“Being “Treeincarnaters” has become a profitable part-time business for woodworkers Mark Udey and Ray Lindgren. Their full-time jobs maintaining roads and mowing give them plenty of opportunity to observe the changing landscape around Swede Home, Nebraska. Thrifty by nature, they noticed how many storm-damaged and bulldozed logs were ending up in brush piles or landfills—potentially good lumber that only needed transportation and sawing. After Ray, who makes rolltop desks, watched a custom sawyer turn a log into lumber, he and Mark decided they wanted to make their own lumber.
They had two goals: One was to have fun, now and in the future: “We want a big pile of free lumber so we can putter at woodworking when we retire,” Mark says. Secondly, they hoped to make some money, to pay for the sawmill and to supplement their retirement. They began with one simple rule: They resolved not to harvest any trees just for lumber. They would only cut wood that would otherwise go to waste.”