Question for the furniture maker’s using recyclable materials

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Forum topic by David Dean posted 10-13-2013 01:27 AM 1240 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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David Dean

608 posts in 2924 days

10-13-2013 01:27 AM

For some time my supports have up my board feet and oak to 500 to 700 bf and that is $1000 to $1400 and that isn’t in the budget but to make a long story short the dumpster that I get my ¼” glue board there was some pallets with 6’x3 1/2 “x ¾ “ white pine boards so here is my Question has anyone built nice furniture with recyclable materials and I don’t need any half ass yes or no’s allot of my work goes in people’s home’s and there kids bed room’s . I couldn’t live with myself knowing something I built heart some one’s child.

9 replies so far

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


15369 posts in 2643 days

#1 posted 10-13-2013 03:51 AM

“For some time my supports have up my board feet…”
- what does that mean?

”...knowing something I built heart some one’s child”
- you asking if recycled pallet lumber is somehow inherently harmful?

No half ass answer here, respectfully suggesting what you are asking isn’t clear.

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

View Loren's profile


10476 posts in 3672 days

#2 posted 10-13-2013 03:55 AM

You should be able to assess if the wood is treated because
there are marks in it from a machine or the color is weird or
it smells weird when cut.

If you want to make furniture to sell, use the wood you salvaged to
build sample pieces. Then you can take orders based on the
samples and use wood you know to be untreated.

A lot of people make furniture from reclaimed wood but it’s
generally old framing and flooring and stuff like that, not
treated lumber.

I do not generally build final pieces from salvaged materials,
but I build mock-ups and fixtures from it.

View David Dean's profile

David Dean

608 posts in 2924 days

#3 posted 10-13-2013 12:00 PM

Thanks Loren the wood isnt treated it has that nice pine smell to it but there is paint on some of them but I tryed to get peice’s thicker than 3/4” so the planer can get most of the paint. My dresser’s are the money maker.

View robscastle's profile


5093 posts in 2229 days

#4 posted 10-28-2013 08:04 PM

David I have made furniture from recycled timber mostly coffee size tables.

I have had no problems with them but I do loose a lot of timber getting the best from them.
Meaning the off cuts,split ends gang nail sections and warps bows and cups all need to be removed.
there is s lot of additional work required pre build, and you need to pay particular attention to foreign objects

Have a look at my blogs on working with recycled timber

-- Regards Rob

View bigblockyeti's profile


5138 posts in 1745 days

#5 posted 10-28-2013 08:52 PM

I went to the F*SHO here in Cleveland little over a month ago and there were multiple vendors selling furniture from reclaimed materials. One guy made a really neat looking bench/table pair with construction grade 2x wood that had been jointed and planed square and laminated together to make large slabs with a little purple heart as an accent. You could tell where the nails and screws had been by the slight discolorations, but both were finished with a heavy poly or epoxy that sealed everything in.

View David Dean's profile

David Dean

608 posts in 2924 days

#6 posted 10-29-2013 12:38 AM

Thanks guys I was hoping for some more help but I was thanking saw dust and glue for the nail hole’s.

View cabmaker's profile


1735 posts in 2834 days

#7 posted 10-29-2013 02:10 AM

I stay pretty busy building pieces for folks from reclaimed lumber.

Most of the time it is brought to me.

Reclaimed lbr. and heritage furniture go together like bees and honey.(notice i noted reclaimed lbr. not pallet salvage)

View oldnovice's profile


6898 posts in 3392 days

#8 posted 10-29-2013 05:14 AM

Yes I have done a number of projects out of recycled wood!

Three projects that were posted:
An end table, stairs treads, and window casings
A trivet for my Montana brother
A sofa table for my daughter

You notice that these are all red oak, 100 year old red oak to be specfic! This oak came from the Iowa farmhouse where my wife lived as a child and was salvaged before the fire department burned it down for practise. I still have a decent supply and two projects in the works using that wood.

I regret that I was not able to salvage the the upstairs wood as it was the same in size/design but was all pine and would have made some beautiful projects too.

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

View David Dean's profile

David Dean

608 posts in 2924 days

#9 posted 10-29-2013 11:40 AM

Thanks everyone after see the blogs and project pic’s I wouldnt thought any of it was recycled lumber and thanks again this gave’s me a good starting point.

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