How to Find Wood in RUST

Wood is the Essential Building Block Material in RUST

Almost every survival crafter you play starts with the same first step, find Wood, and hit some form of tree. This concept is not terribly different when it comes to finding wood in RUST, but there are some ways to be more efficient. Nearly all basic armor, tools, or weapons will require wood for crafting. Luckily, wood on the RUST island is bountiful, and there are several ways of getting your hands on it quickly, and as you progress, a few ways to produce it in bulk. 

Once you’ve scouted the map and you’re ready to lay down roots, it’s time to start hunting wood. You’ll need it to lay down twig to set up the footprint of your base and build your starter or temporary base as you begin farming in earnest. As well as being essential for base building, wood finds its way into most crafted base components.

Most of the starting armor also requires wood, all of which are worth crafting for their added defense and radiation protection. Before you get your hands on Hazat Suits, wood armor boasts some of the best radiation protection in the game.

Finally, wood powers most base components, such as Stone Fireplaces, Barbeques, Small Furnaces & Large Furnaces, Small Oil Refineries, and Water Purifiers, to name a few. The lucky byproduct of burning wood in any of these devices is charcoal production required for Gun Powder, letting you craft ammunition and explosives further into the wipe.

There are four main ways of finding wood in RUST.

  1. Harvest it from the Ground
  2. Chop Down Trees
  3. Break Down Tools, Weapons, and Base Parts
  4. Purchase From the Outpost

Harvest it from the ground

Once you start the game, you will quickly find wood on the ground in a few different forms. There are stumps, fallen branches, large logs, and driftwood. This wood can be harvested using your Rock, other tools, such as a Stone Hatchet or Metal Hatchet, and in some cases by merely picking it up.

Wood stumps

Wood Stumps in RUST

Wood stumps spawn in the desert, arctic, and temperate biomes. They can be picked up off the ground without a tool. Look at the stump, put your cursor over it, and press the E key. It will automatically be added to your inventory at 50 wood per stump. These stumps appear quite frequently in wooded areas and can sometimes be hard to spot amongst the grass and bushes, similar to looking for hemp bushes when finding cloth. If you keep your eyes peeled, you will quickly find the starting wood necessary to craft a hatchet. 

While this method of gathering is relatively slow, it is thankfully quiet. Quietly gathering in the early game can be invaluable as the players running around hitting trees make an awful lot of noise, and tend to have a lot of wood in their inventory. Getting to the point of farming efficiency is the primary goal when farming wood at the very start.

Large logs

Large logs spawn in the arctic, arid, tundra, and temperate biomes. These large logs will often be covered in moss and snow and can be difficult to spot in more shady areas; however, they’re an easy win for gathering wood as they return a high yield amount per hit. There is no minigame associated with these fallen trees.

Fallen branches

Harvest Fallen Branches for Wood in RUST

Fallen branches spawn in the arctic, arid, temperate, and tundra biomes. They are similar to large logs in that they return a high yield of wood per hit and will require a tool to harvest the wood. There is also no minigame associated with them.


Harvest Driftwood in RUST

Driftwood can spawn in the arctic, arid, temperate, and tundra biomes along the coast. They are also similar to large logs and branches, and return a high yield of wood per hit, and require a tool to harvest the wood. There is also no minigame associated with them.

Chop down trees

Trees are plentiful on the island and will be the primary way of finding wood in RUST. Don’t worry. While you will inevitably make Captain Planet cry, the trees will automatically respawn across the island of RUST. Almost all trees can be harvested, except for a few trees in the swamp biomes. There are many tools you can put to work when finding wood in RUST.

You can use the rock you start the game to cut down trees, but it is the slowest of all gathering tools. It is smarter to grab wood and stone from the ground to craft a stone hatchet. Each device gathers different amounts of wood depending on what kind of tree you’re cutting down.

From standard large trees, each tool will harvest:

ToolMax YieldTime
Rocks50030 seconds – 1 minute
Bone Club58625 – 50 seconds
Salvaged Hammer75820 – 40 seconds
Stone Hatchet81020 – 35 seconds
Metal Hatchet86715 – 25 seconds
Salvaged Axe100017 – 25 seconds
Chainsaw10003 – 5 seconds

You can intuit the amount of wood in each tree roughly from its size. Large beeches, oak, for example, will yield the maximum amount. Smaller pine and palms will give about 3/4s of maximum yield, whereas you’ll only get 1/4 of harvest from fallen logs, large branches, or driftwood.

When you strike a tree that can, you will hear a thunk and see a red X appear somewhere on the tree. Knocking the X again will count as a double hit on the tree, cutting down trees faster, however, for the same yield.

The most substantial difference between tools is their harvesting speed. The more wood in a tree, the longer it will take. The harvest rate will also change based on how often you hit the red X on each swing. While you will find salvaged hammers and be able to craft bone clubs quite early, the speed at which they gather is so low that it is essential to invest in a stone hatchet as soon as possible.

The fastest wood gathering tool is, without a doubt, the chainsaw, which you can purchase for 125 Scrap at the Outpost monument. Just keep in mind that it costs Low-Grade Fuel to operate. The chainsaw’s major drawback is the noise it makes while running is so loud that you’re unlikely to hear other players nearby. 

Break down tools, weapons, and base parts

Recycle Components for Wood in RUST

When you no longer need your old wood and stone tools, you can toss them in the recycler at outposts to retrieve at least a small portion of the wood costs back. The method is a poor way to get wood as your primary source, but you may as well be making use of those old pieces of armor and gear. There’s also the chance that you’ve raided another player and acquired a large collection of tools, components, and items that are worth using the recycler.

Purchase from the Outpost

Purchasing Wood at the Outpost in RUST

Finally, the fastest way of getting wood in bulk is by trading stone in at the Outpost monument. The exchange rate is 150 stone to 500 wood. So if you’ve been farming Sulfur and Metal Ore, you might as well be picking up those stone nodes you see as well. You might be adding anything more to your base and have little need for wood. But before long, you’ll find yourself in desperate need of charcoal. So, run your excess stone to the outpost and trade it in, and toss those piles of wood into small furnaces.

How you find wood in RUST is up to you

There are enough methods of wood farming that you’ll find the one that suits your play style. Will you choose to gather it tree by tree dutifully. Or invest in a chainsaw and cut down swathes of the forest at a time. Maybe you’re the stone entrepreneur. All methods work and bring their risks and benefits. Finding what works for your team will only take a little time and experience.

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About Digital Ghost

Dg is the founder and co-owner of Corrosion Hour, a niche gaming community established in 2016 focusing on the survival game RUST. He is an active and contributing member of numerous other RUST communities. As a community leader and server owner for over 15 years, he spends much of his time researching and writing guides about survival games, covering topics such as server administration, game mechanics, and community growth.

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