Cutting Pulpwood, is it worth it?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by PhilJohnson, Nov 8, 2010.

  1. PhilJohnson

    PhilJohnson Cactus Farmer/Cat Rancher

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    Anyone know what pulp wood is going for these days?
     
  2. TnAndy

    TnAndy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I'm sure it varies all over the country. Last I heard here, it was about $25/ton. Call whoever is the buyer in your area and ask.
     

  3. Sawmill Jim

    Sawmill Jim Well-Known Member

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    I had a TJ 225D and a Barko 160 loader and if it was free i still couldn't make money :help:
     
  4. Old Vet

    Old Vet Well-Known Member

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    Around here you can get $30 per ton but you must haul it 100 miles to the Kimberley Clark paper mill.
     
  5. PhilJohnson

    PhilJohnson Cactus Farmer/Cat Rancher

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    There is a mill in Wisconsin Rapids that is about 45 miles away from my place so it wouldn't be super far to go. At 30 per ton I think I would need to haul at least three tons to make it worth while.
     
  6. PhilJohnson

    PhilJohnson Cactus Farmer/Cat Rancher

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    Ouch! I don't think I would mess with it if is less than 30 bucks a ton. I guess I'll have to call up the mill tomorrow and find out for sure.
     
  7. texican

    texican Well-Known Member

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    If your labor was free, your fuel and wear/tear on truck and trailer were free, and your time were free... AND, you needed to thin out a stand of dense pines, maybe.

    It would make sense if you needed lots of backbreaking labor, and needed the pines thinned.

    Monetarily, it's a non starter.

    Before you haul any, make double dog sure you get all their spec's. Most want ~16' minimum, and the minimum size of the top has to be so big. No limbs, or excessive needles, etc. Be a bummer to get a trailer loaded, and hauled, and have em turn you away. Which they can do at a moment's notice, if your load ain't kosher, or they're not needing any more wood for a while.

    good luck...
     
  8. TnAndy

    TnAndy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Most loggers here don't cut pulp alone.....it's simply a by product of buying a tract with saw timber. I have a place 2 miles down the road from me that will buy anything down to 4" on the tip that you can drag in there....they either saw it into pallet lumber or chip for paper chips or boiler fuel.
     
  9. TnAndy

    TnAndy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    What will you be using to skid and load with ?
     
  10. PhilJohnson

    PhilJohnson Cactus Farmer/Cat Rancher

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    Depends on the location. Last year I helped a friend log of some of his woods. We took in about 4 cords to a local sawmill about 3 miles away. We used his parent's craptastic Leyland tractor and loader. It had no working power steering so it wasn't easy loading the logs. I hauled them in on an old hay wagon running gear pulled by my old 77 F100.

    I have a small Case VAC that has no loader that I use sometimes to skid out logs. Using ramps or handy hills I've rolled up logs up to 10 feet long with a diameter of two feet by myself. It isn't very easy, pretty exhausting really. I plan on using a come-along and ramps this time. The 2 ton truck I have now is just a tad taller than the pickups and hay wagon combo I used before :grin:
     
  11. PhilJohnson

    PhilJohnson Cactus Farmer/Cat Rancher

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    My parents have a very thick grove of small diameter pine they want cleared out. Most of the trees are under a foot diameter. I don't think a saw mill would want to mess with them so I figured instead I could make money selling them as pulp. I cleared out a huge mess of small pines a few years ago which I used for firewood.

    I am definately going to check into their requirements first. I know first hand about not getting paid :( I got screwed over earlier this year by a small saw mill operator (Amish). Guy told me he needed a couple of cords so I went out and cut them and delivered the load. I got a whole 40 bucks out of the deal. He promised to pay me more later. Never seen any more money than the lousy 40 bucks that I practically had to twist his arm to get.
     
  12. Sawmill Jim

    Sawmill Jim Well-Known Member

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    If you were closer i got a set of drop bunks going in scrap iron one these days .:cowboy: And a hand set sawmill too :eek:
     
  13. clovis

    clovis Well-Known Member

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    Phil-

    I would think that selling your parents wood as firewood would net you more money than selling it as pulp.

    There is no other market for the wood other than pulp??????

    I'd be worried about liability while hauling those logs. What is your insurance going to say if you have a wreck, and they find out you were hauling for commercial sale???
     
  14. PhilJohnson

    PhilJohnson Cactus Farmer/Cat Rancher

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    Green pine doesn't go for much as fire wood. If the trees were bigger I'd take them into one of the dozen of small mills that are around the area and get a much better price selling it for lumber.

    As far as hauling them, I go slow and take the back roads. When I used my old Ford I don't think I broke 25 mph the whole way to the saw mill. The 2 ton truck is a bit bigger so I think I should be safe hauling at a faster rate of speed. The big truck doesn't go that fast anyway (about 45-50 wide open). I think with it loaded down with logs it would be lucky to break 40 mph. It is a risk for sure but the back roads around here are very lightly travelled.
     
  15. haypoint

    haypoint Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Up north, Potlatch takes pine, but only in 100 inch lengths, down to 4-5 inch tops. They can't handle any logs above 24 inches dia. I think they are paying $40 a cord. Aspen, poplar and smaller pine is around $30 a cord. Some places price by ton, some by cord.
    You juust can't just show up with some logs to sell, it is all forward contracted.
     
  16. Old Vet

    Old Vet Well-Known Member

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    The price I gave you was for Oak, I don't know about pine.That mill only buys Hardwoods to make Paper towels.
     
  17. fishhead

    fishhead Well-Known Member Supporter

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    What about using them for fence posts? Or cabin logs?

    There must be some higher priced market than pulp.

    Right now people are cutting boughs for making wreathes.
     
  18. PhilJohnson

    PhilJohnson Cactus Farmer/Cat Rancher

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    Hmmmm hadn't thought of boughs. I have heard of people selling them but I have no idea who buys them.
     
  19. michiganfarmer

    michiganfarmer Max Supporter

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    I buy oak pulp cords for firewood. I pay $75 per cord
     
  20. ArmyDoc

    ArmyDoc Well-Known Member

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    here are the average prices in the southeast: http://www.timbermart-south.com/prices.html If you want to know the prices in your area, talk to a forester or google pulp wood prices in your state.

    Around here, for pine, the average for pulp is ~$9/ton, Chip&saw is about double that, and saw lumber is about $28 a ton. Was looking earlier (first quarter) like we'd turned the corner and prices were rising, but now it looks like things are standing pat. Pulps slowly getting better because of the biofuel push... but I haven't seen $30 a ton prices in years.