Pine and Pine Beetles

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Forum topic by Fingersleft posted 10-05-2007 04:17 PM 1043 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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71 posts in 4072 days

10-05-2007 04:17 PM

Topic tags/keywords: pine beetles investation

As I may have mentioned in some of my other posts, In my neck of the woods, we’re blessed with a good deal of pine forest – Ponderosa, Lodgepole, Fir, and other varities. This time of year, I spend some time cutting fire wood. We are also, unfortunately, blessed with Pine Beetles, which kill weak or old trees by boring holes through the bark, just below the cambrian layer. While there have been attempts to erradicate them, most have failed and, in fact these attempts have ended up doing more damage than good. I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s simply nature’s way of cullling the forest. In some areas it is most severe. In other areas, like where I live, it takes only a few trees each year.

Now to my question: When the tree dies, it develops black, dark brown and even red and dark blue tinting to the wood. In actuality it produces beautiful coloring. I’ve never used it to build with because I have been concerned that the coloring will not remain stable. There is no indication that the colored sections are any weaker than the other sections. In fact, the wood appears to be slightly more dense. Some turners seem to like this material and claim it finishes well and doesn’t seem to change over time.

Has anyone out there ever used such woods for furniture projects? I would hate to waste the time to cut, mill and dry this wood, and of course the time and effort to build with it, just to find out that it’s doesn’t remain stable or becomes weak.

-- Bob

7 replies so far

View MsDebbieP's profile


18616 posts in 4336 days

#1 posted 10-05-2007 07:34 PM

I don’t have the answer but I sure hope it’s worth cutting. I’d love to see the beautiful wood when you’ve created something with it.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View Karson's profile


35140 posts in 4576 days

#2 posted 10-05-2007 08:41 PM

Blue stain is quite common in pine. You will find it in Lumber at the big Box Stores. The colors might not be stable and may change over time but I’d give it a try and see what happens.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia †

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

4029 posts in 4239 days

#3 posted 10-06-2007 12:52 AM

Could be as pretty as ambrosia maple, which is caused by a predacious beetle as well.

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over a decade.

View dennis mitchell's profile

dennis mitchell

3994 posts in 4490 days

#4 posted 10-06-2007 05:30 PM

I do use a lot of the beetle killed pine. I just use full logs so I’m not fully qualified to answer. The colors will change. Pine oxidises quite a bit, so you will get some change. It should be no different than chainsaw killed pine. Could be pretty nice. We use to get some cheap blue stain pine after Mount Saint Hellens blew and flattened so much forest. It can be beautiful.

View Dadoo's profile


1789 posts in 4166 days

#5 posted 10-07-2007 07:24 PM

Try “weathering” a piece of board on the roof for like a week or so and see if it changes color much. Either way though, I’ll bet it makes for some nice rustic looking projects.

-- Bob Vila would be so proud of you!

View Fingersleft's profile


71 posts in 4072 days

#6 posted 10-08-2007 10:54 AM

Thanks for your comments.

Yesteday I cut a number of logs into slabs and racked them up to dry. It will be quite a while before I can use them. We’ll see what the turn into.

Thanks again.

-- Bob

View shaun's profile


360 posts in 4081 days

#7 posted 10-08-2007 01:16 PM

I’m interested to see what happenes here, please keep us posted Bob.

-- I've cut that board three times and it's still too short!

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