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Black Walnut as firewood

Discussion in 'Firewood, Heating and Wood Burning Equipment' started by Jimfound, Dec 5, 2006.

  1. Jimfound

    Jimfound ArboristSite Operative

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    I don't need to tell anyone here that there are better uses for walnut than as firewood....

    But, long story short, a friend cut up a black walnut tree that fell in his yard before I could save it. I graciously accepted the firewood :) The wood has been split and stacked (cross-hatch) since february, and I am now getting around to burning it. Could maybe wait another summer to be fully seasoned, but its pretty well dried-out. My conclusion is that walnut does not burn very hot. It does burn long, and coals fairly well, but not that great in terms of BTU.

    On the other hand ELM...well lets just say I put ELM right up there with Locust for heat....nearly impossible to split but sure does burn hot...and forever. No smoke, no ash and great coals with ELM. I often see ELM on firewood rating charts as somewhere in the middle...as a medium hardwood, along the lines of walnut. I call foul. Anyone else have experience burning ELM? Its great for heat but such a PITA to deal with.

    Anyway...great site here...glad I found it. Stay warm.
     
  2. Husky137

    Husky137 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I think elm sucks as firewood.
     
  3. woodchux

    woodchux Addicted to ArboristSite

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    My favorite wood to burn is redtips
     
  4. sawinredneck

    sawinredneck Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Welcome to AS :clap:

    I think Elm sucks for firewood as well!! Walnut is a good hardwood and burns nice, also has a nice arouma to it!! Enjoy it!!
    Andy
     
  5. Dr. Hackemoff

    Dr. Hackemoff ArboristSite Operative

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    I've only burned about five cords of black walnut, seasoned one year outside, one year in, and I agree, it's middle of the road at best. Not desirable for heating in low temps (ten degrees + wind). I love ash, so everything seasons longer than it because ash is drier when cut green.

    I'm burning elm now in low temps and high winds. Ash with bark burns poorly initially - little heat! Slow to heat things up. But it does coal with the best and they last, IF you can wait. Elm cut standing dead with falling bark is IDEAL IMO. Dense, and burns hot thruout.

    I have elm (green - crap) seasoning in the yard now and I swear I won't burn it until it's dead dry, probably two years.

    da hack
     
  6. wdchuck

    wdchuck Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I've burned many elm varieties and have found it sometimes burns hot, or not. THe dead standing, no bark, for a couple years does seem to burn nice and hot, but anything that has had the bark on and is kinda heavy in the hand doesn't seem to good. I'll be doing an experiment on this next year, just for personal insight and kicks. Walnut, medium heat in my opinion.
     
  7. Pollock777

    Pollock777 ArboristSite Member

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    Walnut

    About 2 yrs. ago we took down a blk. walnut tree in absecon n.j. it was 58" at the base and had a straight run of 15 ft. and no one wanted it. Called the mills and they said because it came out of a home oweners yard they didn't want it. So it was cut up for firewood. If anybody knows of anyone that would take it in south New Jersey please let me know. Thanks Tony:jester:
     
  8. Husky137

    Husky137 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Good luck on that. My experience is that it will rot before drying.
     
  9. Freakingstang

    Freakingstang Doctor Freakinstein

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    Dead standing Elm without bark is great wood, although a bear to split. my 372 normally splits the elm..lol.

    now, green Elm with the bark....I have about 2 cord left from last year. it was the base of a dead stading tree i took down. it is still green, wet, heavy and rotting... Been split and stacked since it was cut down....

    I like Ash. Little dry time and great heating properties. if I don't have ash, i use the normal red and white oak. Gotta throw some wild cherry in their too. Burns good, gets the fire going good for the longer burning oak.
     
  10. habanero

    habanero AboristSite Guru

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    I agree with that. I've also burnt several different varieties and found a great difference in splitting ease and burning quality. I don't think I've ever seen as much difference in different varieties of other types of trees as I've seen in elm. Weird stuff...
     
  11. wdchuck

    wdchuck Addicted to ArboristSite

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    There's three or four elm varieties growing on my property, I need an expert to help identify everything, specifically, that is here, over 15 species in all, then there's the bush size stuff. oyvae.
     
  12. tribalwind

    tribalwind ArboristSite Member

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    i picked up some english walnut log sections that someone was giving away for possible firewood.:cry:
    now it's destiny will be as some woodturnings and native american flutes.

    i have a whole pile of pecan also,more than i'll ever use for craftwork.
    have offered it at swaps and give to other woodworkers,not too much interest thus far..i'll probably burn some in my worshop woodstove this winter. the colds finally set in here in LI,NY.
     
  13. PA. Woodsman

    PA. Woodsman Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Walnut is about average in my opinion.

    I would rate Walnut as about a 7 to 7.5 on a scale of 0-10; it has a nice, unique aroma, but you're right, it doesn't overwhelm you with heat. It burns okay, but sometimes it kind of "chars" rather than burn completely; yet, I too, keep taking it for use! It must be the aroma that attracts me? :D
     
  14. buckwheat

    buckwheat AboristSite Guru

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    I find walnut leaves a lot of ashes to clean out.
     
  15. MS-310

    MS-310 AboristSite Guru

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    Well I know some one here likes ElM...here in MI we have so much of it here that its a really good choice its allways dead and no bark. I have never cut an live tree down to heat with...used the wood to but not just for heating.
     
  16. laynes69

    laynes69 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I would burn elm over walnut anyday. I take down the elm trees that are missing their bark, and in it goes. Walnut is a okay wood to burn, but my favorite is either osage orange, or locust.
     
  17. EastwoodGang4

    EastwoodGang4 ArboristSite Operative

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    Dead Elms

    Those dead elms without bark are good in my book too. there's quite a few here in Ohio as well. And if it's free wood no matter what kind isn't it all worth burning?????
     
  18. morningwood

    morningwood ArboristSite Lurker

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    I agree that locust is great wood to burn. The problem that I found with osage orange is that it dulls up your chain so fast that it is not worth cutting in my eyes.

    I see that you are in OH, as I am too. If you are interested in some osage orange trees let me know as I have a few that need cleaned up. ;)

    Scott
     
  19. laynes69

    laynes69 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Where are you located? Have you ever cut locust trees that have been dead for 10+ years? The chain will bounce off them as you cut. Its worth it, I save those woods for very cold nights.
     
  20. morningwood

    morningwood ArboristSite Lurker

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    I live about 30 minutes north of Columbus in Southern Morrow County.

    Most of the locust trees that I have cut are either green or they have fell down over the past few years. All of the locust that I am cutting is black locust with the nasty thorns in them. I cut down a couple in the spring and pulled them into my field and let them dry out pretty well and then was able to know the thorns off with my boot. Most of the black locust trees that I do have are pretty small but I do have a few big ones that I hope to get down next year sometime. The forestry guys says they are a weed tree and will take over your forest if you do not keep them in check.

    The osage orange tree that I tried to cut up has probably been laying down for about 3 - 5 years. I cut on it for about 10 minutes and my saw was dull as a butter knife when I got done. :cry:

    Scott
     

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