Halting Spalting?

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Forum topic by Raftermonkey posted 1402 days ago 970 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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560 posts in 1515 days

1402 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: question oak water oak spalted spalting burl bowl platter carving finishing

Hiya folks, I’ve got a Water Oak burl cap that I cut several months back that I have started working on. It was an ant resort in a former life. I am wondering if I need to do anything to it to stop the spalting process. It is filled with tons of worm/ant holes and is super spalted. I am thinking it will be a shallow fruit bowl or platter. Will the spalting continue or will it just stop when I carve it out, sand it and put butcher block oil on it? What kind of prepping do I need to do before I put appers and banenes in it? As always, thanks for help.


-- -Zeke- "I hate to rush off, but I gotta go see a man about a log"

5 replies so far

View docholladay's profile


1286 posts in 1661 days

#1 posted 1402 days ago

I would think that aplication of some sort of sealer should do the trick. I think you would need to cut off the supply of oxygen. Not sure butcher block oil will do that. Shellac is food safe and should do the trick.

-- Hey, woodworking ain't brain surgery. Just do something and keep trying till you get it. Doc

View HerbC's profile


1154 posts in 1461 days

#2 posted 1402 days ago

The spalting is a process caused by the presence of live fungus organizims (sp?) in the wood. They require moisture to survive and will die when the wood reaches a reasonably dryness level.

Good luck with your project. I’m looking forward to seeing it.

Be Careful!


-- Herb, Florida - Here's why I close most messages with "Be Careful!"

View Raftermonkey's profile


560 posts in 1515 days

#3 posted 1402 days ago

Thanks Herb. Hopefully have some pics up tomorrow or Monday.

-- -Zeke- "I hate to rush off, but I gotta go see a man about a log"

View daltxguy's profile


1373 posts in 2516 days

#4 posted 1402 days ago

Just get it dry and it will stop. It may continue for a while even if it is under cover until it gets dry enough all through.

Putting sealer on it would actually make it continue spalting, in my opinion if not properly dried. But once dry, you can finish as you please.

Just remember spalting is rotting wood so some parts may be or will get soft.

If you can rough carve it now, that might speed up the drying process.

-- If you can't joint it, bead it!

View CampD's profile


1195 posts in 2088 days

#5 posted 1402 days ago

Put it in the oven for an hour at 200, that’ll stop it

-- Doug...

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