Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Sawmill slab pine trees

When we bought a sawmill a couple years ago, we planned on using it to cut lumber. Kinda obvious, don't ya think?

That's our son Kevin, the first time he used the mill. Timber is in his blood. His Grandpa owned and operated a business that included selling and repairing chainsaws, and he also heated his home most of his life with the firewood he cut each year. Kevin's PapPap had his own sawmill, selling lumber as a side business. Kevin's love of the woods and timber runs deep in his veins.

Anyway, as I was saying, we bought a sawmill to cut lumber. And lumber it does indeed cut. But we're finding some other uses, besides strictly 2x4's, or 1x8's.

If you picture a log, it's round. Those rounded edges have to be cut off to square up the log.

Some of the slabs are just right for cutting pine trees! It's hard to see in the photos, but each tree is somewhat rounded on the front, making each tree very unique.

The 2 trees in the above photo are very thick. So thick we couldn't cut them with our band saw, or even a saber saw. George ended up cutting them with a chain saw!

 We let the slabs dry out for over a year, and the bark dried out and fell off most of them, but we had a few pieces with the bark intact. It may fall off eventually, but that will just reveal the smooth wood underneath.
The scraps were big enough to make some small trees. No two are alike, it just depends on the curve of the wood.

This grouping of trees is in the display window, and shows the size variation. These range from 3 or 4 inches to a couple feet in height.

As they are using the mill, George keeps an eye out for slabs with "tree potential". Surely there will be a few that work in this pile!

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