Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: central Illinois
Ditto what the others said about $ to the owner of the tree before you even see the inside of the log...You never know what you have until you open them up, you may be buying ''a few hundred bucks'' worth of firewood that you had to work your butt off to harvest. (while saving the homeowner several hundred in tree service expense) After you mill the log (and all that entails felling/hauling/milling/drying)... and if you get something spectacular and come out well on the deal and feel obligated to flip them a couple bucks, maybe, for your conscience sake...NEVER on a standing tree, trust me 9 out of 10 times that will come back to bite you (right in the wallet).
As far as milling...big trees give you the opportunity for big slabs, why waste that ? A guy can get all the 7'' wide lumber he wants from puny trees. Wide lumber will bring a big premium if you decide to sell some. Have the sawyer mill as wide as he possibly can. The lumber can always be ripped narrower at a later time if desired. I am biased, I like wide lumber, so do my customers. I don't like to have to joint and glue 3-4 boards together to make something I could with 1 board, plus I just like the look of wide lumber in a piece it's more uniform and attractive to me (people may chime in and say glue ups are more stable with expansion/contraction...BS, there I said it)
As far as not having the tools to work with a really wide slab to make a table top or something...I can't plane/thickness sand anything over 25'' wide, neither can 80%+ of my customers. You have a sawmill close, I bet you have some small cabinet shops close too...For a couple bucks (literally, just had 8 wide slabs thickness sanded at a local Amish shop for a $20 bill I handed the guy as I slipped them in the side door) let someone else do that part. No worries there.
Overall and to sum up looking at that tree again, you may or may not get many wide slabs anyway. The one side, or face, has a pretty deep chasm from what I said in that thread was probably a healed over lightning strike (and who know the butt log may be as hollow as a sewer pipe, another reason not to offer the owner $) The sawyer should know how to deal with what he sees once he gets it on the sawmill.
Good luck and keep us posted.
EDIT: I see you posted while I was posting/making a sandwich/shoving said sandwich in my face...You are thinking right on the $, only if you do well, then share fairly. I thought you were going to ''invest'' in a standing tree, risky business...
Last edited by Daren; 07-10-2011 at 01:52 PM.