PYRO’S CORNER

FAQ’S FOR FIREWOOD & KINDLING

From Lukeswood.com     Have a question?

Just ask Pyro…Email info@lukeswood.com  

 

   
Q Does softwood split easier than hardwood?
A

Yes, softwood splits easier and both split the easiest while green.

   
Q What is a cord of wood?
A The dictionary defines it as 128 cubic feet, four feet wide x four feet tall x eight feet long.
   
Q What is a face cord?
A One third of a full cord equals a face cord, typically sixteen inches wide x four feet tall x eight feet long.
   
Q Does hardwood burn hotter than softwood?
A Yes, hardwood is denser and has a 65% higher BTU value.
   
Q What is seasoned versus green wood?
A

 

Green firewood could have 50% moisture as fresh cut and starts to dry out slowly.  Seasoned wood has multiple cracks on the ends and advanced seasoned wood will also look grayer.
   
Q What is the best method to season wood?
A

 

 

Stack wood with plenty of air space between logs and stacked rows for six months so the sun can accelerate the drying process.  Then cover the top of the rows.  I use tin metal roofing with a few logs on top so the wind does not move it.  Another method is to stack in a well ventilated wood shed with good air flow between logs.  Wood dries a little slower without the sun on it.  In either case, it will be ready after one year with a moisture content close to 20%.  Oak will need two years.
   
Q What is the best wood furnace?
A

 

My opinion, the Kuma Gasification Wood Furnace.  It is the most efficient, with least emissions, stainless steel, great features and of course the most expensive.
   
Q What is the difference between a wood furnace boiler and a wood furnace?
A

 

 

They both hold large amounts of firewood.  The boiler type has a metal jacket (tank) holding water to be heated for transfer to baseboard hot water or heat exchange for forced hot air or for radiant floor heating.  Think of the wood furnace as a large wood stove with some models offering forced hot air which can be connected to duct work for even heat distribution.
   
Q What is the best chain saw?
A

 

My opinion, Stihl due to ergonomic features.  I also own a Husqvarna as well.  It runs just as good, so for me it is just the features that make the difference.
   
Q How does one make his own firewood equipment, i.e. log splitter, conveyor or processor?
A  See www.millerswoodcutting.com or www.northerntools.com
   
Q What is the difference between a wood furnace and a wood stove?
A

 

The simplest answer is to say the furnace holds more wood.  Another is wood stoves offer more models with glass doors than wood furnaces.  Stoves are more regulated for EPA emissions.
   
Q What is the best wood stove?
A

 

My opinion, based on research about price, emissions, glass door size, features, heat output and 10 hour burn time is the Lopi Endeavor producing 74000 BTU’s to heat up to 2000 square feet.
   
Q What is the best wood to burn?
A

 

It is a matter of preference as the main hardwood group contains almost equal BTU values such as ash, birch, cherry, beech and maple.  Oak and hickory are denser and have higher BTU values.
   
Q What is the difference between seasoned wood and kiln dried wood?
A

 

 

Seasoned wood is naturally air dried and will reach 20% moisture content after 9-12 months. With kiln dried wood, the moisture is forced out by placing the firewood in an enclosed insulated box and heated to 160 degrees for 75 minutes for NYSDEC requirements or 140 degrees for 60 minutes for USDA approval, leaving a moisture content of approximately 15%.  This process takes 3-4 days of heating.
   
Q What are state firewood restrictions?
A Most states adhere to a transportation distance of a 50 mile radius from origin point to end user location if the wood is not kiln dried.
   
Q Why can kiln dried firewood go beyond a 50 mile radius?
A

 

After being heated to a minimum 140 degrees for 60 minutes, all bugs have perished so there is no concern about infesting a virgin area with bugs such as the Asian long horned beetle and the beetle ash borer.
   
Q How far can kiln dried wood be transported?
A

 

 If USDA certificate has been granted, then any place in the USA.  If no USDA certificate, then only within state if meeting conservation laws of that state.
   
Q When was the first chain saw made?
A

 

Around 1830 the Osteotome as invented by a German, Bernard Heine.  It was a very small chain saw for surgical use to cut through hard bone.  Major manufactures of chain saws claim to have invented the first ones in the 1920’s.
   
Q Do you need a flue pipe thermometer?
A

 

 

No, you do not need one.  However you will notice they all show the best heat range to burn in, typically 250 degrees to 475 degrees.  We have always used one.  They are fairly inexpensive.   Many times I have felt that my stove was burning too hot…time to cut back on secondary air flow.  The flue pipe thermometer confirms your thoughts.  It’s an aid not a cure-all.
   

 

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