Originally Posted by firefighteremt153
My question is, is sweet gum lumber worth a darn? bad tendency to warp and curl really bad? Has anyone ever milled any sweet gum on here and is it worth all the work or would it be a waste of money?
That does look like a big devil. The lumber is very pretty...but what you read about it wanting to move while drying is right on. I have sawed alot of it, and ruined alot of it trying to dry it when I first started sawmilling. I could not keep it flat when I sawed it 4/4, just couldn't do it
. Some of the sawyers down south say they don't have the problems we do here up north, I honestly don't know why that is. Now I have learned to not try to get any wide slabs (they like to cup), and I saw plenty thick. Since I have a mill and can resaw, I saw it 2 1/8" thick and let it air dry and then saw 4/4 (or near than) out of it later.
Another thing about sweet gum is it spalts great. That interlocking grain, Capt. called it "absolute MURDER to split for firewood", looks killer with spalt running through it. I will add a picture later. I think letting it spalt lessons some of the tension too, just from my experience.
I don't think it would be a waste of time to have it milled. It is neat wood, really smooth grain it machines well (makes good turning stock too). And the center is often called red gum. It is 2 trees in one really, the light wood and the dark heart (which is not very big usually, but that is a good sized log)
I'd go for it. Have it sawn at least 5/4 (maybe 6/4) and pile everything you can on top of it to keep it flat. It makes great furniture wood.