rotton tree stump...


Great question huh? In fact, I need to preserve this half way rotten stump for a possible piece of art to be mounted on top of it. (On a golf course) It is 3' in diameter at the base, 4' tall, but has a rotted center that you could fit a bowling ball into. We are planning a very large and expensive wood carving to be mounted on top of this stump. Will filling the rotten middle with cement stop the rotting process for at least a few years? If you can answer that one, your good.
Thanks, Jim
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Jim Wild wrote:

No, if anything it will exacerbate the problem -- w/ just a hole, at least there's air movement to let it dry...w/ the concrete filling it in, you've just make a closed container that will keep it perpetually damp.
What kind of tree was it? Various specie are markedly different wrt their weathering properties.
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On Mon, 23 May 2005 20:02:44 -0400, JR snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (Jim Wild) wrote:

Filling with concrete will make it rot faster, since it will hold more moisture in the center. I think the only way to preserve it would be to somehow saturate the wood with some sort of sealer/hardener. If it were going into an indoor environment it might be pretty straightforward, but outdoors (and I assume still rooted) you have a real challenge on your hands.
I would start by removing as much of the rotted wood as possible then start slopping Thompsons on it inside and out until it won't soak up any more.
Realize that no matter what you do you are probably only looking at a solution that will last a half-dozen years or so.
-- "We need to make a sacrifice to the gods, find me a young virgin... oh, and bring something to kill"
Tim Douglass
http://www.DouglassClan.com
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You might check with an exterminator- he might be able to dump a bunch of chemicals in the stump that would kill off any bugs, bacteria or fungus.
Remember, wood rots because something is eating it. Moisture alone generally does not destroy wood. This is why pressure treated lumber doesn't rot.

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"Jim Wild" wrote:

Had a neighbor who had a large beech tree stump with a serious rot problem.
Dug out all the rot and filled with a motor mix, then built about a 10 ft dia table top on top of it for a picnic table.
Got about 10 years out of it.
Since this is a golf course, my first thought would be a heart to heart with an arborist and go from there.
Lew
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Jim, My suggestion would be to grind the stump out entirely. Since it is already very rotton, it will never provide a way to get something solid to put a very large and expensive wood carving on. A concrete footing, then metal, stone, or even stained and stamped or textured concrete. Do it right the first time so you don't have to do it over. robo hippy
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Import a new one. Chuck the old one, then find a stump from a tree that was taken down. Cut off the roots, then secure the stump over some steel spikes in the ground. Then coat the stump with several gallons of preservative and mount your carving.
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I think this is the right answer. I'd go one step further and take the new stump and soak it in preservative rather than just coating ("painting"?) it. I have a couple of pine tree stumps that I did this to, and keep them in the garden to try and maintain a natural appearance. Move 'em around sometimes if the adjacent bushes get too big and hide the effect.
I've also taken 3-4" slabs of tree trunk, soaked them in preservative, and used them as stepping stones. Even lying on the ground in a wet location, they've lasted for six years so far, with no apparent deterioration.
Good luck -- regards --
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Check out Lee Valley Tools. I know they still sell PEG - it is used as a stabilizer strengthener for some wood projects. The used to sell a 2 part product - I think a thin epoxy - that was specifically designed for stabilizing rotting wood - window frames, etc. Their customer service people are generally very helpful, both by phone & by email. Bruce

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Hello I have a termite exterminators licences. you can go to a do it yourself store. and find tim-bor it treats wood decay fungi and termites. good wood preservitive. it has a borate in it http://www.bugspray.com/catalog/products/page51.html
but if as you said a large expensive object will sit on this rotten stump. i'd grind it out and put in a proper pedestal.
larry t

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On Mon, 23 May 2005 20:02:44 -0400, JR snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (Jim Wild) wrote:

Check out the Rot Doctor ( http://www.rotdoctor.com/ ) They make a variety of products to stop rot and preserve wood. I used a couple of their products on a rotten boat transom and it worked great. Also treated a piece of plywood for an outdoor table top at the deer camp and it's still holding up after about 4 years.They are very helpful and will walk you through any problem you may have. Good luck.
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How about cyanoacrylates? AKA super glue. I know people use them for small repairs. Is this stuff available by the gallon? http://www.leevalley.com/wood/page.aspx?c=1&cat=1,110&pB966
What about that clear plastic stuff you sometimes see on bar tops (you know, where they embed coins in and stuff) http://www.woodcraft.com/family.aspx?familyidA40
What about epoxy? http://www.leevalley.com/wood/page.aspx?c=1&p 016&cat=1,110,42965&ap=1
Combination of cyanoacrylates first then epoxy or bar top stuff? Basically encase the thing in plastic. After you remove the active fungus and such.

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If you coat the outside of the existing stump, no matter how thickly or with what material, the wood can still rot out. Assuming the roots are still in the ground, the bacteria and fungi can go up into the stump from the roots, eventually leaving you with a hollow cast of your stump. If it were up to me, I would get some kind of nice, durable, metal and concrete stand. If you really must have your old-stump look, though, I guess I would recommend a totally new stump also, that has been thoroughly treated on all surfaces, and sunk into concrete in the ground (with some supporting posts or spikes from underneath).
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