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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Dropped a 100 yo red fir that was pulling up its roots last late fall. I buck the branches this morning and will be cutting a couple of log pieces for ends and then ripping a 4" thick plank, to a length of 6 to 8 feet from near the base that is about 2.5' in diameter. Log furniture and log benches make for some attractive, heavy, and solid platforms. And the price is right! :) Pictures coming...
 

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need to see some pictures
 

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That ought to be solid enough to mount a press on for sure. Keep us in the loop and pictures please, John.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Still some snow on the ground and a bit slippery and treacherous to walk on. In a few days it should all be clear and my buddy with the big husky chainsaw will rip the big trees base. My Stihl 290 is a bit small to power thru 8' of mostly green wood 2.5' thick.

I've been planning this work bench for a while, and wondering if I should set up for a Dillon progressive (6' vs 8'), in case I want to startup again with handgun reloading. Also whether to make the bench high for standing while I sharpen a chain or cleaning a rifle, or lower to sit while reloading. Hmmmmm? :hmmmm:

This is an end at length for sitting on a stool or for standing.

It is/was a big tree, I should just make both. :shot:

FirTree.jpg
 

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Make it about 43 inches from floor to top, use a bar stool. Best of both worlds.

On the Stihl saw. It really has nothing to do with the size of the saws your comparing. That 290 is no doubt the best cutting saw/size Stihl makes. It is in the chain. Normal chains are built to cut perpendicular to the grain. No matter the saw, cutting length wise with the grain is tough with normal chains. They make a chain called a "ripping chain" made for cutting length wise on logs following the grain. It will flat out smoke through it like a normal chain will when cutting perpendicular to the grain. If you do any amount of length wise rough sawing, it's the berries.

FWIW, if that log isn't dry, it is going to split and warp at the worst, or split and cup at the least after you saw it and it does dry. If you can wait a bit, debarking it laying it on blocks in the sun will definitely help minimize it.

God Bless
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Make it about 43 inches from floor to top, use a bar stool. Best of both worlds.

On the Stihl saw. It really has nothing to do with the size of the saws your comparing. That 290 is no doubt the best cutting saw/size Stihl makes. It is in the chain. Normal chains are built to cut perpendicular to the grain. No matter the saw, cutting length wise with the grain is tough with normal chains. They make a chain called a "ripping chain" made for cutting length wise on logs following the grain. It will flat out smoke through it like a normal chain will when cutting perpendicular to the grain. If you do any amount of length wise rough sawing, it's the berries.

God Bless
I have a 20" bar with full comp chains and an 18" bar with skip tooth chains. My buddy/mentor has all. He suggested the ripping of the bench planks so I'm postive he will have any/all that is needed to get thru the tree's base. I have only once ripped a log lengthwise, so my experience is limited. I'll get up to speed on smaller projects but this one I want an experts touch. Less smoothing of the planks surface and maybe a bench that is level with out a bunch of shim wedges. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Are you going to air dry the lumber before building anything with it? Maybe you have access to a dry kiln. I would be wary of building something nice with green lumber and bringing it into a heated living space.
It's going to be logs, bark and all and will be in the garage. I will likely oil/varnish the top surface after a few month, after any sweating stops.
 

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Let it air dry for a year then sent that big ol log to someone who can make stocks for your rifles...



Doc
 

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Doc Holliday: do not think that fir would make a good rifle stock. The wood is too soft.

As for air drying, the rule of thumb is 1 year per 1 inch of thickness. And then it must covered/protected from the elements and weighed down so the wood does not warp, twist, cup, split, etc., while drying. The wood also must have 'stickers" placed between each board so the air can circulate on both sides and edges to promote uniform drying. As Travlin posted, seal the ends need, otherwise, it will dry too quickly from the ends and cause splits. Air drying is a slow process and after brought inside, it needs another 10-15 days plus -- depending upon thickness, etc., to acclimatize.

I would make the bench bigger than what you think would suffice. You never know what future needs and desires will lead to. Nothing worse than trying to work on a crowded bench because it is too short and knowing that you had the room and materials to initially make it longer. Make it no wider than your "reach" , minus a few inches.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I moved that one cut piece into the garage this morning. Good god, that bugger is heavy. I'm glad trees are round and can be rolled. Measures at 40 inches and stands flat and steady. So another cut and a couple of rip cuts for a plank and I'll be setting up for reloading. Bear season starts in 2 days. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I would make the bench bigger than what you think would suffice. You never know what future needs and desires will lead to. Nothing worse than trying to work on a crowded bench because it is too short and knowing that you had the room and materials to initially make it longer. Make it no wider than your "reach" , minus a few inches.
Nice thing about where I'm living, endless supply of trees for making tables and benches. I'm thinking this one for reloading and another later for general purposes.
 

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Bud, it is your choice, so do not misunderstand me when I say this. You have been warned and warned about what is going to happen to your bench if you don't air dry it. You seem like you aren't paying attention to it. It isn't an opinion. If that is acceptable to you then sobeit. But, if you want to be truly satisfied and not be replacing it next year, you had better heed this advice. If re-doing it later is fine than I'm out of line. Watch what happens if you bolt your press to that green log. If it doesn't bust as it dries, it is going to harden around the bolts requiring you to re-locate it in time because it will get loose. I'm betting on it busting as it dries.

I ask you to consider that 7 framing studs will make you a bench 46 5/16 inches long, 35 inches deep, be screwed to the wall. Use 5 studs cut in half for the surface planking, one stud for the legs, and one stud for the framing. $28 if you have to buy the screws and two lag bolts. It will take you about 30 minutes to build. And it will do a great job. Much better than trying to use a busted, warped, splitting piece of drying wood. This is all I'm going to say about it other than you got a great idea to make a great bench. Do it right and you'll only do it once. Use that log wet and you wish you hadn't. Good luck in whatever you decide.

God Bless
 

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Weld up a heavy 4 inch channel steel frame and use many bolts to anchor it to that frame.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
FWIW, if that log isn't dry, it is going to split and warp at the worst, or split and cup at the least after you saw it and it does dry. If you can wait a bit, debarking it laying it on blocks in the sun will definitely help minimize it.

God Bless
I guess I'll find out. I've various log stumps, that I use to split firewood on, that are several years old from neighbors clearing and thinning that were left out in the open and are solid without any cracking, splitting or warping. Tamarack and Fir are like this. Jack Pine does crack readily. The plank is going to sit out for a few days, planed if needed, belt sanded, then brought in and treated. I've an expert here and this is the recommendation, and that the bench will be good for 20+ years. If it only lasts 5 years, fine, there is lots and lots of wood around here. In fact 2 million acres worth starting 1/8 mile down the road. :)

Lolo National Forest - Home

BTW, this bench is costing me a box of bullets, and whatever a couple of 5" lag bolts costs.
 

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MontanaMarlin336,

Go for it. Nothing like a good bench to help the process.

Once it is finished don't punch the bench top full of hole, google Under Bench Receiver System on the net to see how to avoid the messed up top issue.

Crusty Deary Ol'Coot
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 · (Edited)
It's evolving as the work progresses. There will be two benches total. The 2nd for general purposes...

More planing, grinding, sanding, several coats of polyurethane, then assembly. :)


ReloadingPressBench3.jpg ReloadingPressBench5.jpg ReloadingPressBench11.jpg ReloadingPressBench18.jpg ReloadingPressBench20.jpg
 
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