oaks in the drier, sunnier areas and not necessarily down in the lowest parts, especially if it happens to be wet there. I'd be surprised if you had black birch that far north and at that elevation too. More than likely you have yellow birch and not black. Yellow birch has a shiny, silvery bark that easily peels off like paper revealing a yellowish hue underneath. Black birch bark is darker and becomes plated with age. It doesn't peel off. 

Edit: It could be black cherry as it is often confused with black birch. Black cherry is more cold tolerant and extends further north. The bark plates on black cherry are considerably smaller than those on black birch.

Hmm, it could be black cherry. I will have to look more closely. It’s dead so no leaves to check. My cursory inspection said black birch. Will cut it down and burn it regardless. Haha

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18 hours ago, PhineasC said:

Hmm, it could be black cherry. I will have to look more closely. It’s dead so no leaves to check. My cursory inspection said black birch. Will cut it down and burn it regardless. Haha

One cut into that tree and you will know, as cherry heartwood is far more deeply colored than any of the birches.  In the north country I've most often found oaks on S/SW slopes, often where hardwood stands are grading into mixedwood.  In addition to the Fort Kent stand, we've also found oak at Seboomook, NW of Moosehead, Scopan, just west of PQI, and Public Lands' Eagle Lake tract 15 miles south of For Kent.  Also found a single black cherry at Seboomook, farthest north I've seen that species.

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1 hour ago, tamarack said:

One cut into that tree and you will know, as cherry heartwood is far more deeply colored than any of the birches.  

The heartwood color of black birch is more of a vibrant red as well, correct?

I do know that even dead birch will have a sweet wintergreen/mint smell to it when cut/split. That is the biggest give away imo.

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On 9/22/2020 at 6:59 AM, amarshall said:

Can someone educate me on the insert.  I have a regular fireplace I use a lot. 

The hearth room forum is the place to learn about inserts. I installed one myself in an old heatilator Fireplace and it was best thing I could of done to heat my modest sized home. If the power goes out you lose the fan which puts out 75 -85% of the heat so you just hook up the generator as backup. Average install i'm guessing 5-7000.00 . I did mine myself for 3600.00 . All depends on what you want to spend on insert. Best money I spent with the past 8 winters we have had. 

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On 9/22/2020 at 1:43 PM, BrianW said:

Best stuff I ever burned was honey locust. Absolutely incredible heat and the coals lasted for hours. 

Not sure I have that on my property but best BTU wood I've found to burn is the Shagbark Hickory around me. 

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5 minutes ago, Bobby Orr said:

The hearth room forum is the place to learn about inserts. I installed one myself in an old heatilator Fireplace and it was best thing I could of done to heat my modest sized home. If the power goes out you lose the fan which puts out 75 -85% of the heat so you just hook up the generator as backup. Average install i'm guessing 5-7000.00 . I did mine myself for 3600.00 . All depends on what you want to spend on insert. Best money I spent with the past 8 winters we have had. 

I can't tell you how happy I am that I installed an insert.......I burn my broken hockey sticks.

See the source image

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19 minutes ago, Great Snow 1717 said:

I can't tell you how happy I am that I installed an insert.......I burn my broken hockey sticks.

See the source image

Alan Eagleson ? If so he was convicted of several things.

 

 

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3 minutes ago, scoob40 said:

Alan Eagleson ? If so he was convicted of several things.

 

 

Correct. He eventually pled guilty. Russ Conway the fantastic hockey writer  for the then Lawrence Eagle Tribune wrote a series of investigative articles on Eagleson's actions. Conway was a fountain of stories on the Big Bad Bruins. One of the best was about players using the runway at Lawrence Airport to drag race. 

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If I remember correctly, #4 would have been a Bruin for life and owned a % of the Bruins if Alan Eagleson had ever made Orr aware of the Bruin's offer. I think he looted the players retirement program too. A bad guy.

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1 hour ago, Great Snow 1717 said:

I can't tell you how happy I am that I installed an insert.......I burn my broken hockey sticks.

See the source image

That shirt is epic. Save the sticks burn trees. 

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9 minutes ago, Angus said:

If I remember correctly, #4 would have been a Bruin for life and owned a % of the Bruins if Alan Eagleson had ever made Orr aware of the Bruin's offer. I think he looted the players retirement program too. A bad guy.

I do not recall if the contract included a percentage of the Bruins. Even if that was included it would have been a very small percentage. The issue was Orr trusted Eagleson. At the time Eagleson was the most powerful man in hockey. 

Orr is the best hockey player that I have ever seen. No one before or since has ever been able to control a game like he could. And those Big Bad Bruins teams were the most entertaining of all the Boston sports teams. Those teams led to New England becoming a hockey hotbed that continues to this day. 

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no, but started playing in 78 so that's all we knew was Orr and the Bruins. They used to come to our banquets and talk to us. It was they way the game should be played. Everytime you hit the ice you were transformed into a bruin in your mind. Greatest game on earth. 

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1 hour ago, Great Snow 1717 said:

I burn my broken hockey sticks.

 

I imagine if I burned all the Bauer Vapors I have broke we would have heat for a while but it would smell awful.  The legendary Sherwood with "banana curve" sticks deserve better, I  mounted shot glasses on one.

 

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I would need to go find the autobiography Orr wrote a few years back but I recall it was 5%. I started playing youth hockey '71-72 and it is hard for people nowadays to understand how hugely popular the Bruins were during the 70's and really into the early to mid-80's (when the Bird led Celtics became the toast of the town). They owned the city in the '70's. During the other 3 seasons when there wasn't pond ice, we played street hockey. To your point, Orr had the ability to completely dominate a game. What strikes me about him too is he was thick, body-wise like a modern hockey player. If you go back and watch 60's and 70's professional games in any sport those athletes don't look like what's out on the field or ice today. Orr is different.

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5 hours ago, PowderBeard said:

The heartwood color of black birch is more of a vibrant red as well, correct?

I do know that even dead birch will have a sweet wintergreen/mint smell to it when cut/split. That is the biggest give away imo.

Yes, but (from memory, have not seen a black birch log in about 50 years) not as dark as cherry, and the white-to-red contrast is sharper in cherry, the outer layer of white thinner.  Until cherry has been long dead, the wood retains its "bitter almond" aroma. 

For me, Orr and Gretzky share the top spot for controlling a game, though they did it in much different ways and Gretzky's control was much sneakier.  He was a great skater but IMO his puck-handling and awareness is what puts him at the top. He'd sit in his "office" behind the net then feed a teammate for a point blank shot.  Orr was a great puck-handler but IMO it's his skating is what put him at the top.  That combo meant that Orr could play keep-away longer than could anyone else, as best exemplified by his killing nearly all of a major (called on Phil Esposito) while down 2-1 to the Rangers in P-3 of game 6 in a playoff game (won 3-2 by the Bruins to clinch.  If they lost, G-7 would've been at MSG.) 
YMMV

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