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What are these discolorations?

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Forum topic by daviddoria posted 07-23-2014 12:31 PM 1061 views 0 times favorited 16 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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daviddoria

66 posts in 1404 days


07-23-2014 12:31 PM

Topic tags/keywords: discoloration

I am working with some cherry. I noticed some discoloration in a very “unnatural” shape that doesn’t seem to be in the style of sapwood or something like that.

You can see two “splotches” on the top of the piece here (the one in the top-center is shaped like a “7” and the one on the top right is shaped like a “T”):

Does anyone know what this is? I like to at least have a response so when the person I give it to says “what is this large weird thing in my tray?” I can at least go into some big story about how interesting trees are and how this happens, etc. haha.

Thanks!

David


16 replies so far

View mahdee's profile

mahdee

3553 posts in 1233 days


#1 posted 07-23-2014 01:46 PM

You can say some trees register their age by using some of the chemicals from the soil and rain to discolor their wood grain.. This one was trying to say it was 71 years old!
It looks like burn marks to me. Try sanding it by hand and see if it goes away. It can also be the resulted from taping if you used tape to mask those areas. If sanding doesn’t work, lightly dampen the entire surface to raise the grain and sand.. Hopefully if will come off.

-- earthartandfoods.com

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daviddoria

66 posts in 1404 days


#2 posted 07-23-2014 03:11 PM

mrjinx007 – I really don’t think it is burn marks because it goes up into the side and top of the rim of the tray as well where there wasn’t cutting with the same tool. I’ll take a better picture tonight to show that. I will also try what you said because it won’t hurt anything :)

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Nomad62

726 posts in 2424 days


#3 posted 07-23-2014 03:22 PM

I’d bet something (nails?) were in the tree, near where this piece came from.

-- Power tools put us ahead of the monkeys

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daviddoria

66 posts in 1404 days


#4 posted 07-23-2014 10:25 PM

mrjinx007 – I doubled checked, it definitely doesn’t sand out, even after raising the grain.

Attached is a picture of the reverse side of the tray. You can see that the discoloration goes all the way through.

Is anyone else on board with Nomad62’s theory that this is caused by some nails in the tree or something like that?

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papadan

1179 posts in 2834 days


#5 posted 07-23-2014 11:14 PM

Looks to me that the board was standing on that edge and absorbed moisture of some kind. Any smell when the stained areas are wet?

-- Carpenter assembles with hands, Designer builds with brains, Artist creates with heart!

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daviddoria

66 posts in 1404 days


#6 posted 07-24-2014 12:33 AM

papadan – I wet it and smelled it and it didn’t smell any different than non-stained parts of the board (when also wet).

Is there anything I can do to recover from this (I assume no one thinks it is good enough to be given as a gift in this state?)? I’d imagine if I oiled the tray it the discolored part would still not match much better.

View OldWrangler's profile

OldWrangler

731 posts in 1060 days


#7 posted 07-24-2014 12:39 AM

Try a light stain like a pecan or chestnut and see if the stain covers it, If it does, problem solved, if not the stain will sand out.

-- I am going to go stand outside so if anyone asks about me, tell them I'M OUTSTANDING!

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WDHLT15

1572 posts in 1942 days


#8 posted 07-24-2014 01:58 AM

Looks like gray stain to me. An enzymatic oxidation in the wood when the wood was green and the temp and humidity was very high, comes from drying too slow. See this a lot in maple and pecan. It can penetrate deeply into the wood.

-- Danny Located in Perry, GA. Forester. Wood-Mizer LT40HD35 Sawmill. Nyle L53 Dehumidification Kiln. hamsleyhardwood.com

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daviddoria

66 posts in 1404 days


#9 posted 07-24-2014 10:28 AM

Danny – Hm, I’ve never heard of that, but it’s the most plausible explanation I’ve heard so far I think :). In doing some quick research about it, I didn’t see anything that seemed to indicate that it can be fixed after the fact – would you agree with that? Is there some kind of chemical “bleach” that could remove something like this?

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WDHLT15

1572 posts in 1942 days


#10 posted 07-24-2014 12:03 PM

David,

I have never been able to remove it.

If you scroll down through these slides, there is some info about gray stain.

http://www.esf.edu/nekda/PastMeetingPrograms/2005-Spring/Stain%20Prevention-LanceJohnson.pdf

-- Danny Located in Perry, GA. Forester. Wood-Mizer LT40HD35 Sawmill. Nyle L53 Dehumidification Kiln. hamsleyhardwood.com

View ChuckV's profile

ChuckV

2880 posts in 2993 days


#11 posted 07-24-2014 12:29 PM

Maybe you can add to the splotch to make it look more like Elvis or a religious figure. Those are always popular.

-- “Big man, pig man, ha ha, charade you are.” ― R. Waters

View mahdee's profile

mahdee

3553 posts in 1233 days


#12 posted 07-24-2014 03:31 PM

I think WDHLT15 has given you the explanation you needed to go with the present. This is going to be difficult to cover up. Maybe ask Charles Neil’s opinion as to how to finish it.

-- earthartandfoods.com

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daviddoria

66 posts in 1404 days


#13 posted 07-24-2014 03:43 PM

Thanks for the information guys. I’ll probably just try a pretty dark “cherry” (the deep red) stain and see what happens.

View mudflap4869's profile

mudflap4869

1157 posts in 925 days


#14 posted 07-28-2014 09:41 AM

You might dampen it with peroxide and see if that will lighten the color.

-- Still trying to master kindling making

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daviddoria

66 posts in 1404 days


#15 posted 07-28-2014 12:20 PM

mudflap4869 – Do you mean a 2-component hydrogen peroxide/sodium hydroxide bleach? Either way, should I bother trying to get it only on the stained area? Or just apply it to the entire surface hoping that the bleached unstained wood will look more like the bleached stained area?

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