Another question we ask is how can we make the most efficient use of the trees we take? For this, we begin in the sawmill. When we approach the sawing of a log, we try to organize the cuts in a way that makes use of the whole log, right down to the pith. As each board comes off the blade, we marvel at the stunning colors and pronounced grain of wet wood and the small knots that were formed when the tree was just a sapling.
The closer to the center of the tree the board came from, the more challenging the drying and subsequent working properties become. It's worth the extra care, however, for it is there that we find the most interesting wood. The roar of the mill, the pervasive smell of fresh damp wood and the seismic tremor of the blade plowing through wood produce sensations that are unique to the sawmill. We use sawmills that have the flexibility to saw a log into pieces that are dimensioned especially for the furniture we have in mind. This is known as green dimension sawing and, though it takes some organization on our part and good relations with the sawyer, it is efficient and eases drying of the special heartwood. Green dimensioning allows us to make parts with large cross-sections from single pieces of wood, not glued-up blanks.
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