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Working with spalted wood

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Forum topic by mbs posted 05-21-2012 12:53 PM 1243 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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mbs

1437 posts in 1593 days


05-21-2012 12:53 PM

I have a 2” thick spalted walnut that i want to use for a chair seat. The spalted area is in the center and is a half inch thick be two inches wide. Is there something like krazy glue that I can use to harden the soft wood? If so, how does it look when finished and how deep does the glue penetrate? The white part is very soft.

-- Sorry the reply is so long. I didn't have time to write a short reply.


11 replies so far

View tyskkvinna's profile

tyskkvinna

1308 posts in 1639 days


#1 posted 05-21-2012 01:19 PM

How spalted is it? Just enough to change colours, or enough to make the wood noticeably soft/delicate compared to the rest? Or perhaps enough that it looks like it may fall out if you push it too hard.

You can soak it with CA glue. You can also soak it with wood stabiliser. I like the kind from Minwax. For a chair seat, I would consider using epoxy or BarTop type finish on it. That will completely encase it AND provide a durable finish for the chair.

If you get the thin CA (krazy/super) glue, it will soak down pretty hard—and you’re going to go through a lot of it! If you use the thicker glue, it will just settle towards the surface.

-- Lis - Michigan - http://www.missmooseart.com - https://www.etsy.com/people/lisbokt

View bigkev's profile

bigkev

197 posts in 1281 days


#2 posted 05-21-2012 11:27 PM

Google Minwax wood hardener.

I see the back braces in the background. Looks like you’re off to a good start. That’s going to be an awesome seat once you get it finished. The grain matches beautifully.

-- Kevin, South Carolina

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mbs

1437 posts in 1593 days


#3 posted 05-22-2012 12:04 AM

I have the rockers glued up too. the second chair goes much faster than the first.

I’ll try the minwax.

thanks, guys.

-- Sorry the reply is so long. I didn't have time to write a short reply.

View Tom148's profile

Tom148

39 posts in 917 days


#4 posted 05-22-2012 12:50 AM

I like that piece of wood. Looking at the end grain it almost looks like you should flip it over and let the grain flair work for you. That’s what I like about figured wood. You almost can’t do it wrong. It is correct if you like it.

God luck with your project.

-- Tom

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mbs

1437 posts in 1593 days


#5 posted 05-22-2012 08:34 PM

I’ve wondered which way I should orient the wood. I can’t decide which way it would look best.

-- Sorry the reply is so long. I didn't have time to write a short reply.

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11659 posts in 2341 days


#6 posted 06-02-2012 06:37 PM

You might want to flip it over and go with the natural “scallop” of the grain pattern . The picture appears to be “white rot” which is usually pretty punky compared to actual spalting.

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

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mbs

1437 posts in 1593 days


#7 posted 06-02-2012 06:45 PM

It is punky. I put minwax wood hardener on it and it’s better but I think I’ll take your advice and turn it over

Thanks.

-- Sorry the reply is so long. I didn't have time to write a short reply.

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Dusty56

11659 posts in 2341 days


#8 posted 06-02-2012 11:57 PM

Looking forward to seeing the finished product : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View woodworker59's profile

woodworker59

560 posts in 854 days


#9 posted 06-06-2012 04:38 AM

I second the flip, you could almost follow the natural flow of the grain to make your hollows in the seat.. you gotta love black walnut it makes a great chair.. Are you by any chance making Sam Maloof type chairs? I did notice you mentioned rockers and he loved to make his rockers out of black walnut.. just wondering..
remember the pics…...

-- Papa@papaswoodworking.com

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Dusty123

29 posts in 854 days


#10 posted 06-06-2012 04:51 AM

You can use System 3 Epoxy to harden up that area of the wood. There is a fast, med and slow cure. Get the slow cure for the especially in the hot summer months. You want the epoxy to set up very slowly so it can be adsorbed by the wood. This will darken the wood quite a bit, but will make it very strong. If yo are not familiar in using this epoxy, make sure you keep the ratios correct and mix it for several minutes just to make sure.

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mbs

1437 posts in 1593 days


#11 posted 06-06-2012 11:50 PM

Woodworker59 – I’m using Hal Taylors design which is similar to Sam’s. I have a blog that shows the first rocker I made with Leopard wood and walnut.

I decided to flip the seat. The minwax hardened enough for bottom of the seat. I do have some system 3 epoxy too if i need it.

thanks to all that commented.

-- Sorry the reply is so long. I didn't have time to write a short reply.

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