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Thread: Dropping a white pine - Sap concern / timing?

  1. #1

    Dropping a white pine - Sap concern / timing?

    Hi all,

    We have a monstrous white pine - 2.5-3' diameter and ~100' tall (guesstimate) that we will unfortunately be dropping as part of a house build in Michigan.

    If we want to mill, kiln dry, and utilize the wood is there an optimal time to do it? Someone said that we should drop it in January as this time of year it will be filled with sap.

    Is that old logger folk lore or is there truth to it?

    We would have it milled and kiln dried.

    Do people ever use white pine for shiplap?

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    cleveland,tn.
    Posts
    283
    dropping live trees is better in winter as the sap falls and there then is less to dry, just cut when log is not frozen solid. I would think early Jan would be your best time are you a upper?

  3. #3
    Thanks - the house will be built in the UP.

    Do people ever use white pine for shiplap?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    cleveland,tn.
    Posts
    283
    I do not know if historically it was used for shiplap but depending on what is being used for finish or treating the wood surfaces I do not see why you should not use it. I have a different white pine in TN. I assume but I think it is nice looking.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    350
    It's not white pine, but I dropped this 24" loblolly last Saturday and the sap was running like someone turned on a faucet
    IMG_20181022_194902_693.jpg

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    cleveland,tn.
    Posts
    283
    yeah I think loblolly is more of a yellow pine when the pine beetles ran thru here I had 22 acres of loblolly replanted where there was a mostly mixed species pine and mixed hardwood forest cause it is a good pulp wood or a lumber wood tree with good growth.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    SE Michigan
    Posts
    1,690
    John, agree with the advice above. I know how you feel. We had a white pine of that size we had to remove because it was beginning to lean towards the neighbors cabin (Michigan, Houghton Lake area). Heck, some winters, branches would break off and they were the size of small trees. Loved that pine and hated to see it go, but just couldn’t take the risk it would fall on its own. The arborist waited until winter to take it down.
    Last edited by Phil Mueller; 10-28-2018 at 8:41 AM.

  8. #8
    Thanks everyone

  9. #9
    One additional reason that in the north we prefer to cut white pine in the winter. You are less likely to get blue stain when the weather stays cold.
    Dave Anderson
    Chester Toolworks LLC
    Chester, NH

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Anderson NH View Post
    One additional reason that in the north we prefer to cut white pine in the winter. You are less likely to get blue stain when the weather stays cold.

    Follow up question: if I drop this thing today (we have a foot of snow already and I will remain until May) and seal the end is it ok to leave it until spring to mill and kiln dry?

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by John Sayen View Post
    Follow up question: if I drop this thing today (we have a foot of snow already and I will remain until May) and seal the end is it ok to leave it until spring to mill and kiln dry?
    Hi John I have done this many times with no issues when the snow was too deep to haul the logs out of the woods. Don't leave it too long in the spring and you'll make out just fine. Get the end sealer on within hours of falling it. Also, make as many decisions as you can about how to buck it up before It's partly buried in snow!

    Good luck and stay safe,

    B

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by brent stanley View Post
    Hi John I have done this many times with no issues when the snow was too deep to haul the logs out of the woods. Don't leave it too long in the spring and you'll make out just fine. Get the end sealer on within hours of falling it. Also, make as many decisions as you can about how to buck it up before It's partly buried in snow!

    Good luck and stay safe,

    B
    Thank you. Do you think itís important to buck it now vs in the spring?

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by John Sayen View Post
    Thank you. Do you think it’s important to buck it now vs in the spring?
    Probably won't make much difference. If you can, fall it across some scrap logs/poles such that when it settles as the snow melts It's off the ground. Makes bucking easier (keeps the chain out of the dirt!) and you can look 360degrees around the bole for defects etc.

    Take pics for us!

    B

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    cleveland,tn.
    Posts
    283
    getting them off the ground is a good thing to do keeps the mud from getting embedded into the bark so your blades will run longer as long as they are not dragged in fresh mud before sawing. and I would buck now cause I see no good reason to wait till later.

  15. #15
    I make slab tables and benches. I like my logs to lay for a time. Even a year or two is no problem for me.

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