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  • Turn £17* of log timber into £50 to £375** of sawn timber

    You would probably be surprised if you heard that someone had sold something for £17 to £22 if it is worth £50-£60. You would no doubt question their sanity if it turned out to be worth £300-£375. And yet it is exactly what can happen when someone logs up a piece of timber that is of milling quality! To rub salt into the wound they may have even spent over £8,000 on a firewood processor to turn it into logs when a £3,150 Riko Timbery M100 sawmill would enable them to mill it.

     

    To put it into perspective a piece of timber the size shown if the picture below could be worth as little as £17 as softwood logs or as much as £375 as air dried Oak boards.

     

    RZ110 on AGT 850. 2 low res.jpg

     

    A 36cm diameter X 3m felled piece of timber equates to approximately 0.31 cubic meters of timber. If its softwood then sold as logs is worth around £17-£22 (£55-£70M3), if it’s hardwood then sold as logs its worth around £25-£31 (£80-£100M3). However, the same piece of timber can be sawn into four 10cm X10cm X 3m posts & two 25mm X 100mm X 3m boards and as softwood could be worth £50-£60 (£266- £320M3) or as hardwood the value could be £100-120 (£533 -£640M3). If you are prepared to spend the extra time cutting it into Waney-Edge cladding boards, then the total value for Cedar is around £110-£130. If its Oak and you cut it into 25mm X 125mm X 3m boards and air dried, it could be worth £300-£375 (£1,600-£2,000 M3).

     

    A PTO driven firewood processor capable of handling 36cm diameter timber will cost you around £8,000 + vat to earn £55-£100 per M3 of logs. A petrol engine Riko M100 saw mill will cost you £3,150 + vat and could potentially earn you up £2,000 M3.

    (NB. All prices quoted were sourced on the internet via a UK search and are therefore not binding). For more information, call 01420 487300, or visit www.riko-uk.com

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    That’s great if you can find someone who wants to buy the odd bit of sawn timber. When ever I have tried to sell timber I have milled nobody wants it. The would rather buy kiln dried timber from a bigger supplier IMG_1268.jpganybody interested in 4, 8 x 2 x 2inch thick yew boards, before I log it?

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    Will you need to work on your marketing strategy.

     

    'Odd bit of sawn timber' - £2.83

     

    'Uniquely charactered rustic bench top hand made from English Yew - £350

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    Will you need to work on your marketing strategy.
     
    'Odd bit of sawn timber' - £2.83
     
    'Uniquely charactered rustic bench top hand made from English Yew - £350
    True but that customers comes along every leap year!

    If you have a market for it or can use it yourself then great. If not it's a hard sell.

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    Selling timber is hard.  At least, like selling most things it takes time, marketing and space.  And if you have a small stock of timber to sell you will invariably find the customer wants something a bit thicker/wider/longer/cleaner/more characterful/drier/wetter than what you have.  

     

    Firewood of course also takes time and space to sell, and also needs marketing at first, but at least you know you will find customers so long as you have dry logs.  They won't complain that a log is not quite straight, or is too knotty.

     

    My specialism is milling, drying and then selling timber and I may even stop selling firewood altogether, but it has taken me eight hard years of accumulating debts to make it work.  

     

    I purchase other people's air dried stock by the way occasionally, but at wholesale prices of course.  So if you are sitting on a pile of decent wood that you cannot find customers for (and if you are near South East Wales) I might give you a lump sum price for a large amount.

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    It's a bit of a misleading way to describe sawn timber. The kind of oak that would sell for £1600-2000 a cubic metre (and 25mm would rarely if ever make that price) would cost upwards of £300-350 (and as much as £500) a cubic metre to buy in as opposed to £80-100. 

     

    As has been said, selling timber is difficult. In order to be successful at it, you need to be able to hold tens of thousands of pounds of stock, have ample space and lots of complementary machinery to assist with the job. It's rewarding and can be a means of earning a living, but no one is going to be able to make a living from a small manual mill, and equally the type of timber you put through a firewood processor is not the same timber you put through a mill. 

     

    I'm sure it's a fine little mill, but I just feel it's the wrong way to advertise it.

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    I have quite a large stock of timber for my own use and maybe a bit of a retirement fund.

    I sell a fair bit without trying. It's a good bonus income but i don't try to make a living from it.

     

    Can't cut oak quick enough mind. But I dont seem to get offered that much oak.

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    We will take any stems and mill them onsite or in our own yard up to 1.5 in diameter in Cheshire/Derby and surrounding areas

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