I still have a wrought iron magazine rack that I designed and made out of
1/8" thick x 1" wide band iron, rivited with 3/8" wide rivits pounded with a
ball peen hammer. I made that the same year.
Actually, just before we bought our first house 26 years ago I built her a
roll around Maple butcher block trimmed with Padauk. She prefers the one I
made in school. It is easer to rinse off/clean under the faucet.
Mon, Oct 15, 2007, 9:13pm (EDT+4) firstname.lastname@example.org (Leon)
<snip> I made a maple cutting board/block in 1969 in Jr. High shop
class. To this day my wife uses it every day and it is still just fine
Heh. Gotcha beat. Still got a solid cherry bookcase I had to
design, draft a plan of, then build, in shop, era '55-56.
"I'm an Igor, thur. We don't athk quethtionth."
"Really? Why not?"
"I don't know, thur. I didn't athk."
I ended up planing it, both to get rid of some deep cuts and because
of a couple cracks between boards were starting to widen. I had to
cut the board down to get it through the planer anyhow, I simply cut
it apart at the cracks, planed it to uniform thickness and reglued.
You can't tell there were ever any problems.
Same here. I've got a built-in cutting board in the kitchen that was
made sometime in the 50s and it does just fine with no or minimal
finish on it. About a year ago, I took it out and planed it to take
out some of the marks that couldn't be easily sanded out, reassembled
it and put it back without oil and it's doing just fine.
This thread comes along every few months, and I always get a chuckle.
Being ever the empiricist, I have observed the following:
I have made most of the turners, spoons, serving ware and utility
utensils we use in our very busy kitchen. There is an assortment of
woods, and each has been treated with different oils and oil/wax
blends. No difference in smell, texture, wear or anything else has
been noticed by myself or SO.
And then I think... If I am so scared of uncured oils penetrating my
treenware, why do I use them on my wok? Why do I use them for frying
and stirring? Surely turning a piece of fatty fish (salmon) fish
quick seared at high heat would encompass the fears of some here,
Or turning burgers in a teflon skillet with my white oak wide body
turner... wouldn't those fats work their way into the wood? One would
think. But so far, no problems. Wash, dry, put in rack. With about
25 or so turners, spoons, stirrers and testing spoons I don't have ANY
smells from anything on these utensils. They have been in use for
And what about that cutting board. After reading these threads I
think well... should I cut that damn brisket or dismantle those ribs
on that wooden thing or not? Hot grease and meat juice would
certainly penetrate the wood and not only smell to high heaven after
it goes rancid, but it could make any or all of sick.
Thankfully, years and years of cutting up raw meats, sausages, cooked
meats and vegetables of all types on wooden boards sealed with
whatever I have on hand when I think they need a little quick moisture
have resulted in no foul odors, no mildew, no sickness.
You should put whatever you want on your board, understanding that the
oils offer little or no protection. What is important is that you
clean them properly and allow them to dry thoroughly when changing
BTW, I learned from an amigo of mine that worked in a butcher shop for
years that they NEVER clean the butcher block with any kind of soap,
water, or detergent, nor do they put any finish on it.
After a hard day of hacking and chopping, they cleaned the block off
as best they could with a towel, scraped it with a cabinet scraper,
and scrubbed the daylights out of it with a lemon that was cut in
half, then mashed into kosher salt for grit.
My personal obervation after sawing into a board with test oils on
them is that while they make make the wood more attractive, they
coatings don't do much on cutting boards or tools.
I do like the walnut oils on bowls, etc. that can have liquid collect
in the bottom. Mike Mahoney makes a special curing walnut oil for
bowls that is supposed to be great, and that should work as well as
anything else for light wood protection.
Just my 0.02.
Actually, some folks have run an entirely new battery of tests that
indicate that the old woodies are safer for the kitchen than plastic
due to the grooves left by a sharp knife. With a plastic board, the
soft plastic simply rolls over on either side of the groove left when
cutting. Examination of my own polyprop boards revealed this scratchy
feeling surface. On a wood board, cutting raises the cut grain, and
the raised/severed fibers are knocked, rubbed, flecked, or washed off,
leaving the clean groove behind with nothing to hold the bacteria.
I willingly admit that in practical application the difference in the
two may not amount to a fart in a tornado, but no one likes facts like
I personally like the wooden cutting boards as their bulk an weight
make them better suited to my cutting style, and while it may be my
imagination, it seems my knives stay sharper longer on the wood
On Wed, 17 Oct 2007 01:40:18 -0700, " email@example.com"
I remember reading some of those studies years ago. University of
Wisconsin comes to mind, but memory may have faded.
Conclusion was that while all cutting boards can have bacteria after
use, the manmade materials would continue to allow bacteria growth,
while something about wood inhibits the growth and time would take
care of any residual critters.
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