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Oh My word! 190 years old! :eek: That's awesome! Yes you need to save some of that for furniture.
 

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That is one big Oak. I have a portable saw mill and I'm sorry to say, it's really hard to sell big slabs like that. It takes just the one person that will pay big bucks. I know a guy in NC that specializes in live edge slabs. He has many that big and bigger, and they have multi thousand dollar price tags. But, many have sat in his shop for years. So, when one finally sells, he gets big bucks for it, but he doesn't sell many. Just like Black Walnut, every one thinks they can put their kids through Med School with a couple nice BW saw logs. The raw timber isn't worth that much, there are many steps in processing the wood, each step, the price jumps, to the finished product being the most valuable. I have some beautiful, heavily figured BW that has been air drying for about 5 years. No offers at $100 per slab. I use one for a target for my throwing axes. After all that negative advice, if you find the one person, it has potential. The biggest log I could mill was 52", but I sold that bar, now the biggest I can do is 45". Here's a couple pics of possible projects, Joe.


Live edge work bench from Fir.


Live edge, bark on, mantle piece, Red Oak.




Dawn Redwood mantle and shelves.


37" Whit Pine milled off my farm in WV, then made into a fold up table in the bunk house.
 

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Discussion Starter · #43 ·
That is one big Oak. I have a portable saw mill and I'm sorry to say, it's really hard to sell big slabs like that. It takes just the one person that will pay big bucks. I know a guy in NC that specializes in live edge slabs. He has many that big and bigger, and they have multi thousand dollar price tags. But, many have sat in his shop for years. So, when one finally sells, he gets big bucks for it, but he doesn't sell many. Just like Black Walnut, every one thinks they can put their kids through Med School with a couple nice BW saw logs. The raw timber isn't worth that much, there are many steps in processing the wood, each step, the price jumps, to the finished product being the most valuable. I have some beautiful, heavily figured BW that has been air drying for about 5 years. No offers at $100 per slab. I use one for a target for my throwing axes. After all that negative advice, if you find the one person, it has potential. The biggest log I could mill was 52", but I sold that bar, now the biggest I can do is 45". Here's a couple pics of possible projects, Joe.


Live edge work bench from Fir.


Live edge, bark on, mantle piece, Red Oak.




Dawn Redwood mantle and shelves.


37" Whit Pine milled off my farm in WV, then made into a fold up table in the bunk house.
Wow,
That is some very nice craftsmanship.
And good advice, thank u.
Still up in air as to how I will move forward...
🤷‍♂️
 

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On a log that big I would be real tempted to cut a 6” “Cookie” off the end and finish it. It “Will” crack, all Oak checks as it dries. Then mark on the rings points of historic and technological significance. Maybe find two old cast lead soldiers for the Civil War. It will be big and heavy. It would be a good project for an Eagle Scout, maybe donate the finish project to a local museum.

If you decide to try and make a big heirloom table out of it, I would do this. If the slab is 2” thick, on the bottom, clamp a 2X4 and use it as a fence, or guide, to run a circular saw full lenth of the table, starting and stopping 2-3 inches in from the end, so the groove are not visible. If the table is 2”, cut the groove 3/4 to an inch deep. Move the 2X4 fence over an inch and a half and cut another groove, continue all the way across. This will relieve stress in the wood caused by the change of humidity during the year. I was at a wood show and there was an Amish wood worker selling custom width hard wood flooring. Every thing over two inches had groves to keep the flooring from cuppin.

My mill is not big enough to cut a full slab off. So, I would mill a few slabs off the top. Then snap a chalk line down the center. Making sure the line was oriented on the heart, not necessarily true half way point. Most of the checking and warping is in the heart. Then I would cut the log in half, and mill the two sides. Then I would join the two sides back together. I have a custom cabinet maker friend and he has a 48” planer and double belt sander, that can finish the whole thing. But, you would need a bunch of guys or a fork lift to move it. My 7 foot buy 20” Oak shelves weigh over 100 pounds. Many commercial mills will plane big slabs for a fair price. Or google “router sled”. It’s an easy and cheap way to build a jig so you can run a router back and fourth and level the slab then finish up with an orbital sander.

You should try CL and FB, it’s free, and you just might find that one person.
 

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It’s too bad that Oak has never really caught on as tone wood. I was just wondering how many back and side sets that tree would yield. Only a few Luthiers use it for guitar building, even though it makes a great acoustic guitar when paired with either a Sitka or Adirondack spruce top.
 
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