Carving pressure treated wood

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Carving pressure treated wood

Postby Rogue Booger » Fri Mar 02, 2012 7:04 pm

Are there any safety precautions to take while carving into pressure treated wood? I've read that there is arsenic used in the manufacturing process and I'm wondering if using pressurized wood should be avoided or is it safe to use?

Thanks for your input
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Re: Carving pressure treated wood

Postby ohiolyons » Fri Mar 02, 2012 8:20 pm

Unless it is old pressure treated wood the arsenic was replaced by copper sulfate years ago, but I think you find that they still recommend not breathing the dust. Beyond that you have to use special fasteners because the copper sulfate will corrode "normal" fasteners. Since routers make incredibly small wood particles/dust I would be concerned about the inhalation hazard. I would also be concerned about corrosion issues on the shark and surrounding metal surfaces too.

I'm not an Industrial Hygienist, but I would not even try. I have some composite decking materials (TREX) I have intended to cut for outside projects, but just haven't got around to it. I would recommend this over pressure treated products.

John
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Re: Carving pressure treated wood

Postby Rogue Booger » Sat Mar 03, 2012 7:40 am

Thanks John. I was going to carve house numbers in my mother-in-laws sign post, but I think I will instead carve on something else and attach it to the post.
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Re: Carving pressure treated wood

Postby Eagle55 » Mon Mar 05, 2012 3:17 pm

An idea would be to do just what you are thinking and making something to attach to it. I have been buying Corian scraps on ebay for doing house number signs. Haven't gotten started with the signs but have done a little bit of Corian work and it carves fantastically. You may or may not have wanted to leave the project with a little bit of a rustic look. You can do this by the design shape itself, particular lettering and material color selection. I have bought some Corian that looks almost like real ivory, and some that looks like marble. I think I would approach it like that before would risk the carving of treated woods. Although the chemicals used now are supposedly safer than the earlier methods, I have little confidence in the truthfulness of health hazard reporting on the part of government entities. Just look at the many times they have recanted their approval in the various medical, food and safety areas that they control. Of course we all know that the Federal government would never lie to us or mislead us or do anything to endanger our safety..... right??? :roll:
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Re: Carving pressure treated wood

Postby lsvien » Mon Mar 05, 2012 9:17 pm

I would agree with the other posts. Pressure treated wood is like it's name. It is injected with chemicals at high pressure to the point of refusal. The wood is super saturated and literally takes years for it to dry out. And in the drying process it twists and turns and darn near walks away from you. I always wear full protection when working with this nasty stuff. This wood will most likely move during carving as you release the internal pressure by removing wood. Since the wood will be above ground I would question the need for treated in the first place. A good rot resistance wood such as cedar, redwood or white oak when properly painted will last for decades. My mail box has a treated post in the ground and then the rest of the post above ground is designed larger to slip over the treated portion. It has been in place now for 10 years and not a hint of rot. The snow plow has taken it off twice and one drunk driver but no rot ;-) I like the idea of alternative materials and the concept of aged ivory sounds intriguing. My only caution would be to have high contrast especially at night if it's function is for emergency location and addressing.
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Re: Carving pressure treated wood

Postby Loudspeakerboy » Mon Mar 05, 2012 9:43 pm

If I may add.. MDF isn't much better.. ;)
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Re: Carving pressure treated wood

Postby Eagle55 » Tue Mar 06, 2012 1:20 am

Boooo on MDF HA HA HA. I hate that stuff. I'm not saying I never used it but with very few exceptions, never pay for it LOL Its easy to get the contrast with a light color Corian with black or dark paint. I have also acquired (ie swept up from a highway spill) a few handfuls of glass beads like they use to make painted highway lines retro-reflective. I have thought I would try to put the paint on heavy then dust these glass beads into the wet paint like the highway department does, and see what the outcome is. This could be done with Corian or wood. I will get plenty of pictures showing the outcome (good or bad) when I get started in that direction.
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