When is a cutoff just trash?

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So I'm a real pack rat when it comes to cutoffs. Workshop is a mess; I can never seem to part with the smallest bit of wood thinking 'ooo that'll be useful' but it rarely if ever is. Do you guys have any kind of rule of thumb for what gets put in the cutoff bin and what goes into the trash?
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Heirarchy when culling. Top of list is most likely to survive the slaughter.
most valuable wood ("luckily" usually the smallest pieces) nicest figured wood wider and shorter pieces longer and narrower pieces
The last two might change position depending on what type of projects you do.
R
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I have a cutoff barrel. When it starts to overflow and blocks my access to my beer (I keep the beer on the shelf behind the barrel), I clean it out, starting with the smallest bits first. Sometimes this entails pulling lots of larger, longer scraps out to get to the bottom of the barrel where the tiny scraps sift to, but so far the process is working out OK.
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Never in the trash. Hardwoods (with no finish) are good for smoking or grilling food. They make good kindling for the wood stove. If you don't have one, chances are a neighbor does and will be grateful for the scraps.
I do keep a box of small stuff for the odd little piece you need once in a while. I don't let it get too big though.
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damian penney wrote:

I throw all my cutoffs into one of a couple large boxes I keep for that purpose. When the boxes get full (every few months or so)I go through and cull out most of the smaller pieces until I've reduce the two full boxes down to two half boxes.
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Think of the typical smallest project that you likely will make (I toss almost anything that is less than a foot long). Now ask yourself if that cut-off could be used to make a part of it. If so, keep it. If not, toss it. I also clean out my cut-off pile whenever it starts to consume too much shop space (ie. gets in my way). The larger or uncommon woods stay and everything else becomes kindling. Kindling gets stored in 4 large plastic garbage cans behind the shop for the wood stove season.. If the cans get full before wood stove time, then 50% of it either gets trashed or given to friends with fireplaces or wood stoves.
--
Charley


"damian penney" < snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com> wrote in message
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I agree with some of the other posts- rare (exotics, expensive) I keep small pieces for dowel pins, splines, drawer pulls, etc., these go in a box under my bench. Larger, more common woods I keep larger pieces in the rafters overhead and smaller pieces go in another box under the bench. If I'm not using the cut offs faster then they are accumulating then when the boxes begin to overflow I do an inventory/sorting. What I keep gets put back in the box, what doesn't make the cut (pun intended) goes out to be burned or put in the yardwaste recycling can for pickup (solid wood only, no sheet products). I've already got a bag of cherry limbs and apple limbs for BBQ smoking when the mood hits for some ribs, etc. Bottom line is I've got to have room to move around in the shop and mine is a small shop. If I can't move and find the tools that I need then I can't be as creative or productive when working on a project. The shop has to be a comfortable and enjoyable place to be for you, everbody has their own clutter tolerance level- for some it's spic and span, for others it's pig sty.
Dale

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Trash - < 2.5 inches (largest dimension)
Kindling - < 1/4" rips or < 8" rough-cut crosscuts (too short to (power) plane into something useful)
small misc .... some of which occasionally gets culled into the kindling pile. If it's small, say 2x6x3/4, but jointed and planed, I'll keep it for a test cut, (e.g., setting the depth of a dado).
Particularly thick wood (>5/4) I'll tend to hang onto for lathe work. It could become a knob.
-Steve
Speaking of scrap....
I've started cutting the joinery for my modest timber-framed barn and have have in my posession the mother of all cutoffs 7x7x13... it will likely be forced into duty holding precut parts off the ground until assembly time.

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wrote:

15" long by at least 1.25" goes into the "future cutting board pile" the more varied the species (color) the better. like to make them for Christmas gifts.
Smaller than that either become fireplace kindling or get chopped up and put in the smoker wood bucket.
Long sticks become clamping pads for panel glue ups
I save way too much
Frank
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wrote:

a use for. Most of mine get used as test pieces before making a cut in the 'good' stuff or I begin making small things with my grandson. With him, it's all about participation and his ideas and perfection is not required. Some wood is never scrap no matter how small like apple wood.
Pete
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Living in a 2-bedroom flat with only a leaky garage for extra storage means I have limits imposed how much I can keep. If I didn't have that problem I'd be terrible I think . That said I have more sticks for 'stirring paint' than I really need!!!
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Let's see a show of hands. Who all wants to laugh out loud at the paint store guy who tries to hand them the complementary stirring stick at the checout?
<condescending snicker>... my stirrinig sticks are made of QS white oak hurumpf!
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Stephen M wrote:

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What? like you don't have walls?
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Stephen M wrote:

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If you have a U-Haul "Book" box full of scrap hardwood of about 1 by (X wide) 6 or 8 inches long up to 10 to 12 inches long, without knots, or planner 'snip', and I do mean clear good quality hardwood --
go to EBay, Power Tools -->Saws, Blades & Accessories --> and sell the box as Scroll Saw -HardWood Grab Box. Write it up as minimum of 6 inch long to max of (whatever your box has) of various hardwoods. Try to get a good weight estimate for the before you try to sell so buyer can know what you will be charging for shipping. State clearly it is hardwood, and great for scroll saw work for desktop clocks, trivets, fretwork, scrolled wooden jewelry and broaches, plus many other uses.
You won't get a lot of money, but maybe the price for a can of finish.
Phil
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wrote:

This comes up every now and again, and there's always people saying how they toss anything less than a foot. I'd be happy to take that stuff off their hands. Look at what Rockler does with their cutoffs:
http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?Offerings_ID 3&TabSelecttails
They're getting $1/lb for the stuff.
At least throw the stuff in a separate box and try offering it for free on craigslist or something. Or offer it on the wreck.
-Leuf
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when i push a peice into the lumber rack and one falls off the back, that one go's into the furnace. ross
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Fri, Mar 9, 2007, 6:40am (EST-3) snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com (damianpenney) doth queryeth: So I'm a real pack rat when it comes to cutoffs. Workshop is a mess; I can never seem to part with the smallest bit of wood thinking 'ooo that'll be useful' but it rarely if ever is. Do you guys have any kind of rule of thumb for what gets put in the cutoff bin and what goes into the trash?\
No, you're not a cheap bastard, you're just frugel. Keep it all, until you run out of space to keep it, then get rid of just the smallest pieces. Repeat.
JOAT It was too early in the morning for it to be early in the morning. That was the only thing that he currently knew for sure. - Clodpool
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What is this trash thing?
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-Mike-
snipped-for-privacy@alltel.net
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