Red Oak in cutting board?

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Ive read that Red Oak is not recommend for cutting boards due to its open grain and holding food that grows bacteria.
If one was to make a butcher block cutting board, using the end grain of Red Oak do you think that would be ok?
Seems to me the end grain is very tight and hard and might work ok.
I have a lot of scrap that would be nice to use for making some xmas gifts.
Any thoughts?
thanks!
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Ive read that Red Oak is not recommend for cutting boards due to its open grain and holding food that grows bacteria.
If one was to make a butcher block cutting board, using the end grain of Red Oak do you think that would be ok?
Seems to me the end grain is very tight and hard and might work ok.
I have a lot of scrap that would be nice to use for making some xmas gifts.
Any thoughts?
thanks!
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How about using it for "bread boards?" Even the end grain is going to be awfully porous, and will provide an opportunity for pieces of food to shelter and breed bacteria, to be killed by the tannic acid.
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I agree with George. They should be fine for bread only. No meat - ever! Otherwise, as others have said, choose a different wood or a different gift project.

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An end grain butcher block from Red Oak would be potentially dangerous for bacterial growth. The end grain of R. Oak is like open straws which wick and hold whatever food liquids you put on there. BTW, the reason (at least in part) that Oak splits so easily is due to the split easily following the open straws. Red Oak would be OK for a dry (bread) cutting board but I wouldn't use it at all for wet food prep.
Most butcher blocks are Hard Maple or Beech - the end grain is closed and the wood is quite durable - much more so than Red Oak.
--
Owen Lowe
The Fly-by-Night Copper Company
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good inputs. Thank you. I wont be using oak the. What is BLO product mentioned?
thanks again
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| good inputs. Thank you. I wont be using oak the. What is BLO | product mentioned? | | thanks again |
BLO = Boiled Linseed Oil
Not sure but I do not think it is too good for cutting boards either.
BTB my cutting board is made out of plywood. Think I need to replace it because the iner plys are beginning to show. Only 25 years of hacking and slicing on it . Hasn't killed me yet.
-- PDQ
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. BTW, the reason

Well, I'd have to say that the large ray figure, which provides a natural cleavage point, is more important in ease of splitting, especially radially. If you're hacking round-and-round like you do for elm, along annual rings, it's a different matter.
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I am currently using it as a chopping board for all food types. . . . but I always wash it in the dishwasher. ( it warped a few time but its flat now Do you think the hot temperature of the washer is enough to kill the bacteria?
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The caustic detergent sure it.
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Red oak makes nice gifts. Trivets, boxes, but not cutting boards.
Cut a strip of the oak about 6" long and put it in water. Suck on it like a straw. Now think about chicken juice on the cutting board.
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An end grain butcher block from Red Oak would be potentially dangerous for bacterial growth. The end grain of R. Oak is like open straws which wick and hold whatever food liquids you put on there. BTW, the reason (at least in part) that Oak splits so easily is due to the split easily following the open straws. Red Oak would be OK for a dry (bread) cutting board but I wouldn't use it at all for wet food prep.
Most butcher blocks are Hard Maple or Beech - the end grain is closed and the wood is quite durable - much more so than Red Oak.
--
Owen Lowe
The Fly-by-Night Copper Company
  Click to see the full signature.
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Looks like I am in a minority. I have made several cutting boards by raiding the scrap pile and laminating Red Oak, White Oak, Ash, Maple and Walnut. I keep ours pretty well sealed with mineral oil or cooking oil. No one has died yet.
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rkruz wrote:

You obviously don't believe what you read ________________

Sure, it will be fine as long as you don't mind meat juice soaking in and turning putrid. _________________

Try varnishing it and see how tight it is. ____________________

Use another wood.
-- dadiOH ____________________________
dadiOH's dandies v3.06... ...a help file of info about MP3s, recording from LP/cassette and tips & tricks on this and that. Get it at http://mysite.verizon.net/xico
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If you really want to use red oak, make sure you saturate it with LBO. That ought to take care of it.
LBO is toxic? Since when?
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toller wrote:

LBO?
Dave
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| toller wrote: | | > If you really want to use red oak, make sure you saturate it with LBO. That | > ought to take care of it. | > | > LBO is toxic? Since when? | > | > | LBO? | | Dave
Liquor Board of Ontario???
Pretty sure his fingers got the letters mixed -- BLO.
-- PDQ
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| toller wrote: | | > If you really want to use red oak, make sure you saturate it with LBO. That | > ought to take care of it. | > | > LBO is toxic? Since when? | > | > | LBO? | | Dave
Liquor Board of Ontario???
Pretty sure his fingers got the letters mixed -- BLO.
-Uh yeh, BLO; thanks for not being too sarcastic.
-Did you hear about the dyslexic agnostic? -He is not sure if dogs exist.
--
PDQ



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PDQ wrote:

*****************************
I think you mean the Elsie Bow.
-- Will R. Jewel Boxes and Wood Art http://woodwork.pmccl.com The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it. George Bernard Shaw
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You read correctly. Apparently you do not believe that, for some reason?

NO. End grain is the _worst_possible_ surface of red oak to expose to liquids. It's like a soda straw - *very* porous. Much more so on the end grain than on face or edge grain.

Not on red oak, it's not. Put some varnish on, and you'll see just how tight it isn't. OTOH, if the piece you have *is* tight... it's not red oak.

Bread boards, trivets... but nothing that will come in contact with liquid.
Not only do the open pores in red oak provide wonderful breeding grounds for bacteria... there's another reason for not using red oak on a cutting board. Spit on it. Then smell it. Break a clean piece off, and chew it up. Do you *really* want that odor, that flavor, in your food?
Note that if the odor and/or flavor are pleasant, then what you have is *not* red oak. Moist *white* oak smells like vanilla and fresh toast. Moist *red* oak smells like cat urine.
--
Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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