Definately Oldest Crawler On JDCrawlers

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CuttingEdge
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Definately Oldest Crawler On JDCrawlers

Post by CuttingEdge » Sun Oct 01, 2017 3:53 pm

I am teasing you guys, this is obviously not mine, but while it does not look like we can make it up to the Maine Logging Living History days at Lenard's Woods this year, last year we did.

They have one of (3) operating steam Lombard Log Hauler's and they realized that they should allow more than people to see it, they should be able to ride on it and operate it. Last year I was fortunately to have said I have driven the the crawler that all other crawlers copied. Even Benjamin Holt viewed this machine in operation and copied the patents and later lost in a Lombard vs Holt lawsuit over patent infringement rights. Later I was allowed to ride with my family sitting in the wood box...a memorable day for sure. (I am the one steering it, and no I did NOT happen to get a picture of Katie posing beside it :-) )

If anyone can get to Bradley, Maine next weekend (October 7th) you'll see lots of logging equipment, sawmills, and how they turned wood into boards 100 years ago. You will also see this Lombard Steam Log Hauler, and I did not exclusive rights to drive it that day, you might have the chance as well.

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I have no intention of traveling to my grave in a well manicured body; instead I am going to slide into heaven with a big power turn, totally wore out with busted knuckles, jump off my dozer loudly yelling, Woo Hoo, another Shepard has just arrived!

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Re: Definately Oldest Crawler On JDCrawlers

Post by B Town » Sun Oct 01, 2017 4:02 pm

What an amazing machine!! Love the pics.

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Re: Definately Oldest Crawler On JDCrawlers

Post by Lavoy » Mon Oct 02, 2017 8:52 am

I think I have seen pics of them pulling loads of logs out of the forest in the winter.
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Re: Definately Oldest Crawler On JDCrawlers

Post by shinnery » Mon Oct 02, 2017 7:43 pm

Only 2200 miles away. May not make it. By the way Rand McNally does not bother to show it in their map books. LOL Have to google to find it.
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Re: Definately Oldest Crawler On JDCrawlers

Post by CuttingEdge » Tue Oct 03, 2017 5:27 am

It is in Bradley, Maine...between Brewer and Old Town, which is on the other side of the river from Bangor.

A lot of my old church volunteers at the event, and I volunteered as well, but not this year. My family had a Potash Factory back in the early 1800's and of course were Colliers. That is one thing they lack, so I volunteered to do something in that regard. Charcoal Production was huge back then and to have a living history museum without it seems wrong.

I have a lot of forest land, but it will surprise a lot of people to know that I burn a lot of coal. It occurred to me that maybe I should make homemade coal: charcoal. So yesterday I took my dozer and made a charcoal pit. It is only 4 cords in size, but might be a good test to try. That should net me the equivalent of 3 tons of anthracite coal based on a 50% conversion ratio, and charcoal having 13,000 btu's per pound, and anthracite coal having $15,000 btu's per pound. I also have 5 cord of firewood in the wood shed too...just in case.

Right now in Maine, the forestry industry is dead and some species of wood I cannot even get rid of, like hemlock. 28% of my wood lot is hemlock and I cannot even sell it, so I am trying new ways to convert it into something usable. I got about 10 cords of waste wood kicking around right now, so I am going to see if I can make charcoal out of that and see how it comes out.

Maybe what is old is new again?
I have no intention of traveling to my grave in a well manicured body; instead I am going to slide into heaven with a big power turn, totally wore out with busted knuckles, jump off my dozer loudly yelling, Woo Hoo, another Shepard has just arrived!

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Re: Definately Oldest Crawler On JDCrawlers

Post by Lavoy » Tue Oct 03, 2017 8:06 am

Okay, probably a dumb question, but no logging of any sort where I grew up because there are no trees. What is the benefit of making charcoal as opposed to just burning the wood itself? Less waste or ash?
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Re: Definately Oldest Crawler On JDCrawlers

Post by Stan Disbrow » Tue Oct 03, 2017 8:15 am

Hi,

The process removes the water and lighter things which combust, so that removes what leads to creosote in the chimney. It also makes the heavier combustible parts more dense, and that makes for a longer burn time between stove loadings.

