“There are more and more mandates to divert wood from the waste stream and for companies to use reused products. I told the folks back home, you know, that I’m running a logging business in sight of the skyline of New York City, and they said, ‘What?'” ~Stubby Warmbold, CitiLog~
The answer may be…Stubby Warmbold, a self-professed URBAN LOGGER from Pittstown, NJ, and one of the truest Tree People I have met to date. With some folks we meet for the first time, it only takes a few minutes to understand who it is you’re speaking to. When it comes to the environment Stubby is a doer. He candidly expresses little patience for all the “high brow chatter from board room eco-activists.” Stubby believes saving one usable tree from a wood chipper makes good sense…saving tens of thousands speaks for itself.
Stubby is convinced that “when a tree dies, or is cut down, it’s just the beginning of its usefulness”. For years Stubby has harvested dead, dying, culled and discarded trees from urban forests within a 500 mile radius of his NJ headquarters. From Binghamton, NY to Pittsburgh, PA, NYC, Washington, DC and many other urban centers, we don’t typically think of as a resource for timber, Stubby collects and in a sense rescues thousands of trees to live another day as kitchen cabinets, flooring, fine furniture and many other useful wood products. The alternative fate of this wonderful living resource is often a mulch chipper, fireplace or worse…an anonymous grave at a landfill.
Because city grown trees face liabilities less typical than their forested cousins, such as higher levels of air pollution and the compression and abuse of living among people and traffic; thousands die and are discarded annually. Stubby finds a wealth of use for these unfortunate specimens. Some of the smaller trees and those which bend and twist are occasionally converted to firewood; but the larger, straighter trees become saw logs and are trucked to Amish Mills in Pennsylvania where they re-emerge in their new life furnishing homes around the country. Many traditional high production mills have little to no interest in urban logs. The work involved to remove metal and other foreign materials is too labor intensive. Not so with his Amish colleagues in Lewiston and other areas of PA. Raised in a culture of working by hand, they set about the task of methodically preparing the logs for their conversion to furnishings; and in some cases full sized Timbers similar to the ones we and our Timber Framer colleagues use to build homes for our owners.
In fact Stubby believes the Urban Logs produce even more interesting characteristics. “Urban trees aren’t like commercial lumber. They’re non-traditional logs. Each tree has unique mottles and scars. Some are crooked, some are sick, and some have metal in them.” Apparently these “defects” can result in very interesting grain patterns and unusual surface finishes. We have used reclaimed timber in some of our homes. The effect is startling. The timbers display a patina and markings not available in fresh milled woodlot timbers. Some owners prefer the effect either in some or all of the Timber Frame anatomy in their homes.
Stubby understands the benefit of repurposing timber and is glad that there appears to be an elevating consciousness for this brand of retro-conservation. “There are more and more mandates to divert wood from the waste stream and for companies to use reused products. I told the folks back home, you know, that I’m running a logging business in sight of the skyline of New York City, and they said, ‘What?”
Contact Stubby Warmbold at: http://www.citilogs.com, email@example.com, (908) 735.2609
Jack Costantino, President