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Identifying this wood. What kind of wood is this?

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  • Identifying this wood. What kind of wood is this?

    I found some wood for free on craigs and wanted to know if its suitable for my oven. Anybody has a clue?
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  • #2
    Re: Identifying this wood. What kind of wood is this?

    ROTTEN! Very little heat value.

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    • #3
      Re: Identifying this wood. What kind of wood is this?

      It's pretty hard to tell from the photo anything about the wood. Is there any possibility of you going to the place and taking a look at it yourself? I've been given some pine that doesn't look very good and I just use it for my bulk, early heating of the oven. If it's dry and free (of bugs too!), I'd think it would be worth checking into it a little more closely. I do wonder why it's in this garage...could have been some "good" stuff (walnut or apple) that was going to be used by a wood worker in his/her projects.
      Mike Stansbury - The Traveling Loafer
      Roseburg, Oregon ( www.sablesprings.com )

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      • #4
        Re: Identifying this wood. What kind of wood is this?

        Originally posted by Laurentius View Post
        ROTTEN! Very little heat value.
        You're right, it does look either rotten or just really old...

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        • #5
          Re: Identifying this wood. What kind of wood is this?

          Looks like pine. Possibly lodgepole pine.

          If it still has "weight" to it and is not punky, go ahead and use it.

          The best wood for wood ovens is free wood !

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          • #6
            Re: Identifying this wood. What kind of wood is this?

            Originally posted by Neil2 View Post
            The best wood for wood ovens is free wood !
            Agreed!! unless it's punky and full of bugs, why not it's free
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            • #7
              Re: Identifying this wood. What kind of wood is this?

              People.
              Bugs and rotten wood are the least of your problems.
              Please do not burn PINE of any kind either for "bulk" burning or cooking. Pine pitch (even in the driest wood) has turpenes (turpentine) that when burned turn into n-Heptane a very dangerous hydrocarbon (think gasoline). You cannot burn it off. Cooking with it is insane. You will get sick from prolonged exposure. READ: Kidney failure, renal cancer, lung diseases etc.
              Stop. Think about what you are burning.
              Free kidney failure is not a good deal.

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              • #8
                Re: Identifying this wood. What kind of wood is this?

                Originally posted by 1willisrobbins View Post
                People.
                Bugs and rotten wood are the least of your problems.
                Please do not burn PINE of any kind either for "bulk" burning or cooking. Pine pitch (even in the driest wood) has turpenes (turpentine) that when burned turn into n-Heptane a very dangerous hydrocarbon (think gasoline). You cannot burn it off. Cooking with it is insane. You will get sick from prolonged exposure. READ: Kidney failure, renal cancer, lung diseases etc.
                Stop. Think about what you are burning.
                Free kidney failure is not a good deal.
                Sounds like one of them "the sky is falling" myths.
                Havent ppl been burning the stuff for thousands of years and all of a sudden now its a problem.

                The flash point of n-Heptane is -4c so how come you cant burn it?
                The English language was invented by people who couldnt spell.

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                • #9
                  Re: Identifying this wood. What kind of wood is this?

                  Brickie-in-Oz,

                  So perhapse I was simplistic in my explination. Here is a better one:
                  All Pine trees produce oleoresin a.k.a. sap, the sticky stuff that drips from wounded i.e. cut pine trees. Oleoresin itself is a stable compound at normal temperatures. However, when heated i.e. burned, it begins to break into its constituent parts including but not limited to terpenes and in some pine trees like the Jefferys Pine..."[whose] wood is similar to Ponderosa Pine wood, and is used for the same purposes. The exceptional purity of n-heptane distilled from Jeffrey Pine resin led to n-heptane being selected as the zero point on the octane rating scale of petrol."

                  I'm not making this up.

                  Pine trees when burned are technically noxious. The chemical compounds released during burning are not rendered ''safe'' by high temperatures. No more than gasoline fumes are rendered safe to inhale. If pine is used in an oven the net result is a burning of hydrocarbons including n-Heptane among others depending on the pine tree.

                  yes the 'flash' point is low because...

                  "The flash point of a volatile material is the lowest temperature at which it can vaporize to form an ignitable mixture in air. Measuring a flash point requires an ignition source. At the flash point, the vapor may cease to burn when the source of ignition is removed." - yes -4c is low but most things have low 'flash' points when exposed to open flame...like tissue paper.

                  A more applicable temperature is the autoignition point...

