Small gloat


When I got home from work yesterday there was a message waiting for me from a former coworker. She had moved into 1906 home and has been doing renovations. There was a pile of 100 year old thick pine t&g panelling (8" to 10" wide) and 2x4s (full dimension) waiting for me in the back. Some is rough because it was on the outside of the wall, inside the bricks. The inside boards are smoother. I hitched up the trailer and told my son to come along to pick up some wood for his new bed.
The renovators were going to just chuck it in the landfill and they were pretty rough with it. They expressed surprise when my friend said she wanted to keep it. So there is lots of splitting. Some boards have dry rot, so I'm a bit concerned about the overall quality. But I'm sure I've got enough to make a nice headboard for my son (maybe both sons), and the 2x4s will probably turn into nice corner posts. It's to be a captain's bed but I don't think there'll be enough for the drawers, too.
I've never worked with wood like this before, so any advice you have would be appreciated. At the moment I'm afraid to plane it by machine for fear of knicking the blades with bits of old nails ro grit from the driveway where it was "stacked". I'm assuming the belt sander will work. Am I in for an ordeal?
Anyhow, I'm finishing up a couple of other projects first but I figured I'd better pounce on this opportunity.
- Owen -
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Owen -
First get a small metal detector and find the nails and bits of metal, when you get a clear board, you will be fine to plane it. Check both sides. I use chalk to mark the metal locations and then dig them out.
Second - remember much of this older growth lumber, It is harder than most of the pine you deal with, assume it works like hardwood, until is shows otherwise.
Third - have fun, much of the splitting and other problems can be dealt with by cutting down the boards to smaller sizes.
I think you have a real find, good luck.
Doug
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Doug - you forgot the standard number four:
Four - We all hate you!
This kind of lumber often has personality that cannot be approached in a lumber yard or mill.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Sat, 15 Jul 2006 11:45:28 -0400, Doug Houseman

Or, if you have one, a belt sander will do the trick nicely as well. If not, you can clean the surface with a random orbital sander to remove the grit and then pull the visible nails- I don't have a metal detector, but this technique has worked fine for me in the past. Giving it a quick cleanup with the sander makes finding nails and staples much easier.

Second that one- it's amazing how much tougher the old stuff is than the standard lumber around today. Some of that old pine works like soft maple.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Sat, 15 Jul 2006 10:27:24 -0400, "Owen Lawrence"

A massive house on the ocean here was renovated some years ago. I did some of the trim inside and was offered a huge pile of wood similar to what you have there. It was full of nails, some rusted and broken off inside, and some where dry rot had made the nail hole quite large, etc. I was not interested because I only burn hardwood at home...:) However, one of the framers took it. We (finish carpenters) thought he was wasting his time. About a year later he invited us to his *shop*. He did not have any machinery, just hand tools. He had built 3 pieces of dining room furniture from the wood and I must say I was impressed. He had allowed all the old nail holes and defects to become featurtes. When stained the defects became darker, etc. Anyway, very difficult to put into words but I was amazed at what he had done with all that old wood. He never worried about his machinery because he did not use any.
Good Luck, J
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

Thanks All for the pointers and encouragement. I've been thinking of how I might leave in these "features". I've never built anything rustic looking, but I do like the rustic look. If I can't make the wood work on its own then I may do some inlays to cover up the worst offenders. But since I'm not actually handling the wood at the moment it isn't speaking to me yet. I'll do my best to go with the flow, and let the final design emerge organically rather than try to impose one.
I've got two more coats of finish to apply to my current major project, then two small boxes to finish up, and then I'll have at 'em. I'm looking forward to it!
- Owen -
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Owen Lawrence wrote:

I work with old wood a bit. Found that attacking it with the vacuum, a belt sander, and the vacuum again does the most good. If you have access to a metal detector, so much the better. Have fun.     mahalo,     jo4hn
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.