Today is the day you will learn what to look for when harvesting lumber to make log .
In this video you will learn what to look for when selecting your raw logs to make log furniture.
Identifying Good Timber
Let’s face it, one of the most crucial steps of building log furniture is locating and using the right materials.
Aside from the fact that cutting live trees is not a good forestry practice, freshly cut live trees do not make for good furniture. If not cured properly, green or wet logs tend to warp dramatically in the drying process. Freshly cut green logs should not be used for making furniture.
Always check the following when selecting logs to make log furniture.
Good, properly dried lumber, should be light weight relative to it’s size. You can compare a wet log and a dry log to feel the difference. You will see for yourself it is quite obvious when a tree is cut green.
Dryness can be checked several ways, but all will reveal whether the log is adequate for log furniture. First, scrape the log to check for flaking of the bark. A dry log’s bark will scrape off in small flakes.
Use the blunt edge of metal tool, like a painter’s tool or back of a knife to check moisture content of the log. Do not use the sharp edge as it will dig into, and potentially damage the wood. You will find, when scraping a log that was cut green or still green, the edge of the tool will easily dig into the wood.
Another indicator that timber was not dead standing and cut green are the characteristics of the limbs. The manner in which the limbs have been knocked off the log is important. Look for limbs that are broken off cleanly. When a tree dies in nature the limbs are knocked off naturally. These branches tend to break off closer to the trunk. In contrast, a tree that was cut green has limbs that tend to protrude further out from the tree trunk.
Rotting and Moisture Damage
Good material coming from a tree that has died while standing is uniformly dry because it has dried
while vertical. The moisture in dead standing lumber has left the tree from the top to bottom.
Even though a tree may have died naturally in the forest, it doesn’t mean it is always good for log furniture building.
Fallen trees often lay on the forest floor absorbing moisture on one side. These logs may be fully dry on one side while rotting on the other side.
Rot is easy to identify. Rotten wood will be soft and spongy to the touch or will actually chunk off when scraped or gouged.
Storing Lumber for Log Furniture
Always stack your material vertically. This not only makes the wood more accessible, it allows for rain, snow, and condensation moisture to be exposed to the sun and not seep into the wood.
In review, make sure to check that the log feels lightweight, flaking dry bark when scraped, not too tapered, and doesn’t have limbs that protrude far out from the trunk. Remember, never store your wood horizontal on racks as moisture damage will occur.
Watch this video now to see how easy it is to make your own log furniture.
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