I used to do this with the softwoods when I lived in NY. I burned the hardwoods directly during the day and loaded the stove with charcoal before going to bed - so I didn't have to get up in the middle of the night to reload. It also kept the softwood fuel from gunking up the chimney while still making use of it. ;)

Oh, and what a cool machine! :)

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Re: Definately Oldest Crawler On JDCrawlers

Post by CuttingEdge » Wed Oct 04, 2017 4:19 am

Lavoy wrote:
Tue Oct 03, 2017 8:06 am
Okay, probably a dumb question, but no logging of any sort where I grew up because there are no trees. What is the benefit of making charcoal as opposed to just burning the wood itself? Less waste or ash?
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This is not a dumb question at all, in fact it is a very important, million dollar question: is all the work worth it? To me, the real question is,can I figure out a way to do this mechanically with my bulldozer and log loader and take out the hard work? If I can, I can take useless wood (hemlock pulp) and convert it into something I can sell.

My Great-Grandfather used to have a Potash Factory during great Potash Fever Days, and I even looked into that. Hey my fields always need fertilizer, but I realized just (1) 15 acre field with a recommendation of 80/60/210 212 on the NPK would need 160 cords of wood, burnt to ash and then spread. That is a lot of wood for something that would last just a few years. It would be less expensive to buy fertilizer then log that much wood!

But if I could convert softwood to charcoal I could sell it to the organic farmers as biochar, or use it in my own wood stove. I have hundreds of acres of woods, but actually prefer to burn anthracite coal, I am just so frugal that I hate buying it. Anthracite coal has 15,000 btu's per pound, but charcoal has 13,000 btu's, so its pretty comparable. And right now hardwood is selling at the paper mills, so it is silly to burn hardwood for heat, when I can sell that for good money and instead burn softwood that has no market at all. But in life a person does not get something for nothing, I have to convert it, and doing that might be a challenge.
I have no intention of traveling to my grave in a well manicured body; instead I am going to slide into heaven with a big power turn, totally wore out with busted knuckles, jump off my dozer loudly yelling, Woo Hoo, another Shepard has just arrived!

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Re: Definately Oldest Crawler On JDCrawlers

Post by Lavoy » Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:16 am

Okay, but still confused, what is wrong with burning softwood for heat? We used to burn Cottonwood slabs in the shop for heat. Way less BTU's per pound, but for free wood, just throw more in.
If wood puts out a certain amount of BTU's per pound, some of those BTU's have to be lost in the charcoal conversion process. For example, if a pile of wood has 1,000,000 BTU of potential, does that same pile of wood converted to charcoal not have much less? If it is a storage and hauling issue, I get that. Is it also an issue of converting it into a more saleable product? If so, is the value increased enough to over come the "cost" of converting it?
Sorry for all the questions, but like I say, really no wood here, so not much info or history.
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Re: Definately Oldest Crawler On JDCrawlers

Post by CuttingEdge » Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:25 pm

No problem this is how we all learn...

Softwood and Hardwood is a type of wood, not necessarily an indicator of how truly hard the wood is. For instance Cottonwood is a hardwood, but is probably less dense then hemlock which is considered a softwood. Basswood is similiar, it is a hardwood, but super soft in nature, much less so then hemlock too.

Softwood...typically a needle type of tree with lots of resin, is not good to burn because of all that nasty sap. It produces a lot of creosote and can be dangerous if it builds up. Yes it can burn...and just keep tossing more in the stove, but not really the best idea, especially in modern emissions complaint stoves. (gasifier type wood stoves)

But charcoal is unique in that it burns hotter after it has charred. That is because when you burn firewood directly, there is still some moisture in the wood, and part of the energy (btu's) of a fire is used drying that moisture off. The making of charcoal, charring the wood essentially, drives off that moisture and just leaves the fuel. That makes for a much hotter fire then the wood could ever produce if it burned prior to being formed into charcoal. In the old days this is why they made charcoal to use in iron blast furnaces, it could reach temperatures enough to melt iron. A single blast furnace though could consume 1 acre (30 cords of wood) per DAY!

This is a nice video of how the old duffers made charcoal, and I would do it this way if I had an excavator.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ya7m85vhpts
I have no intention of traveling to my grave in a well manicured body; instead I am going to slide into heaven with a big power turn, totally wore out with busted knuckles, jump off my dozer loudly yelling, Woo Hoo, another Shepard has just arrived!

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Re: Definately Oldest Crawler On JDCrawlers

Post by hydrogeo » Fri Oct 06, 2017 10:45 am

I had a chance to check out the Lombard at the logging museum up in Patton over the summer. The undercarriage arrangement including the chain bottom rollers on those things is very cool. It's a big machine too.

