What to do with that sawdust? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 16 Old 10-16-2007, 12:35 PM Thread Starter
 
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What to do with that sawdust?

Can I take my sawdust and saturate it in water and glue, and after it dries use it in my outdoor firepit? Put it in some form to get a usable shape.

Anybody ever do anything like that?
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post #2 of 16 Old 10-16-2007, 01:17 PM
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Isn't that how they make those fake "logs" that you buy at the grocery? We made newspaper "logs" by rolling them and tying with wire, soaking in brine and letting them dry in the sun.

Actually, sawdust (except walnut) is good for flowerbed mulch, and if you have a neighbor or friend with chickens, it also makes good chicken bedding and floor "stuff."

Nancy (66 days)

I'm editing this to clarify what I'm calling "sawdust" -- I'm referring to the chips that come off the table saw, jointer, planer, or router. SawDUST is a killer and needs to be collected via some sort of dedicated dust collector to keep it out of your lungs!!!

Nancy and Dave Laird
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David works in the Pro Sales Divison at Woodworker's Supply.

Last edited by Nancy Laird; 10-16-2007 at 01:32 PM. Reason: Clarification
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post #3 of 16 Old 10-16-2007, 01:31 PM
 
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Why not give it a try?

Most of my sawdust goes in the compost bin.
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post #4 of 16 Old 10-16-2007, 01:42 PM
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There were times that I generate more wood chips that would fit in the dumpster. There were several stables that would pick up shavings from the jointer and planer. A word of precaution; the caretakers say the wood chips that have food names, like cherry, walnut, etc, can be toxic to hoofed animals. There may be others.

Before exposing animals or pets to that media, first check on the safety issue.
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post #5 of 16 Old 10-16-2007, 02:00 PM
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I post my sawdust for "free" on Craigslist. Somebody usually replies within a day or so to pick it up. Seems like a shame to waste it.

I do like your idea of the firestarter things...but then again, I don't have a fireplace

Hack (a.k.a. Jeff)
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post #6 of 16 Old 10-16-2007, 02:26 PM Thread Starter
 
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I'm a frequent "sit by the outdoor fire and stare" kind of guy. Usually while listening to a ballgame or the like.

I'm going to give it a go and see what happens.
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post #7 of 16 Old 10-16-2007, 02:38 PM
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I spread it out around shrubs, etc. as part of the ground cover...
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post #8 of 16 Old 10-16-2007, 06:08 PM
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What to do with sawdust.

My modest-sized backyard workshop is adjacent to a large deck (I am in north Florida), and I simply wheel the tools out onto the deck, hook up my budget-grade dust collector (this is a GMC unit, but Grizzly has a similar model) without a bag and horizontally blast the dust and chips out into my "natural" yard. I reposition the unit at times, so that it will aim in different directions during a duty cycle.

Howard Ferstler
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post #9 of 16 Old 10-17-2007, 10:45 PM
 
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Funny, I was just thinking about that...

Don't know if you get the Science Channel on cable, but there's this show called "How it's Made" that detailed how they make those firelogs...

We can't match that, but I learned a bit... I was thinking about mixing the sawdust with some liquid parrafin wax... plus a "binder" that'd hold it all together... maybe shredded newspaper? Just mix up a consistency of cookie dough, for lack of a better term. Throw some Citronella oil in there to scare off the bugz.

Build a few knock-down 4x4x6 molds with wing-nut disassembly to pack the stuff into, and line them with wax paper. Load it in, trowel it off, and let it dry out and cure... and I think we'd have some killer firepit fuel!

Last edited by Buffalo Bilious; 10-17-2007 at 10:52 PM.
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post #10 of 16 Old 10-17-2007, 11:06 PM Thread Starter
 
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I never thought about dealing with the bugz! Good idea! I'm going to do a bit of google tonight on the topic.
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post #11 of 16 Old 10-18-2007, 04:17 PM
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I once read that sawdust would deplete the soil of nitrogen, would clump up and shed water if used as mulch, and be harmful to animals.

We have a small path in the back yard that meanders through some trees.
This is where I spread my chips and sawdust. The plants along the path aren’t yellow, indicating a lack of nitrogen, and appear healthy. They aren’t thriving, but I think that is more because of the heavy shade than anything else. The sawdust decomposes rapidly and I haven’t yet had any problems disposing of it in this manner.

I have read, from more than one source, that walnut in particular was toxic to animals.
A plant I can replace, but I don’t think I would tempt fate with the livestock.
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post #12 of 16 Old 10-18-2007, 05:02 PM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Buffalo Bilious View Post
Funny, I was just thinking about that...

Don't know if you get the Science Channel on cable, but there's this show called "How it's Made" that detailed how they make those firelogs...

We can't match that, but I learned a bit... I was thinking about mixing the sawdust with some liquid parrafin wax... plus a "binder" that'd hold it all together... maybe shredded newspaper? Just mix up a consistency of cookie dough, for lack of a better term. Throw some Citronella oil in there to scare off the bugz.

Build a few knock-down 4x4x6 molds with wing-nut disassembly to pack the stuff into, and line them with wax paper. Load it in, trowel it off, and let it dry out and cure... and I think we'd have some killer firepit fuel!
I love watching that show but missed that one.
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post #13 of 16 Old 10-18-2007, 05:04 PM Thread Starter
 
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I was reading that some firelogs are made only by compressing the sawdust and chips. I haven't found how much pressure is needed though.
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post #14 of 16 Old 10-18-2007, 05:11 PM Thread Starter
 
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One thing we need to keep in mind is not to burn things like treated lumber, certain woods, etc. It's been mentioned in this thread but I thought I would pretend to be knowledgeable in something.
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post #15 of 16 Old 10-19-2007, 04:55 AM
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'Logs' made from wood sawdust and chips are sold at virtually every petrol station here in UK. Particularly popular at Christmas when sometimes added chemicals give different coloured flames. Believe they are made using a binding agent and hydraulic pressure.

I did see the item on 'how its made' a year or so back.
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post #16 of 16 Old 10-20-2007, 03:32 PM
 
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Just to throw a piece of wood on the fire, I will tell you what we do here in South Africa. We use it in the Chicken hut then when we change from there we put it onto the compost heap. Both of these have been mentioned, but I also noticed the other day in the supermarket that they are selling small packets of sawdust/chips for your hampster cages. So packing it into packets and selling to your local pet store might or might not be a way to get it out. Just have to know the toxicity levels. Just wanted to let you know anyways.

In fact I have to keep sawdust/chips around my entire workshop including underneath my table saw as my chickens lay their eggs in there and everywhere. You guessed it I also live on a farm.

Liz
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