Cutting Board Questions

Hi All, I've recently come into possession of a bunch of Ash (it seems Sears packs their snowthrowers in boxes reinforced with 1 X 2 Ash). I figure it would make good material for cutting boards. My questions are what's a standard size (if there is one) for a cutting board and what do you finish them with?
TIA Kevin Daly http://hometown.aol.com/kdaly10475/page1.html Kevin Daly Mattatuck Astronomical Society http://hometown.aol.com/kdaly10475/index.html
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There are many sizes, shapes etc. Just make it big enough for your needs :) I finish them with non-toxic mineral oil. -- Regards,
Dean Bielanowski Editor, Online Tool Reviews http://www.onlinetoolreviews.com Over 60 woodworking product reviews online! ------------------------------------------------------------ Latest 6 Reviews: - Festool CT22E Dust Extractor - Fasco GN-40A Brad Nailer - Taunton's Complete Illustrated Guide to Furniture & Cabinet Construction - Milescraft SignCrafter - Ryobi EMS1830SCL 12" SCMS - Bessey K-Body Clamps ------------------------------------------------------------
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On 15 Nov 2004 11:59:01 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@aol.comnospam (Kevin Daly) wrote:

Check out a baking catalog and note the dimensions in there for cutting boards and pastry boards. Use mineral oil. Lay it on until it can't absorb any more and then wipe it off.
Thunder
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Did you miss the recent thread of cutting boards? Covers finishes, grooves etc.
rhg
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Apparently I did. I did a google search and received 1740 articles on cutting boards. I figured it would be quicker to just ask. :)
Kevin Daly http://hometown.aol.com/kdaly10475/page1.html
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Did you miss the recent thread of cutting boards? Covers finishes, grooves etc.
rhg
Kevin Daly wrote:

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There are really no standar sizes. Common sizes are 9x12, 10x14, 12x12, 12x18.
Regarding finish, you will find some controversy around her regarding that. I recomend mineral oil. You can buy "wood block" oil at culinary shops like Williams Sonoma or Crate and Barrel. Some of these formulas include other items, such as wax or other oils.
The mineral oil does not spoil or go rancid as food oils will. It is essentially used to keep moisture and food based oild from getting into the wood.
Most mfg's have a little idiom that says apply it once a day for a week, once a week for a month and once a month for a year. That's about right I guess. Once you have it pretty well penetrated, just alwasy rince it with hot water and just a bit of soap and let it air dry well. When it looks a dry (whitish) hit it with a fresh slap of oil.
P.S. You can also get pure mineral oil in some drug stores, they sell it as a laxative. It will cots about $2.00 for what would cost about $20 at a culinary shop.
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On 15 Nov 2004 11:59:01 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@aol.comnospam (Kevin Daly) wrote:

Cutting boards come in all sizes. I guess when it gets too small, it becomes a cheese board. A dimension of 18x9" sounds about right, but I'd figure out where it will be stored before making one. Finish with mineral oil.
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On 15 Nov 2004 11:59:01 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@aol.comnospam (Kevin Daly) wrote:

(For English Fraxinus excelsior anyway), ash is a lousy wood for kitchenware. It's highly ring porous, so you're going to make a bug factory with it.
I really like ash, but I wouldn't use it for a cutting board. Maybe just for bread, but certainly not anything wet, damp, or likely to encourage bacterial growth. I have made a knife block from it, and I'd happily make something like a breadbin.
--
Smert' spamionam

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Thanks for the heads-up on the ash. I figure being as hard as it is it would've worked. Oh well, guess I'll make an ash coffee table or something.
Kevin Daly http://hometown.aol.com/kdaly10475/page1.html
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Nutshell, don't use woods with open pores or of splintery habit. Avoid tropical stuff or wood known for its durability - what you smell is insecticide.
Make two boards, of distinctive appearance. Use one for raw food, one for food which will be cooked, and avoid cross-contamination and the Pepto. Best to leave them unfinished, because what kills the bacteria is the detergent or bleach in your wipe, and if it has to emulsify a bunch of mineral oil to get to where it can emulsify them, it'll take a while. If you want "pretty," use a curing oil like walnut, or a thinned varnish which you can wipe off the surface after it's penetrated. Sort of a "Danish oil" treatment. It'll help reject water without harboring, or collecting dirt like non-curing oils.

something.
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Just one man's opinion. I use cherry because I like the color. I think you can use anything if you use something to seal the pores in the wood. You could use cyanoacrylate if you wanted to spend some bucks. If you use alkyd, poly or whatever, thinned so it really soaks in, and keep applying until it won't take any more and let it dry, I think you can render a board, any board, more or less impervious to meat juice. Turners use PEG to reduce shrinkage, impregnating the wood with the stuff. Do the same thing with a resin. Maybe this qualifies as a plastic block with wood embedded in it but it still looks pretty much like native wood. I'm not talking about casing wood in a plastic coat such as applying thick poly varnish to the surface. I'm talking about saturating (with thin stuff) and wiping off excess until the wood won't take any more. I'm talking about several applications with polymerization in between. Not weeks or months but several days. Give it a try. How much have you got wrapped up in enough ash for a cutting board?
bob g.
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