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I have a 5' tall truck section of an apple tree. I was thinking about painting the ends and letting it sit for a year or so before I take to cutting it down to workable size. Is there a better method for air drying this lumber?

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Mill the lumber now and dry that, letting a log sit for a year is not going to ''dry it'' or do anything good for it (unless you are looking for spalt)...Letting logs lay just promotes rot and gives the bugs a chance to eat it, rot and bugs really like apple wood. If I let an apple log lay here for just a few months there would be nothing left worth milling. If I milled one today the lumber (assuming 1'' thick) would be air dried and ready to use by September.



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What Daren Said.

Also, Apple wood is notorious for cracking. If you leave it in log form very long, it will likely split beyond usefulness.
 

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Okay so I know what I'm doing this weekend. Thanks fellas

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Thanks for the advice guys. I have a chance to get a cherry trunk with a crotch that is about 4-5 feet long and about 2 feet thick. All I have is a cheap Lumber Maker and a small 14" chainsaw to get the wood into a manageable size. I'm planning on quarter saw into several pieces and then air drying for a year or so. The humidity in Seattle is about 70-80% most of the time. I'm hoping for a slab or 2 for a coffee table, the rest for a learning pile. I'm a totally new wood worker just getting started. The nice part of this wood is it's priced right for anyone.
 

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Thanks for the advice guys. I have a chance to get a cherry trunk with a crotch that is about 4-5 feet long and about 2 feet thick. All I have is a cheap Lumber Maker and a small 14" chainsaw to get the wood into a manageable size. I'm planning on quarter saw into several pieces and then air drying for a year or so. The humidity in Seattle is about 70-80% most of the time. I'm hoping for a slab or 2 for a coffee table, the rest for a learning pile. I'm a totally new wood worker just getting started. The nice part of this wood is it's priced right for anyone.
70% RH at 70 degrees equals a 13.1% EMC. 40% RH (inside your home) at 70 degrees equals a 7.7% EMC. That's way too big a change in MC. That Apple wood will be doing the watusi.

Air dry it to 20% MC or less and then place the wood somewhere with a lower RH and higher temperature if possible. An attic space is a good location or even inside your home or any other air conditioned space. Let it dry to below 10% MC and you can then use it without too much concern for excessive movement.
 

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I have the cherry trunk home now in 2 large pieces. I split it at the crotch with 1 14 inch cut and a pry bar that split the rot. It is still very heavy on the toes even through good work boots and I'll be limping for a few days. It looks like some nice grin in the pieces and a couple of burls. I'll start laying out the cuts this afternoon and try to just get the worst of the garbage out the way. It took 3 men to load it by hand and some block and tackle to unload. Like I said the price is right, about 10 man hours only.
 
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