Toxic?

Hello all,
Since I haven't seen any posts for almost a month, I thought I'd test post with a somewhat-woodworking-related post.
In building a small hobby box, I was routing a narrow rabbet in what I thought was small cut-off of clear fir from a previous project. Some of the sawdust blew into my face. Within seconds it felt like my mustache was on fire, where the dust mixed with sweat. I cleaned it out well but the burning sensation took over an hour to fade. Over the next few days I had blistered like chemical burns I have had before, but just in the middle of my mustache.
The wood itself appears very light in color with hardly any grain visible. It is very soft, a little harder than spruce, but it holds an edge as well as maple. It has no discernable odor (or my sniffer is shot).
I cannot find any other scraps with this appearance and I am stumped on where it came from and what it is. I have some mahogany, eucalytus, cedar, fir, SYP, maple, and brazilian rosewood in the shop, but again it does not look exactly like any of these. And I've been covered in sawdust from all of it at some point, without any similar reaction.
Has anyone else had any skin reactions to particular woods? Did I get a piece of chemically treated wood?
Thanks! Scott
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On Wed, 16 Sep 2015 09:30:39 -0400

knowing nothing about the origin makes it real hard to tell and even if you know a little about it that might not be enough
i have some wood that sounds like this and i do not know the species i rescued it from the dumpster
i am pretty sure that it is tropical and i have not had any sawdust from it on my face
some of this wood has stain on it and some of the edges have glue remnants
i think this wood was from a mass market cheap piece of furniture like a wardrobe or bench seat
this wood could be from china but china imports massive raw materials from all over so it could be from anywhere
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wrote:

Mimosa aside from being a weed is very high on the toxic scale.
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On 9/16/2015 9:30 AM, ScottWW wrote:

I don't know if this is the wood that you were using but my wife is allergic to Cedar. We first became aware of this one Christmas when we decided a cedar tree would be better that the white pine or spruce we normally get. By New Years when we take our tree down we were quite aware of the problem, and had isolated it to the tree.
You may check it if you can find some cedar and carefully test it. If you are allergic, the next time time you unknowingly get involved with it, it could be much worse, and life threatening.
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On 9/16/2015 3:57 PM, Keith Nuttle wrote:

Central Texas is famous for "cedar fever".
Never been one to be prone to allergies, even got a touch of it last year myself on a trip to Austin.
The older you get ...
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http://www.cs.rochester.edu/u/roche/rec.wood.misc/wood.toxic
Rosewoods are dangerous in general. They are rated quad "+" meaning Protect yourself when drilling / turning and sanding.....
Many woods have various poison elements. If the site isn't available I can provide more info.
Martin
On 9/16/2015 8:30 AM, ScottWW wrote:

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On Wednesday, September 16, 2015 at 8:57:25 PM UTC-5, Martin Eastburn wrote :

The only wood I've ever had adverse reactions to was catalpa - salvaged a l og, had it milled. It's a weak lumber, very soft, porous, but has a nice brown color. Made a few small projects: For me, the sawdust caused a bur ning sensation of the eyes, nose and throat. Hands-on handling or that dir ect contact had no ill effects. I haven't researched catalpa's toxicity.
I'm at a loss to proffer a definitive cause for OP's reactions.
Sonny
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Catalpa around here is for fishing 'worms' it attracts caterpillars.... Tent type.
The other use is hand carving in blocks. It is so soft and pure it carves easily to learn with or make a few.
I'm in East Texas
On 9/17/2015 7:40 AM, Sonny wrote:

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I have a bit of COPD and my pulmonologist, who knows I like to make sawdust, has instructed me to stay far away from cedar.
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On Thursday, September 17, 2015 at 10:25:46 PM UTC-5, Martin Eastburn wrote :

Martin, I'd thought you were in the New Orleans area. Must be another Mar tin, there.


Yeah, I recall collecting (long ago) catalpa worms for fishing. Hardly an y more trees, around here, anymore, for the adult moths to lay their eggs, hence fewer trees have worms, these days. Seems, individual trees are so far apart from each other, the moths don't/can't find the isolated trees, f or laying their eggs. Also, insecticide usage plays a part in reducing th e number of adult moths.
Sonny
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I had two. One was blown over onto the house so it had to go. The other was smashed up in an ice storm. So a friend got the wood from one of them. I could use it now - starting to get into carving.
There are a number of Martin names - first and last. Lions Lair is the name of our homestead. :-) It was the name of the Student Union building at the university we both graduated from almost 50 years ago.
Martin
On 9/18/2015 9:42 AM, Sonny wrote:

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Much more up-to-date chart here:
http://www.wood-database.com/wood-articles/wood-allergies-and-toxicity/
FWIW, I doubt the problem here is a rosewood, since the OP said the wood in question is "very light in color with hardly any grain", and that doesn't come close to any rosewood, all of which are dark and have distinct grain.
John
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