Results 1 to 20 of 51

Thread: Cheaper Wood?

Hybrid View

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Strafford, NH, USA
    Posts
    377

    Default Cheaper Wood?

    Michael Palmer has made comments about the low price he pays per board foot for hive box lumber in his area. I am not that far from him (relatively) in SE New Hampshire but canít seem to find comparable prices to what he has mentioned in dimensioned lumber (have checked as far as southern Maine). I am able to find similar prices in rough cut green wood from local mills so I wonder if that is what anyone is using. With that being asked, follow up questions are:

    Do you use rough cut green wood?
    How do you treat the green wood before building boxes with it?
    Do you air dry it for XX time first?
    If not, is there any issue with shrinkage as the wood dries (Ie. Boxes getting to tight for frames, etc)?
    Do you then use a thickness planer to finish the stock to depth?
    Have you tried hemlock (lots of old barns are made from it around here)?

    Any tips on cheaper wood are appreciated!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Alachua County, FL, USA
    Posts
    6,997

    Default Re: Cheaper Wood?

    I use rough or planed, whatever I can get cheapest after adding my cost to plane.
    I would not use green wood as it is harder on the tools and continues to change and not always at a predictable rate.
    If I had green lumber I would dry it for several months before making any cut.
    Pine and cypress are most prevalent around here.
    americasbeekeeper.com
    beekeeper@americasbeekeeper.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    6,337

    Default Re: Cheaper Wood?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fishman43 View Post
    How do you treat the green wood before building boxes with it?
    Do you air dry it for XX time first?
    Courtesy of Vermont Dept of Forests, here is info on air drying of green lumber:
    http://www.vtfpr.org/pdf/drylumber.pdf

    If you use green lumber for hives (not kiln dried or not air dried), you will almost certainly have problems with those hive bodies as the wood reaches equilibrium.
    Graham
    --- Practical reality trumps philosophy!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    West Bath, Maine, United States
    Posts
    1,142

    Default Re: Cheaper Wood?

    I pick up rough cut from a local mill. Usually local mills do not cut green wood, they cut wet wood. The logs have been cut for a while and stacked whole until needed. The bees get left overs from other work unless I get going on making boxes. If the mill is not cutting slab firewood or chipping there is some slab wood cut with wane and that is thrown into the slab pile. Plenty for hives if you are there at the right time.

    Kiln dry in the rain is going to swell, wet is going to shrink in the sun. My eyes and hands are a bigger problem than my wood.

    Green wood shrinks more than wet. The cells have lost some internal water and most of the water is between cells when wet and not green. I rough plane to 7/8 and air dry for a while. If I needed a box and all I had was green I would cut it a little over and not worry about it after a few screws. Wood shrinks more in width than length, even in a deep with wet you will lose maybe an 8th, green maybe more but I have not needed to try green.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Strafford, NH, USA
    Posts
    377

    Default Re: Cheaper Wood?

    I tried asking for the slab scrap piles as well and most of the yard staff has dibs on it for their wood furnaces. I found a local guy that has a large wood mizer type mill so his wood may still be green not just wet.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    5,466

    Default Re: Cheaper Wood?

    I use shorts and industrial grade. Shorts are 2-4' lengths, with some flaw, cut off the end of a long board so the remaining board is higher grade. Most mills that plane and kiln dry will have something like this. Or...industrial grade...good enough for bee hives.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    West Bath, Maine, United States
    Posts
    1,142

    Default Re: Cheaper Wood?

    Hemlock;
    Works great if it stays wet or it stays dry. It can rot quickly if it gets wet and then drys repeatedly. That is what I find, have never read anybody say the same though. Painted box should be fine but I have not used, pine is easier to get and work. Dry hemlock it is a little hard to work as it splits unless you blunt the nail or drill. If I am going to build with hemlock I like it wet or green not dry. Nail it wet it will not split. Nail it dry it will.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Chesterfield, NH
    Posts
    503

    Default Re: Cheaper Wood?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Palmer View Post
    I use shorts and industrial grade. Shorts are 2-4' lengths, with some flaw, cut off the end of a long board so the remaining board is higher grade. Most mills that plane and kiln dry will have something like this. Or...industrial grade...good enough for bee hives.
    I can find Shorts about 2Mi from me 6'X 3/4" X 4,6,8,10,12 in. wide about $0.60 board ft #2 pine all plane and kiln dry


    BEE HAPPY Jim 134
    Franklin County Beekeepers Association MA.
    http://www.franklinmabeekeepers.org/

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads