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Old 03-19-2011, 08:53 PM
heliman's Avatar
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Location: Perth, Australia
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Default Great Find - Whitegum - Free

I noticed that the council has been active pruning a massive Whitegum tree around the corner - outside someones house. In preparation for removal they had cut all the pieces into 1 meter lengths.

Too good an opportunity to miss - I knocked on the door of the house and asked the owner if I could grab some of the wood. Looking surprised, the owner said: "&^$$^&%& council was meant to remove the wood/branches last week so YES .. thank you very much".

I normally throw in buzz-words like "recycling" and "environment" and of course woodfired oven when asking for wood and that always proves a reasonable explanation for my asking.

After getting permission, I loaded my car up with all of the available wood and stacked it with my other very large pile. Split a few of the logs to test splitability and to see the grain etc. Confirmed that it is top quality, hot/long burning Whitegum. Should have enough wood there for about 50 firings. Still have about 1.5 years worth of wood in the back garden so well taken care of for now.

Definitely worth grabbing wood when you see it tossed out. Always seems to be plenty available. Getting it for free sure beats paying $195 per ton for it.
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Old 03-20-2011, 02:51 AM
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Thumbs up Re: Great Find - Whitegum - Free

Rosco, get your oven really hot and you can burn the green whitewood without any problems at all.
The thing with you people in the west (for all the foreigners reading this, Perth is west of the rest of us in Australia and in Western Australia) have a huge supply of timer quite close to you but we here in South Australia are transporting firewood some 800km and paying around $300 per ton.
Grab what you can or free!
Even the tree pruners are cashing in and selling their cuts for around $200 per ton which after their often exaubitant fees is just the cream

Neill
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Old 03-20-2011, 04:11 AM
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Default Re: Great Find - Whitegum - Free

Yes - we are lucky indeed to have this available for free. It really doesn't seem to have a value and people really think I'm crazy knocking on their door asking for it.

I am rotating the wood that I am using. I have some 6-8 months old that is ultra dry, but the green wood is dry and ready for use in about 2-3 weeks. The hot weather of late acts like a furnace too so it is dry in no time at all.

Due to the supply I can also be very selective in what I pick. I sometimes see wood on the verge and stop and get a sample. Feel the weight to get an idea of density, split it and check inside for resin etc. I am starting to get quite a good understanding of the types that grow here as a result.
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Old 03-20-2011, 12:51 PM
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Location: Townsville, Nth Queensland,Australia
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Default Re: Great Find - Whitegum - Free

rosco,
I found if you can cut it into slices about 100 mm thick whilst still green it is far easier to split. It also dries out quicker this way. Long lengths especially when seasoned are difficult to split. The thicker the pieces are the denser they seem to be also. Best wood is free wood.
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Old 03-20-2011, 01:26 PM
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Default Re: Great Find - Whitegum - Free

Rossco

Find most of my supply to date from demolitions and renovations. QLD homes were built of hardwood. I'm just getting through my neighbours renovation and am about to start on a church.......

Regards Dave
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Old 03-20-2011, 03:02 PM
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I had an old wood cutter friend drop off 6 very old, dead and dry redgum blocks around 400mm diameter the other day and I split them for the oven. One will well do a good firing so there is enough for 5 more plus I have a heap of olive and other exotic woods (which I collected for woodturning many years ago).
Like you Rosco, I don't turn away free wood. It is too good an opportunity to ignore. I also have a slow combustion heater up here in the rumpus room where I live each night and the wife uses as a drying room in winter which can use much of my supply

Neill
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