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Thread: uses for spruces?

  1. #1

    Default uses for spruces?

    I'm laid up with the flu, a 6 week old baby boy and feet of snow. Suffice to say I'm watching a bit of TV I was watching the Ray Mears bushcraft episode where he's in Sweeden. He's making use out of pine in all kinds of ways. Pine knots for fires, pine tar for curing pine ski's etc, some pretty interesting stuff.

    My family-in-laws are lucky enough to own a 66acre private island off the coast of Nova Scotia. We have a 175 year old house on it, no power, no running water , NO CELL SIGNAL, its great.

    Its also covered extensively with spruce. There is a bit of maple, birch and pine here and there but mostly spruce.

    What are some cool uses for spruce? Come spring I'm going to take a swing at pulling some roots to make some baskets, or using the long slender ones for a teepee etc.

    Are there other neat tricks? Please share if you got em


  2. #2

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    Oh... firewood is the top of the list

  3. #3
    Super Moderator crashdive123's Avatar
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    Didn't Howard Hughes make a big airplane out of them?
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  4. #4

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    canoe paddle, browse bed although I prefer balsam boughs for that. take a bit of the gum and chew on it, with a little chewing it comes along well, I like to add a pinch of bees wax to it.

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    Steelnwool: I will be posting from time to time Rustic Furniture that is easy to make. Spruce makes for a super easy wood to work with, although a little weaker and lighter than the maples and birches, it does make for good, light and super easy to work with materials to make fully usable furniture. I posted a thread on how to make a bench already, the next will be how to make real beds that last a life time and easy to make. Spruce is very forgiving and can take minor mistakes well.

    If the woods you have on the island are salt water fed (even minimal content like 10% salt), keep ALL metals (except for grade 5 stainless steels, they are OK) away from construction and use the wedge and mortise/tenon techniques I teach in the builds. Brass nails and screws are ok if they are good quality, the cheap blister packed ones (if used on salt water woods), stay far far far away from as they will fail, usually in a bad way.

    There will be threads on chairs, rockers, beds, shelves, tables, bar and bar stool, breakfast table and stools. All simple to make, minimum of non powered tools and take anywhere from 1/2 hour to 2 hours to make for a NOVICE.

    Keep posted to my build threads and please feel free to ask questions, I am more than willing to help anyone with their projects.

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    Hope you feel better soon...

  7. #7

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    @OhioGrizzLapp - much appreciated. Its hard to say what feeds the trees. I'd wager a large chunk of it is salt water, and some is fresh too as there are springs on the island in places and the center of it is about 150 feet above sea level. The center-hill is where the hardwoods are, the softwoods are on most of the lower elevation. The house is about 45 feet above sea level.

    Here it is on google maps: http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UT...21157&t=h&z=16

  8. #8
    Senior Member ClayPick's Avatar
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    A private 66 acres ................ someone has some coin or you are blessed enough to have always had it in the family. Either way, like my son says, “That’s just a cornucopia of awesomeness.” Lots of the islands make great farms because there are few predators and no need for fences. It’s easy to get someone with a portable mill to saw you a bunch of lumber for a fee or a percentage. The scrawny stuff makes great fence posts that always seem to have a market. If the trees are sound you can lay some up for a log cabin ......... you can go on and on. There might not be any cell phones but that kind of solitude can get deafening at time. I’d go a little more than lucky and venture into extremely fortunate.

  9. #9
    Senior Member ClayPick's Avatar
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    I just seen your map, your not that far from the mainland. Still lucky though.

  10. #10

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    @claypick - yeah we can actually drive onto the island with cars. There is a 100foot man made causeway. Its been in the family for about 175 to 200 years, and has snaked its way to my father in law being the sole owner.

    “That’s just a cornucopia of awesomeness.” - Thats from the Cape Breton McDonalds commercial We've had offers from people to log it for us, but its still all my pa in laws decision, and he's often reluctant to let very little happen to the island.

    We did just get a 24hp deisel tractor, and let me tell you that will be making a lot of work go pretty smooth. I'd like to get a mill someday or even just a chainsaw attachment.

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    If the tractor has a PTO, there are mills that cost about $900 that can handle up to 12x12 x 18 foot and anything below and inbetween. Sappy woods though, make sure you get the constant Naptha blade cleaner.

    I posted today the bed projects.

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