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lumber "mill ends" - what about them?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Sorry for the re-post, but this was technically in the wrong area before...I just noticed so I'm reposting here:

I put an "items wanted" ad on Craigslist this morning and within a few hours I got a response. Now that I'm stick burning, I was hoping to find someone with good seasoned wood for sale.

This guy has runs small saw mill about 30 miles from me, and he said he GIVES AWAY his mill ends. His email to me said that most of them are 2"-4" thick chunks 6'-10' long. Sounds perfect, doesn't it?!? He has oak, hickory, cherry, sugar maple and even mulberry.

The reason for my post, is that while messing around on the internet, I stumbled upon a "wood burning basics" website...hosted by some guy with a chimney sweeping business, who said to never use mill ends in your wood stove because it is "tremendously corrosive to metal".

Of course, I'm not getting these to heat a wood stove, but beings that my smoker is a close relative to the wood stove, should I be concerned? I mean, we all know that the mixture of ash and moisture is corrosive, which is why you have to clean out your firebox regularly, but should I have any additional concern about the particular "cut" of the wood I'm smoking with, as long as it's a seasoned hardwood? I wouldn't think so but you all are the experts :-)

Please share your thoughts. "Free" is my favorite 4 letter word, so I'd like to use this wood if possible!

I can't figure why mill ends would be any more corrosive to burn than any other cut of the same type of wood? Maybe this guy is nuts...


post #2 of 11
I guess my first question to the guy giving away the wood is. Are they chemically treated in anyway? If the answer is no then I don't see what the problem is.

Just my 2 cents.
post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
That is a good question, and the answer is no - he does not deal with treated lumber. A "local guy" as he put it, has been taking all of his hickory and has been smoking with it for years. Since I'm only 25 miles or so away, I'm still fairly local, so I'm going to check it out!
post #4 of 11
If the wood hasn't been sprayed with anything it should work. Sounds like you may have found a great source
post #5 of 11
Be willing ta bet it's green and just needs to be seasoned
post #6 of 11
And maybe boxed up and shared with others here wink.gif
post #7 of 11


I agree with it being green. The stove guy wouldn't burn it because of creosote build up. I think it probably just needs to be seasoned. WOW what a find!
post #8 of 11
definitely unseasoned (runs a small saw mill.. it's cut off the log and fresh as a daisy and he just wants to get rid of it, it's like the outer slab wood, not good for much, will shrink like crazy and crack and warp and is PERFECT for burning!). Just stack it somewhere so it can get air to it and leave it for 6 mo. to a year, keep picking it up and rotating it through and you now have an endless supply of stick food for your smoker! If you try to burn it green you'll get way too much creosote built up inside your smoker and besides the metal reaction you'll get a bad creosote taste to everything you cook, but patience has it's virtue - like free wood in 2010! Great find! Now if ya wanna chop it in 2' lengths box it up and ship it I'd be more than glad to age it for ya... ....

Pops ยงยง
post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 

Gene, he says its already seasoned. He said that he cut it last Spring and summer for last years winter heat, and just had too much. I guess as long as heating season is over here in Central IL, I'm good...damn sure better be done with winter heating bills!

Of course, I thought the same thing about it maybe being green wood, since he has a saw mill in his back yard...that it would be "fresher" wood, if you will. However, in his words, he keeps "cooking wood and wood for heat, seperate from saw mill lumber" So - looks promising!

Which brings me to Phils comment: I will share with anyone who wants to come on over once I get it icon_smile.gif They can take some home!

(( Ribs seem to finish a lot quicker when there's someone here to drink with me. rolleyes.gif ))
post #10 of 11
The only reason they would be corrosive is ifin yer burnin it green. Otherwise, it's from the same tree.

From the sounds of it, he got alota good smokin woods there. I'd get what ya can from him, wouldn't stock pile more en what ya can use in two years an rotate it out.

Nice find!
post #11 of 11
It sounds like the same deal I got going. I get all my smokin' wood from a sawmill. After a little while out behind the shed to air dry for a bit, it is good to go to the smoker. Nice find!PDT_Armataz_01_34.gif
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