Frequently Asked Questions
-Do you saw other people’s logs, or kiln dry other people’s lumber or slabs?
No, I no longer saw other people’s logs, nor do I do any custom drying.
-Where are you located? What are your hours?
I’m usually available 9-5, Monday through Saturday, by appointment only. Due to the amount of inventory I have, it can take hours to dig through and find what you might be looking for, so everything must be done by appointment. I am located South of Menomonie, Wisconsin about 15-20 minutes off I-94. When you contact me to make an appointment, I will give you my address.
-Where do your logs come from? Are you cutting old growth trees out of forests?
Other than pine, very few of the logs I cut come from forests. Almost all of the hardwood logs I cut are urban trees that have been rescued from a burn pile or landfill. Most were removed because they were dead or dying or presented a safety hazard. Because they are urban trees, most contain metal or other foreign objects making them dangerous for most commercial mills to cut. I have developed methods of sawing urban trees and removing the metal without destroying my equipment. I believe in rescuing these fallen giants and turning them into usable products. A tree that grew for decades should be made into beautiful products to live on for decades longer.
– Do you ship slabs/lumber across the country?
Yes. I ship small slabs and lumber by UPS, and large orders by FedEx Freight. For more information click here. Or if you want to show up with a truck and trailer or semi I will be happy to load it for you. All orders must be paid in full before shipping or pickup.
– Are your slabs kiln dried?
Due to the sheer volume of slabs that I cut, there is a never-ending backlog at my kiln. Prior to going in the kiln everything is air dried 1-2 years to bring the moisture content down to a more reasonable level. Caution must be used before placing a slab in a very dry environment to prevent degradation. Slabs need to be dried slowly. Customers are welcome to purchase green slabs if they have drying experience or access to a kiln.
– Will you warranty your slabs against cracking or warping or other forms of degradation?
No. Wood slabs remain “living” breathing organisms long after they die and are sawed into slabs. I do not have the God-like ability to control how wood shrinks and reacts to changing moisture. I will however give you plenty of advice to help set you up for success with a slab. Care must be taken when using a slab to account for the sheer size and seasonal movement.
– You have a slab on your website that I really like. Will you hold it for me?
Under no circumstances will I hold any inventory. If you want it then you must purchase it or put a deposit on it until you pick it up or arrange shipping.
– Can you provide a detailed list of your inventory?
My slab inventory is changing on a daily basis. Let me know what you’re looking for and I will be happy to let you know if I have it.
– What methods of payment do you accept?
I accept cash, check, credit card, and bank transfers. If a check is used for an order being shipped, then the order will be held 7-10 days until the check clears. All orders must be paid in full prior to pickup. No exceptions.
– I have a highly valuable 12″ diameter Walnut tree growing in my yard. What will you pay me for it?
Unfortunately there is a myth that just because a tree is Walnut that it is worth a lot of money. Its not. Larger trees can be, but usually nothing smaller than a 24″ in diameter (not circumference) that is free of metal, limbs, etc. Over 95% of the yard trees I saw have metal in them. And no, your yard tree is not a highly valuable old growth Walnut veneer tree worth thousands of dollars. You will not be able to repave your driveway or pay off your car with the value of any walnut tree that you can wrap your arms around. For more detailed info click here.
– I have a couple large trees in my yard next to my house/garage. If you cut them down you can have the wood.
If you want to hire a tree service to take them down I may be interested in buying them from you. In almost every case though the value of such yard trees is far less than the cost of having them removed. If you are interested I can refer you to one of the various tree services I work with around Wisconsin and Minnesota. If the tree is sound and a current species and size I’m looking for then I could give you something to offset the cost of having it removed.
– What is my yard tree worth?
Values range all over the place for a variety of reasons, but typically they are not as valuable as a tree that was grown in the forest. No commercial mill is going to touch a yard tree. Why? Over 95% of the yard trees I have sawed over the years have metal or other foreign objects in them that destroy sawblades. The purchase price must be low to offset the cost of damaged equipment from the process of sawing into nails, lag screws, screw hooks, spikes, rocks, horseshoes, and other foreign objects that homeowners have placed into their yard trees over the years. I am always on the lookout for large trees to keep them from being cut into firewood or hauled to the dump. If you have a log at least 24″ in diameter please contact me. If you have a cherished tree that you would like to have made into a piece of furniture I can help with that as well.
– Why does it take so long to dry your slabs? Why cant you dry them in 30 days like the other guys?
I have been sawing lumber and slabs and drying them for over a decade. In recent years it seems like everyone wants to jump on the slab bandwagon. Every time I turn around there is some new individual with a sawmill cutting slabs and claiming to dry them quickly. After doing this for a decade, I can honestly tell you it is not possible to dry a freshly sawn thick hardwood slab in under 30 days in a normal kiln. Worse yet are the claims that this can be accomplished in a solar kiln, a drying chamber entirely dependent on the weather, that only operates during daylight hours, on days without clouds. It is not possible to quickly dry thick, fresh sawn, hardwood slabs in a solar kiln, or in a dehumidification kiln. Not only does a solar kiln not get anywhere near warm enough during winter in the upper Midwest, but thick hardwood simply does not give up its moisture that quick. This is not a matter of opinion or technique, its basic wood science that can be verified by any expert in the country. It takes months for the moisture inside of a hardwood slab to migrate to the surface where it can evaporate off. On a slower drying species like white oak, the drying cycle in a dehumidification kiln like mine that operates 24 hours a day can be as long as five months, and will still result in significant cracking and warping. It could take a year or more in a solar kiln with a slower drying species like white oak and would still result in degradation. To say that freshly sawn hardwood slabs can be dried in merely 30 days in a solar kiln in the upper Midwest is an incredibly dishonest claim and one we hope that not too many customers will fall for and forever be scared of buying a slab after it warps and cracks inside their home. The only way to quickly dry a hardwood slab without significant degrade is in a vacuum kiln. They start at roughly $125,000, putting them beyond the reach of most businesses. Never, ever buy a “kiln dried” wood slab without proof of the moisture content. If they refuse, or say they do not have a moisture meter, then do not buy it, because they have no way of verifying their claim that it is kiln dried. A moisture meter is a very basic tool that every competent, legitimate seller of kiln dried slabs should possess. A slab dried to at least 6-8% moisture in the middle (NOT on the very end or on an edge of the slab) is generally ready to use if you let it acclimate inside for a week or two. A slab with a moisture content in the upper teens or even the 20s is nowhere near dry enough and will warp and crack horribly if you move it indoors. A slab over 30% moisture is still soaking wet and above the fiber saturation point and has not even begun to even shrink yet. Never, ever assume that a “kiln dried” slab is at the proper moisture content. Do not just take their word for it. Buying a wood slab without verifying the moisture content is like buying a used car without taking it for a test drive.
– I sent you a message via the contact form a while ago. Why haven’t I heard back from you?
My apologies. I work seven days a week but still fall behind. Shoot me another message and I’ll try to get back to you.