Saw dust

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Master of the Pit
Original poster
OTBS Member
Dec 19, 2005
Beautiful Grand Rapids Michigan
I have a friend of mine that does a fair amount of wood working.

He has sawdust from what he is telling me is untreated wood (He makes wood picture frames).

He typically has a few 55 gallon drums of the sawdust from cherry, oak and maple.

Does anyone know is this ok to use and if so does any one want any?
I go thru about 120 lbs of saw dust a year. As long as the wood is untreated it would be fine. I get mine from a buddy that actually has his own sawmill. Just my 2 cents.
I've installed hardwood trim <maple> and oak flooring I have used both.. I've used both the cutoffs and the saw dust and have had great results. throwing in my nickle.

As a side note as soon as the weather gets a bit cooler I will be trimming my cherry tree and they will be trimming the apple trees in the area. Granted they will be green but should have plenty to share.
I've use sawdust to make paraffin fire starters, but I've heard other say they used it for smoking, although I'm not sure how. There are indoor stovetop smokers that use sawdust too.

Sawdust from chainsaws contain a high amount of oil so if a food grade oil wasn't used in the saw, I'd stay away from it. Saw mills and woodworking tools that use dry blades would be 100% OK.
Good point Bob

Whattaya think, being as pariffin is petroleum based too, do you think chainsaw dust would be OK for firestarters?
Food-grade paraffin wax is used in some candies to make them look shiny. Although edible, it is nondigestible; it passes right through the body without being broken down. Non-food grade paraffin wax can contain oils and other impurities which may be toxic or harmful.

Chainsaw oil hasn't been used in any candy I've ever eaten.

It would most likely burn up (between the firestarter burning and the charcoal burning) long before reaching your cooking equipment so I believe the likely hood of consuming the actual oil is negligable. Charcoal lighter fluid is petrolium based too and folks use a much larger dose to get the fuel going than what would be contained in a little starter. :lol: But I still prefer "clean" sawdust.

I've made starters only from sawdust created by a bowsaw. :)
:shock: That's alotta bowsawin' for a few firestarters. I think I'll just stick to my chimneys. :lol:

Do you have any idea what goes into Duraflame firestarters? I'm sure there's pariffin, but there's also something in there that makes them a little gooey. I use them to fire up my big smoker, and sometimes my firepit. I hadn't really thought much about it. Maybe I shouldn't use them. I just figured it didn't much matter as they would be totally burnt up before I started cooking.
I would be concerned about any sawdust that I didn't create. Sawdust from PT pine and other plywoods could contain chemicals that could be harmful. is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

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