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dismount
11-23-2014, 05:18 PM
On my father in laws land I found a small shed still locked so I broke in in and found a bunch of, looks like 8" by 5" by 8" timbers of WRC. Said to have been put in there in the 70's. covered with webs and rat nests but really pretty stuff. Would it be worth dragging it out and getting it to uke builders here? Don't know if old growth or not. Any suggestions? or does it need to go to the firewood pile? Phil

Chris_H
11-23-2014, 06:11 PM
Sounds like it is not firewood. It should be well seasoned by now! As to whether it is suitable for instrument use, without seeing it, it is difficult to say. If, when you look at the end of a board, and the grain is exactly in plane with one of the faces, not at any angle at all, and if the grain lines are very tight, and the cants are clear of any knots or defect, then yes, they may be instrument grade. Most likely, it is not.


Regardless, WRC is a valuable wood. Those beams are worth something to someone. probably a lot. If they are clear cants from old growth Cedar ..... that is what you are looking for. Super tight, and dead quartered, very straight grain. If you see circular arc patterns in the end grain of the beams, not so much.

DennisK
11-23-2014, 06:54 PM
+1 to Chris. You need to get a good look at the grain orientation and how many defects there are to estimate the value for instruments. Grain spacing is only cosmetic, but tight grain fetches a much higher price.

If any of them are quartersawn on the 8" face, I want harp guitar tops :)

dismount
11-24-2014, 03:24 AM
Thanks, thanksgiving I'll go to the farm and get pics and post them

Michael Smith
11-24-2014, 05:54 AM
Could be some nice wood in the pile. Most of the red cedar cut in the 70s was old growth. It was and still is a very common wood here on the West Coast. It's not a valuable wood like Koa or Rosewood. Beautiful top wood can be purchased at the local lumber yard for 6$ per board foot. I would think the market as a private seller would be limited.

dismount
11-24-2014, 06:11 AM
Could be some nice wood in the pile. Most of the red cedar cut in the 70s was old growth. It was and still is a very common wood here on the West Coast. It's not a valuable wood like Koa or Rosewood. Beautiful top wood can be purchased at the local lumber yard for 6$ per board foot. I would think the market as a private seller would be limited.
Thank you for that info might leave it lay

sequoia
11-24-2014, 06:23 AM
Could be some nice wood in the pile. Most of the red cedar cut in the 70s was old growth. It was and still is a very common wood here on the West Coast. It's not a valuable wood like Koa or Rosewood. Beautiful top wood can be purchased at the local lumber yard for 6$ per board foot. I would think the market as a private seller would be limited.

Interesting point Michael. But isn't the lumber yard stuff flat sawn? Can it be used that way? I've never used WRC, but I think I will try one for a sound board.... Below a picture of an old growth red cedar from Washington State.

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Kent Chasson
11-24-2014, 06:51 AM
It's not too hard to find well-quartered cedar (uke sized) in lumber stores here in the northwest. You may have to dig to find them but it's around. Since much of the old growth was cut over 100 years ago, there is also a great deal of excellent quality second growth. The second growth tends to get more sun and grow faster so the growth rings are wider. If longitudinal stiffness/weight ratio is what you're after, the second growth is often superior.

Michael Smith
11-24-2014, 07:21 AM
The way they cut this type of lumber a certain percentage of the tree ends up being quarter sawn. Think of holding a knife horizontally to the end of a log and slicing the long in 2 inch slabs. When you get near the center you will have quarter sawn slabs. I cut a bunch of cedar tops about a month ago from the local lumber yard. They cost me about $2 per, maybe a little less. If you could sell them in any quantity for even $10 you could become a rich man but the market is too limited.

jcalkin
11-24-2014, 03:33 PM
Creative sawing could turn a lot of otherwise useless wood into fine instrument stock. Huss & Dalton scored 20-some red spruce logs that were cut to stop an infection from spreading in the National Forest, something like a fire break. After bucking and splitting, we had a barn-full of quarters and halves. I built a simple carriage that could orient the chunks anyway desired to the bandsaw blade, and we made enough quartered brace stock for thousands of guitars. We never quite got a guitar top out of them, but uke tops would have been easy. Maybe the same could be done with dismount's cedar. Whether worth the effort or not depends on a lot of factors.