Nasty smelling wood!!!

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Forum topic by willie posted 597 days ago 771 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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456 posts in 1059 days

597 days ago

Cut up a piece of wood today from a pile of free wood I got a few months back. I can’t identify what it is but it looks like poplar. The grain and color are similar and density and weight are about the same. That’s where the similarity stops! This stuff smells like it was the back wall behind the urinals at Yankee Stadium since day one!!! I about gagged, this stuff smells so bad, but only while you’re cutting or sanding it. After the dust settles and you blow it off, the smell is gone. Does anyone have any idea what this might be? I’ll post some pictures tomorrow but not sure they would help. Be glad I can’t post the smell!!!

-- Every day above ground is a good day!!!

10 replies so far

View Brandon's profile


4137 posts in 1556 days

#1 posted 597 days ago

Perhaps it is pooplar?

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

View pintodeluxe's profile


3281 posts in 1418 days

#2 posted 597 days ago

Alaskan Yellow Cedar smells like that. It looks similar to poplar. Very distinctive odor.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View a1Jim's profile


112002 posts in 2182 days

#3 posted 597 days ago

Cotton wood ?

-- Custom furniture

View lunn's profile


206 posts in 914 days

#4 posted 597 days ago

Several years i had some maple trees trimed and was going to use the limbs for firewood. After a while it smelled just as you said. I think the sap soured causing the smell.

-- What started as a hobbie is now a full time JOB!

View RVroman's profile


163 posts in 629 days

#5 posted 597 days ago

Cottonwood would be my thought as well. That stuff is horrible!

-- Robert --- making toothpicks one 3x3x12 blank at a time!

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Monte Pittman

13378 posts in 943 days

#6 posted 596 days ago

It doesn’t fit the color, but Russian olive is in the category smell wise. I compare it to a chain smoker with bad gas. However, Russian olive would be a chocolate brown.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it. - It's not ability that we often lack, but the patience to use our ability

View Wildwood's profile


962 posts in 739 days

#7 posted 596 days ago

Trees can pick up nasty smell from where they grow and minerals in the soil. Can also pick up odors in storage.

-- Bill

View Gshepherd's profile


1437 posts in 806 days

#8 posted 596 days ago

What about it being some Piss Elm….... Serious, I know some Elm trees do smell like piss when cutting into it. Spring time as well….

American Elm…....

-- What we do in life will Echo through Eternity........

View Cajun  Box Sculptor's profile (online now)

Cajun Box Sculptor

4939 posts in 1913 days

#9 posted 596 days ago

Stop farting in the workshop and you will not have to blame it on the wood.

View willie's profile


456 posts in 1059 days

#10 posted 596 days ago

I’ve never worked cottonwood before, I’ll have to look into that possibility. Same with the yellow cedar. I have some olive wood, but not Russian, and it too is a chocolate brown. We had to take down a number of elm trees a few years back due that Dutch Elm disease and I remember that “piss elm” smell. Believe me this stuff is way worse! And last, my farts, even on my worst day, don’t smell that bad! The wife would throw me out of the house for sure! I’m glad this one small project will use all of it I have!!

-- Every day above ground is a good day!!!

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