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Wood supply?

 
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NAVET
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Joined: 20 Aug 2010
Posts: 241
Location: Vienna, Mo

PostPosted: Sep 25 2015    Post subject: Wood supply? Reply with quote

I'm trying to decide on my next smoker to buy. Right now I'm leaning towards either a Pitmaker or LoneStar Grills insulated smoker. ONLY because it is much easier for me to find smoker fuel. IE charcoal and wood chunks. I'd like to move up to an offset but finding a source for a large supply of wood is difficult. I have some land but not enough large, mature trees that I could cut down.

There are a couple places within 2-3 hours to get wood but the cost is what I am curious about. $270 for a 1/2 cord of apple and $135 for 1/2 cord of Oak. Are those reasonable prices or not? I've never had to buy wood on that scale before so I am clueless as to what the cost should be or night be.

How long can I expect that to last? The apple would be for pork and the oak for brisket. Obviously that is very hard to tell as it is based on how often you cook , how long, etc. I am ok with a ballpark SWAG.
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Smokin Mike
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PostPosted: Sep 25 2015    Post subject: Reply with quote

Since wood prices vary by locale you might want to get on Craig's list and search for "firewood" in the General section. A sampling of ads will tell you the going price in your neck of the woods.

Here, most folks sell by the truck load and it's hard to tell how much wood you're actually getting. Occasionally someone will list cord and 1/2 cord prices.
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k.a.m.
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PostPosted: Sep 25 2015    Post subject: Reply with quote

The oak is right in line with what I pay here delivered and stacked. I only wish I could get apple. Sad
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enduro
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PostPosted: Sep 25 2015    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can confirm that wood prices will vary by type and location, if available at all. I personally have never spent a dime to buy wood - unless you consider the considerable cost of the chainsaw, log splitter, travel expense to harvest, and time to cut and split, etc.

The limited amount of wood that you actually use may surprise you. Obviously it will be based on the size of the cooker and the time and temps that each cook involves, but when I take my Lang 48 offsite, I bring along about 3 splits per hour of anticipated cooking time - plus a few more for good measure. I cut and split my logs to the approximate size of my forearm (12" long x 4" wide). Now, many times when you purchase wood commercially, the logs will be cut to 16" lengths but you get what I'm saying. Once you determine what cooker to buy, if you have a realistic idea of how much you will be actually using the cooker, you should be able to get a good feel for how much wood you'll use in a typical year and adjust from there. Don't forget that no matter how much you like bbq, you probably won't be cooking 3 meals a day, 7 days a week once the novelty wears off.

Searching Craigslist in your area was an excellent recommendation for current market conditions.
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BigOrson
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PostPosted: Sep 25 2015    Post subject: Reply with quote

I paid about $200 this summer for 1/2 cord of cherry that had been split and seasoned for over a year. I know that seems high, but cherry is hard to come by in these parts. I'm going to be ordering some oak/hickory for the fireplace in the next month and I expect to pay about $200 for a full face cord. Two years ago, I could get a mixture of oak, cherry and hickory for about $85 a cord, but apparently the guys out there that sell firewood finally figured out what Home Depot was getting for wood and raised their prices accordingly.
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Smokin Mike
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PostPosted: Sep 25 2015    Post subject: Reply with quote

NAVET, It's probably different in your area but here folks are giving wood away for free if you just come and cut it up. Of course you got to have access to a chain saw and wood splitter. If it's not my neighbors having a downed tree from a storm it's usually someone on Craig's list giving it away. I haven't purchased any wood in over 10 years I believe. I got most everything that's indigenous to my area; oak, maple, cherry, hickory and whatever else comes my way.
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Jim38344
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PostPosted: Sep 25 2015    Post subject: Reply with quote

I bought a half cord of hickory last fall for $75.00. It was cut to 16" and split down to about 2 x 4 size. I don't know if that's typical or not, but it sounded mighty good to me.
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NAVET
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PostPosted: Sep 25 2015    Post subject: Reply with quote

The nearest locale for Craigslist in our area is Springfield, Mo. which is about 2 hours from me. What we do have locally is rollanet. It's sort of an online classifieds type of thing. You can post stuff for sale or stuff you're looking for. I'll check it out and see what I can see.
I just wanted to make sure the cost of what I've seen so far online isn't over the top high.
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brutus1964
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PostPosted: Sep 25 2015    Post subject: Reply with quote

NAVET...check around your local area for any hardwood manufacturing plants or lumber processing plants. A few years ago there were several of these facilities down around West Plains and Van Buren Mo. many times these facilities will give you scraps or cull lumber to haul it off. If it isn't free is usually very cheap and usually in usable lengths. You may have to drive an hour or so but this may be a good source. I have a sawmill about 40 miles away that I get hickory cut to about 16" x 2" pieces and get about a years supply (for my needs) for about $35 and they load in on my trailer on a pallet. I just restack it and don't have to cut it. This may be an option.
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NAVET
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PostPosted: Sep 25 2015    Post subject: Reply with quote

I didn't even consider looking for a sawmill. Thanks brutus!
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suckaass
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PostPosted: Sep 26 2015    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are there any orchards near you? I found that some the orchards around here will sell you wood for a lot less than what people are asking for on Craigslist.

I have a 20" off-set and after I get a good bed of coals from some lump, I can maintain my desired temp by adding a ~3" dia. x 16" piece of wood every 45 min or so, depending on weather conditions.

I pick up an apple crate full of apple wood (approx. 1/4 cord) for $40 at an orchard a couple hours from me every fall, and it lasts me all year. Of course I only fire up my cooker once or twice a month Rolling Eyes
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phil c
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PostPosted: Sep 26 2015    Post subject: Reply with quote

Don't forget any local tree service companies.
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