                  "The autoignition temperature or kindling point of a substance is the lowest temperature at which it will spontaneously ignite in a normal atmosphere without an external source of ignition, such as a flame or spark. This temperature is required to supply the activation energy needed for combustion. The temperature at which a chemical will ignite decreases as the pressure increases or oxygen concentration increases. It is usually applied to a combustible fuel mixture." +223c for n-Heptane...

                  Either way it doesn't matter to me because n-Heptane "As an organic solvent, its vapor can irritate the skin and eyes, damage the lungs and respiratory system, as well as the central nervous system when inhaled, and cause renal failure when ingested, among other things"...

                  Again I'm not making this up.

                  April 30, 2009 -- Scientists have discovered a new class of chemicals emitted from burning pine trees. From a family of compounds known for their ability to alter human DNA, the findings could change the way we look at the impact of forest fires on public health.-June 1 edition of the journal Environmental Science and Technology

                  No, people have not used pine for cooking for thousands of years. There are thousands of species of wood available for cooking that have been used. There are dozens if not hundreds that are poisonous to humans like trying to cook with a Oleander trees or natural latex producing trees found in the tropics world wide, or even pine trees.

                  Please feel free to burn whatever you want in your oven. I was mearly stating that buring pine, because of its chemical make up, is not the same as your average tree and is potentially dangerous, especially long term exposure.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Identifying this wood. What kind of wood is this?

                    If you are old(than 40) and grew in any southern state in the USA and know anything about outdoor life, pine was you friend. If you needed a fire, the pine limb was abundant. If you need to start a fire, there were nothing better than, fatwood, lighter wood, pine knot, heart pine which is the resin laden heartwood of pine. Pine is and always will be used because of its availability and cost. It is not ideally the best wood to use nor is it the worse.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Identifying this wood. What kind of wood is this?

                      Burning pine does have problems if you stick your head in the sooty smoke at the beginning - that is where you get the cyclics which cause cancer.

                      Now, lets look at fundamental thermodynamics a bit. As temperature increases, the bonds break releasing energy (heat). Most flames are well in excess of 2000F. At the beginning of the fire - you are gasifing more fuel than can be combusted - thus soot (a product of incomplete combustion!) When at full flame, you have full draw of combustion air and fuel being gasified. That is why bellows exist - more air to the fuel means mo' bettah combustion and heat.

                      Solid and liqiud fuels cannot burn - they MUST be gasified prior to combustion. Them Oleoresins do NOT last long when at temperature because they evaporate in the neighborhood of 400F and become fuel. However due to the quantity of carbon to hydrogen bonds in them buggers, they give off a lot of energy (HEAT).

                      The crap that builds up in the chimney is from the start of the fire (heat up) and will burn off if the oven chamber is hot enough. The reason folks need their chimneys cleaned is due to poor firing practices! Allowing the flames up your chimney is a good thing as it is lots o heat which vaporizes the buildup off the walls - provided your chimney is properly sealed at the joints.

                      Moral of the story: Burn clean wood without preservatives and you will be fine. Just remember - pine is low on the BTU scale and is sooty at the start of a fire, but gets better with time. Just use hardwood towards cooking time.

                      CW

                      p.s. Why do I know this stuff? I are a Chemical Engineer which works at a pyrometallurgical facility (Molten Metal, sulfuric acid, really big equipment - what more does a kid want in life?) I have played at Oil Refineries, power plants and other industries as well and love getting paid to make chemicals work for me.
                      Jen-Aire 5 burner propane grill/Char Broil Smoker

                      Follow my build Chris' WFO

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                      • #12
                        Re: Identifying this wood. What kind of wood is this?

                        I agree with Brickie..... it's the flash point we are concerned with not the auto-ignition temp. when burning in the oven, there is open flames and n-heptane ignites ate -4c when exposed to a flame or ignition source. If I have my oven fully loaded at 500c and a roaring fire...there are no n-heptane molecules hanging around. Perhaps, i wouldn't throw a new piece of pine onto the fire at the same time as cooking a pizza because of the addition of smoke to the oven. But still, can't imagine there being any n-heptane molecules being available under those conditions.
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                        • #13
                          Re: Identifying this wood. What kind of wood is this?

                          Unfortunately - there will be a FEW - Thermodynamics does not allow for zero. However it will be so few it would be probably non-detectible if less than a 2 hour test of the flue were to occur (based off experience.) As my son would say in his pubescent deep voice "Don' worry 'bout it!"
                          Jen-Aire 5 burner propane grill/Char Broil Smoker

                          Follow my build Chris' WFO

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