I have a large sumac tree that blew down in a wind storm. Is this wood of any value for woodworking or should I make it into firewood, and how should I handle it? I have a sawmill so I could process it myself.
John Swanson: Sumac is a good wood for turning, but has a tendency to split and check during drying. The limb wood has lots of reaction wood (top under tension and bottom under compression) and is not too useable. The color is rich green to yellow and brown and is good for face plate work. Leave the trunk wood in long enough lengths that you can manage and seal the ends. Rough turn as soon as you can, sealing the end grain inside and out and let dry for a month. Re-turn to round and seal only the outside for a month. Then it should be ready for final finish.