I tried mixing in a little hemlock for sugaring a couple years ago. Won't do that again, stuff is worthless as firewood.

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Re: Definately Oldest Crawler On JDCrawlers

Post by notmeu » Fri Oct 06, 2017 5:52 pm

Hey cutting edge, is there any market for hemlock siding in your area? Around here, including myself, we use 1” thick ruff cut hemlock boards for siding. 3 of the sides are cut so they are straight and the last side is left with the hemlock outer edge of the tree including the bark. My barn, pavilion and wood shed all have this type of siding. There is a few houses in the area that did the same thing for siding. And around here the hemlock is dying off pretty fast. As you probably know it’s a great wood for rot resistance and also bugs and bees don’t seem to bother with the dried wood. But some bug or disease likes the standing stuff. I would show you some pictures but I haven’t figured out how to post them since the whole photobucket issue. I thought that it may help you with getting some income out of these softwood trees.
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Re: Definately Oldest Crawler On JDCrawlers

Post by CuttingEdge » Sun Oct 08, 2017 2:10 pm

We have the same stuff here, but it is not made of Eastern Hemlock but rather White Pine. It is a good use for it though. back when I was a kid, the old duffers scoffed at Spruce and preferred Eastern Hemlock, but the new carpenters today do not like lifting heavy wood and thus prefer Spruce/Fir and Pine...a bunch of Sally's if you ask me.

I have no issues with the wood and rather like Eastern Hemlock and use it for everything. I built a 30 x 48 barn a few years ago using it and because of the size of the trees ended up cutting 15 to build the barn! I sell my higher paying woods like Spruce to buy my spikes, roofing and concrete, and then frame and board with Eastern Hemlock.

The Hemlock Blight and Emerald Ash Borer have not hit here yet so our trees are still alive, but it is coming. Both are in new Hampshire, but spreading slowly. All my foresters said the same thing: cut every Ash you see, and I would with Eastern Hemlock if I could get rid of it.

I did manage to burn a 2 cord of wood this afternoon and got it cooking underground. It will be a few days before I know how that turned out, but there is no question I produced some charcoal, its just a matter of how much and if it is worth it to do. So far the amount of work required is minor, so it really depends on how much is produced.
I have no intention of traveling to my grave in a well manicured body; instead I am going to slide into heaven with a big power turn, totally wore out with busted knuckles, jump off my dozer loudly yelling, Woo Hoo, another Shepard has just arrived!

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Re: Definately Oldest Crawler On JDCrawlers

Post by CuttingEdge » Thu Oct 12, 2017 4:06 am

Drat, my idea worked too well....

I heard from others that turning big sized wood into charcoal was hard because it would not char all the way through. BUT they burned the wood, then put the fire out with water. In that way, they took the heat away from the fire. I thought I would keep the heat in the fire by just smothering out the oxygen with dirt. That worked, but 4 days later it was still hot deep underground. This caused the wood to turn to ash and not just char. So in the end I did not end up with much charcoal.

I'll have to rethink my plan on this.
I have no intention of traveling to my grave in a well manicured body; instead I am going to slide into heaven with a big power turn, totally wore out with busted knuckles, jump off my dozer loudly yelling, Woo Hoo, another Shepard has just arrived!

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Re: Definately Oldest Crawler On JDCrawlers

Post by Stan Disbrow » Thu Oct 12, 2017 6:38 am

Hi,

I think you need to build what is called a retort kiln. Way back when, while working in Japan, these were everywhere outside the usual cities where tourists tend to hang out. Being as I was working, not touring, I got to see more than tourists usually do. ;) Anyway, there were these things all over the place which looked like large statues of turtles. They made a lot of charcoal.

I used to make mine in those heavy 55 gallon paint drums from the highway department. Easy to get and lasted quite a while, but not much production for each run. But, I was after the creosote to then use in a still to fraction off the methanol. The charcoal was just a useful byproduct.

Stan
There's No Such Thing As A Cheap Crawler!

Have: '58 JD 420c 5-roller w/62 inside manual blade
Have: '78 JD350C w/6310 outside manual blade
Useta Have: '68 JD350, '51 Terratrac GT-25
Also Have: 1950 M, 2005 x495, 2008 5103 (now known as 5045D)

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