Big Oak Trees Means Big Oak Boards

Jan 25, 2022 | wood knowledge, wood products

There’s Oak, and then there’s Oak that’s bigger than your forklift.

large oak boules at hillgrove drying shed that will make very wide homegrown boards of oak wood

English Oak boards of substance.

The stack of Oak boules you see sitting up against the shed wall at our Hillgrove site is the product of a very satisfying afternoon during last season’s sawmilling. It was all cut from the same enormous tree which was felled out of necessity as part of an established silvicultural process and long term woodland management plan.

Tom devoted a morning to examining the smallish parcel of round timber carefully before deciding to mark them up as he did for for the bandmill. He selected specific thicknesses for specific log sections with the end use in mind. As a result largest girth logs were sawn at 54 and 65mm.

These boards will be extraordinary.


Sawn Oak boules air-drying undercover.

At 1.3m girth and 3.8m long the prime grade log you see transformed into boule, now hiding behind the forklift truck (and featured in the photo’s below) was sawn at 65mm thickness. This created 15 waney edge oak boards which vary in width from 900 to 1300mm and means the whole boule is just under 4.5m3 in volume which equates currently to 4.5 tonnes.

Once it has had time to dry and thoroughly evaporate the majority of it moisture (ideally leaving about 12 or 13% only) the boule should be closer to 3 tonnes in weight, containing individual Oak boards of approximately 200kg each. Not for the fainthearted.

We wager the majority of these extraordinary boards will be used for furniture making, kitchen making and possible some for interior joinery works.

Thank goodness the new Joulin lift will be in before the guys need to handle it again.







See the sustainably sourced OAK BOARD STOCK certified Grown in Britain

Watch the little video of how we stick out boules for air drying

Read more about Oak as a species

Grow your Wood Knowledge about Oak

Learn about Oak grading and download your own copy of Making the Grade

Watch our videos on Oak and our Oak stock

Interested in buying whole boules? We currently aren’t showing our Boule stock online. If you’d like to enquire about see and buying boules email us.