Preserving a Log


Have a neighbor that rescued a burned out tree.. what was left of it was about 8' long and came from a pretty large tree. It appears to be a Fir, judging from the grain. It has a lot of heavy charring on in as well as some rot and bug infestation.. most of which may be old.
Anyhow, he wants to use it at his cabin to attach a property sign to. I agreed it would look great. So, the question is..
How does he preserve this log? Doug fir will not hold up terribly long without something to stave off the elements and bugs. He doesn't want the "green" penta look.. but there must be some sort of penetrating liquid that can be applied that will, with repeated applications, sink into the wood.
I'd expect he would have to scrape/brush off all the heavy char.. as well as the areas that are rotted. Then what? What would be a good preservative? Something similar to, but hopefully better than, Thompson's WaterSeal?
Thanks for any pointers..
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Bill Splaine, Healdsburg, CA
Woodcarvings: www.picturetrail.com/chips
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Clean it up with an adze (or an ax) to bare, sound wood. Thin spar varnish 50% and apply 3 coats, 24 hours between coats. Do NOT place in ground contact - build a concrete footer (5 gal plastic can filled with concrete) raised 2 - 3 inches above ground level.
Recoated every couple of years, it'll last "forever".
I am assuming that the wood is relatively dry, if it's totally green, then you can expect warping and cracking, but it may not matter.
Regards.
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An interesting proposition. I was wondering if its feasible to clean it up and take it to a timber Company and get it tanalised. Don't know if they have this process in the US or, if you do, what it might cost. If it is feasible it may then even be possible to put directly into the ground.
Cheers Bill D New Zealand
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Epoxy? Look into West System products. There's a good boat restorer in Healdsburg, whose name escapes me right now, who could likely help you. He's a member of Sonoma County Woodworkers, if that helps any...
Patriarch
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