Prepping Spalted Maple

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Forum topic by Aaron McCain posted 09-26-2010 07:41 AM 2318 views 0 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Aaron McCain

125 posts in 2839 days

09-26-2010 07:41 AM

Topic tags/keywords: spalted maple

Last fall, I picked up these bookmatched 1/4 inch boards for about $10. I had no idea what I was going to do with them, but I thought they looked cool. Now I’ve decided that I would like to used them as the lid and the front of a jewelry box for my wife.

Spalted Maple Boards

The top is a little punky and the surface is still a bit rough. I need some advice on:
1. Stabilizing the punky parts of the wood. Do I really just poor super glue (CA) onto the surface? Do you buy CA glue in a type of packaging that is bigger than the little metal tubes?
2. Filling the voids. Saw dust mixed with epoxy? What type of epoxy?
3. How do I smooth the surface and prepare it for a finish? ROS, planer?
4. Is it a bad idea to glue them to another board to increase the thickness?


3 replies so far

View TJ65's profile


1378 posts in 3050 days

#1 posted 09-27-2010 07:33 AM

sorry, cant help you out very much but some
Info on this post may help you out
or this site might you might find interesting

-- Theresa,

View millmgr's profile


27 posts in 3112 days

#2 posted 09-27-2010 07:18 PM

Those are awsome panels and would make a great jewelry box. May also be able to make bookmatched flat panels for doors. Be real careful working with the spalted woods, especially when sanding. The spores from the incipient decay (spalting) can cause respiritory problems. Wear a mask whenever working the wood.

View tnwood's profile


258 posts in 3086 days

#3 posted 09-27-2010 10:46 PM

I normally buy CA glue in a plastic bottle, I think it is about 1 oz or so. If the wood is real punky you aren’t going to have much success with thin CA glue so you might want to look into one of the thicker versions. I typically sand and pack the voids with the sawdust, add a couple of drops of CA glue to fill everything (you usually have to add more sawdust though) and let it dry. Then I take a scraper to it. It isn’t the best fix in the world but it works.

I just recently saw an article on a workbench construction where a fellow glued some thinner boards to 1/4 inch ply to use as end pieces on the bench. He had something I think that was maybe 1/2 thick; too thin to resaw easily; and he made a sandwich between two 1/2 in ply boards and then resawed the piece in the middle. I would think you could use 1/4 in ply to stabilize the ones you have.

I’ve never tried epoxy to stabilize punky wood. I wouldn’t try it on the pieces in the picture until you have tried it on some samples. I might work but I wouldn’t take a chance without some experimental work first.

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