A Closer Look at Sinker Cypress

Paula and Randy from Florida Crotchwood Mobile Sawmill drop by on occasion to saw River-Recovered® heart cypress logs into beautiful slabs that can be handcrafted into gorgeous mantles, tables, shelves, signage, accents and anything else you can imagine.

This video shows our own Joe Collins skillfully crafting a fireplace mantle out of a River-Recovered heart cypress slab.  Take a look:

Often referred to as, “The Wood Eternal”, antique heart cypress (a.k.a. sinker cypress) is one of the few remaining prehistoric species.  Coloring can vary, displaying anything from warm honey to light chocolate tones. Traditional grades (Select, Vertical) can feature a plain sawn feathery, subtle arching swirling grain and, in some cases, vertical pinstripes. Midnight, Pecky, and Character heart cypress each have their own distinguishing characteristics for a more unique look.

Looking to incorporate heart cypress into your upcoming design project? If so, the antique wood specialists at Goodwin can help you determine which grade of heart cypress best suits your upcoming project. Give us a call to learn more today!

Properly Kiln Drying Antique Wood

Rare, antique wood must be handled with great care.  One reason why Goodwin is considered the industry gold standard is our meticulous kiln drying process. There are many reasons for properly kiln drying the wood to a consistent moisture content, including eliminating and preventing mold and bugs. Our founder and company sawyer, George Goodwin, ensures each board is properly kiln dried and precisely milled to the highest standards.  Let’s take a look at our signature kiln drying process.

Prepping the Wood

We examine each River-Recovered® log and reclaimed board or beam to ensure we are preserving the best and most beautiful sections of the wood. Our company sawyer, George Goodwin, carefully saws the wood.  The ends of the boards are then sealed with a wax-based product to prevent cracking and checking.

Air Dry

The sawn wood then needs time to properly air dry. It takes a few weeks for River-Recovered heart pine to achieve its ideal moisture content. River-Recovered heart cypress can take several months due to a higher fiber saturation point.

Pre Dry

After air drying, the wood is then sent to Goodwin’s ‘pre-dryer’, which is comprised of 16 fans (4’ across each) that blow air across the boards in stacks. We allow 1” between each layer to ensure the air circulates around each board.

Dehumidification Dry Kiln

Antique heart pine and heart cypress is very dense. Kiln drying fast with steam causes cracking and checking. Goodwin has invested in a dehumidification dry kiln that dries the wood slowly over the course of several weeks to ensure the ideal moisture content is achieved without affecting its quality.

Monitor Moisture Content

The moisture content of the wood is monitored several times a day. We slowly increase the temperature until 140 degrees is consistently achieved across the entire load. Once the wood comes out of the kiln, we let it relax for a few days before milling it into our signature River-Recovered and reclaimed heart pine and heart cypress.

The following video shows pallets of River-Recovered and reclaimed wood being placed into our dehumidification dry kiln.  Enjoy!

Sinker Cypress, It Never Gets Old

Sinker cypress logs are beautiful and have such a charming mystery about them that seeing these antique River-Recovered® gentle giants never gets old!  Founder, owner and company sawyer, George Goodwin, has worked with sinker cypress for more than four decades.  George is an excellent storyteller and always enjoys educating people about antique wood.

In this video, George shows us several recently recovered sinker cypress logs that are being prepped for milling.  The first log dates back prior to the 1880s.  We know this because of its ax cut ends.  Axes were used to cut wood prior to the 1880s.  After 1880, most logs were cross cut.

George shows us another interesting log that still has part of the wooden pegs that were used to secure it to the raft as it traveled down the Altamaha River in Southeast Georgia.

These logs are naturally bug and rot resistant, making them perfect for exterior siding. They will soon be transformed into Goodwin’s gorgeous River-Recovered Heart Cypress where they will see a second life as beautiful paneling or siding for a home or commercial space.

Want to learn more about how to incorporate Heart Cypress into you living or work space?  If so, give our antique wood experts a call today!

Heart Cypress Feature Wall

Heart Cypress Feature Wall

Adds Beauty and “Grace” to Non-Profit Reception Area

Grace Place, a non-profit organization in Naples, Florida that helps children and families, now has a gorgeous River-Recovered® Heart Cypress feature wall in their reception area to recognize their generous donors.  The wood feature wall was crafted using 120 sq.ft of River-Recovered Heart Cypress Select and Vertical with trim.  Dan Petersen of Heritage Wood Finish Company coated it with his signature UV Diamond 7, a proprietary finish he formulated specifically for Goodwin.

Goodwin partnered with David Corban Architects, who were referred to us by our good friend Tenna Florian from Lake/Flato Architects. This is one of the most creative uses of a wood feature wall we have seen.  What a unique and beautiful way for a non-profit organization to recognize and demonstrate how much they value their donors!

Antique Heart Cypress Adds “Character” to Contemporary Office Space

Goodwin Company was proud to supply our River-Recovered® Heart Cypress Character for a reception desk, kitchen and a number of gorgeous feature walls in the ultra-modern office space for Visit Tampa Bay. Located in one of the beautiful skyscrapers that adorn the Tampa, Florida skyline, Visit Tampa Bay is a premier promoter of “the hip, urban heart of the Gulf Coast of Florida.”

Goodwin’s River-Recovered Heart Cypress Character adorns the walls and various areas throughout the office space and is also featured in the Unlock Tampa Bay Visitors Center. The heart cypress paneling gives a nod to the 2000-year-old bald cypress trees that historically lined all of the bayous and sloughs around the bay.  An added touch is the cigar boxes that are embedded in the various walls denoting Tampa’s (and Ybor City’s) rich history as the cigar capital of the world.

Check out these stunning photos by Native House Photography:

Goodwin produced 1600sf of 5-1/4″ River-Recovered Heart Cypress Character for this project.  The wood was prefinished with oil by Heritage Wood Finish Company and installed by AWS Carpenter/ Contractors of Clearwater, Florida.

If you are in the Tampa area, be sure to stop by the Unlock Tampa Bay Visitors Center.  They have some great gifts and mementos of Tampa.  The wonderful staff are also available to direct you to points of interest and help plan your stay. Oh, and while there, be sure to check out the heart cypress feature wall and let us know what you think!