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Baking wood to darken

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Forum topic by Mutha posted 02-05-2016 01:35 AM 701 views 1 time favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Mutha

8 posts in 446 days


02-05-2016 01:35 AM

Ok i have done some searching with no luck on an answer unless im just missing it. I saw a video a while back where a guy baked some wood to darken it all the way thru. I would like to do this with some pine and oak slats from some pallets. Any tips or pointers about the process would be greatly appreciated. Ultimately the wood will be used for toys, art, and i want to try an artisia piece. Thanks everyone.
Sam


13 replies so far

View HokieKen's profile

HokieKen

1812 posts in 606 days


#1 posted 02-05-2016 03:06 AM

I don’t think I would bake pallet wood. The outgassing from some of the chemicals used to treat some of that wood can be toxic over time. Heat may accelerate that timeline.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

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shampeon

1719 posts in 1651 days


#2 posted 02-05-2016 03:34 AM

It’s called “torrefied” wood. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Torrefaction

Lots of guitar manufacturers are using torrefied maple for their fingerboards and other parts. http://bourgeoisguitars.net/our-news/dana-bourgeois-on-torrefaction-for-acoustic-guitar/

I believe Lee Valley is now using torrefied maple for Veritas totes and knobs.

But yeah, don’t bake pallet wood. That’s a recipe for poisoning yourself.

-- ian | "You can't stop what's coming. It ain't all waiting on you. That's vanity."

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rick1955

258 posts in 898 days


#3 posted 02-05-2016 03:56 AM

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thermally_modified_wood

It’s called roasted, caramelized, torrefied or thermally modified wood. It was developed in Finland and uses autoclave a or special ovens. Not something the average person can do. You can buy it commercially. I’ve gotten samples of it.

Pallet wood would not be recommended because they often treat the the wood.

-- Working smarter with less tools is a true crafts person...

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rick1955

258 posts in 898 days


#4 posted 02-05-2016 04:08 AM

You will just destroy the wood.

-- Working smarter with less tools is a true crafts person...

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conifur

955 posts in 619 days


#5 posted 02-05-2016 04:11 AM

Cant figure pallet wood wood workers???? Cant make a silk purse out of a sows ear!!!!!!!!!!

-- Knowledge and experience equals Wisdom, Michael Frankowski

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Mutha

8 posts in 446 days


#6 posted 02-05-2016 05:22 AM

Thank you for the replies. The video i saw a guy baked some oak in a small toaster oven. Made it dark all the way thru so cutting sanding and shaping was not an issue. Ive looked for the video probably 15 hours or more and just cant find it. As far as pallet wood goes, Im not trying to be snooty here but, Im not sure why reclaiming pallet wood is such an issue. Im aware that most people may not know where their pallets come from, but i do. I personally know the guys who build these pallets. They are food grade wich means they are heat treated, no chemicals are allowed, and they are used 1 time to haul beer from attalla al to alexandria al then are either given away or burned. I also personally know the shippers and recievers. Its a shame so much wood is going to waste. i would be crazy not to atleast explore a way to use it. Of course if i didnt know the exact history of these particular pallets or if they where chemically treated i would not even fool with them. But thats just me. Again thank you all for the replies.
Sam

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rick1955

258 posts in 898 days


#7 posted 02-05-2016 07:48 AM

Do a search for torrefied lumber in surrounding states.
http://cwghardwoodoutlet.com/hardwoods.html
This is one of the places near me.
Prices are reasonable.

-- Working smarter with less tools is a true crafts person...

View HokieKen's profile

HokieKen

1812 posts in 606 days


#8 posted 02-05-2016 12:19 PM



Thank you for the replies. The video i saw a guy baked some oak in a small toaster oven. Made it dark all the way thru so cutting sanding and shaping was not an issue. Ive looked for the video probably 15 hours or more and just cant find it. As far as pallet wood goes, Im not trying to be snooty here but, Im not sure why reclaiming pallet wood is such an issue. Im aware that most people may not know where their pallets come from, but i do. I personally know the guys who build these pallets. They are food grade wich means they are heat treated, no chemicals are allowed, and they are used 1 time to haul beer from attalla al to alexandria al then are either given away or burned. I also personally know the shippers and recievers. Its a shame so much wood is going to waste. i would be crazy not to atleast explore a way to use it. Of course if i didnt know the exact history of these particular pallets or if they where chemically treated i would not even fool with them. But thats just me. Again thank you all for the replies.
Sam

- Mutha

If you know the origin of the wood and it’s use, then you’re right, use that stuff! That is not the case in most situations where people are asking about re-purposing pallet wood though and most people aren’t aware, or simply don’t care, that long term exposure to the chemicals used to treat the pallets used in some industries can be hazardous. I’m not trying to be “snooty” either but just don’t feel that in general people should be grabbing pallets from local stores and building toys or coffee tables out of them.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

View jdh122's profile

jdh122

879 posts in 2285 days


#9 posted 02-05-2016 12:42 PM

Pallets are required by law to be stamped with information on how they were treated. If it says HT it means it was simply heat treated, no chemicals used. Stay away from MB (fumigated with terrible stuff). Chemical fumigation of pallets is banned in some places (Canada and the EU, it seems), but in any case they’re clearly marked. Take a look at: http://www.canadianpallets.com/en/About-Pallets_50

Of course, (other than in the case of the pallets discussed here) you don’t what may have been spilled on the pallet after it was made and the sand and grit is likely to be bad for your tools.

-- Jeremy, in the Acadian forests

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shampeon

1719 posts in 1651 days


#10 posted 02-05-2016 07:47 PM

Most standard shipping pallets I’ve seen have been used and abused, so you can’t make out the stamp.

Also, be aware of pitch oozing out and burning on any pine you’re trying. Keep an extinguisher handy.

-- ian | "You can't stop what's coming. It ain't all waiting on you. That's vanity."

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HokieKen

1812 posts in 606 days


#11 posted 02-05-2016 08:29 PM

I have literally hundreds of pallets in the building here at work and I’ve never noticed a stamp on a single one. Of course I’ve never looked either… going to go check in a bit and see if any/all are stamped.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

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eflanders

87 posts in 1318 days


#12 posted 02-05-2016 08:29 PM

jdh122 has it right but so does shampeon. If you are looking to just color the wood as you said, then you can do this with a torch. It accentuates the grain substantially and it takes some practice to do consistently. Heating the wood can also surface harden the wood some depending on the wood type and age. Bamboo flyrod makers “heat treat” bamboo all of the time for color and affecting the action on the rod they are building. Native Americans also use to heat treat the tips of their arrows to harden them for better penetration etc. Bamboo rod makers heat treat a variety of ways. Some use a flame while others will use an oven.

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Mutha

8 posts in 446 days


#13 posted 02-05-2016 10:40 PM


If you know the origin of the wood and it s use, then you re right, use that stuff! That is not the case in most situations where people are asking about re-purposing pallet wood though and most people aren t aware, or simply don t care, that long term exposure to the chemicals used to treat the pallets used in some industries can be hazardous. I m not trying to be “snooty” either but just don t feel that in general people should be grabbing pallets from local stores and building toys or coffee tables out of them.

- HokieKen

Yeah i agree wholeheartedly, id not grab a random pallet from whereever and use it. I stick to the pallets i mentioned and a buddy of mine owns 2 machine shops so i score wood from him quite often. I have grandkids underfoot constantly so nothing thats potentially harmful comes in our house or my shop.

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