preserving driftwood from rotting/decay/mold

Submitted by Dionne on 8/24/06 at 2:36 PM. ( )

I have a wide selection of river driftwood, various sizes, I am looking for a way, after pressure washing it, to condition/preserve it for outdoor/indoor use. Any tips?

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This response submitted by George on 8/24/06 at 3:19 PM. ( )

Not much you can do. All dead wood decays except those that are rot resistant. Those are the cedars, the sassafras, and the locust. A few others included, I'm sure. The "heartwood" of conifers is usually resistant to rot as it's so concentrated and pitch filled that it resists insects. The softer woods such as pine,balsa, and hemlock go fast. The hardwoods of oak, hickory, maple, beech, and ash take a little longer but still decay. Pressure treating it with chemicals will extend that time but isn't very cost effective. If you read Phil Soucy's post about looking for a "special tree" for his diorama, that's a prime example of the wood that you'll need to last. Most "driftwood" doesn't match that and it's why the cedar slabs that have been rock tumbled tend to be bigger money makers.

run it by

This response submitted by Two Feathers on 8/24/06 at 8:47 PM. ( )

a few of your local antique dealers that restore their own stuff and see if they can help, an old friend of mine used to soak the bottoms of old table legs with a mixture of polyurethane and thinners and they would harden up and be able to be refinished to look really nice. Good Luck


This response submitted by daniel on 8/25/06 at 5:43 AM. ( )

strange ive never seen a piece of rotten drift wood on the beach salt water must have something to do with it but i suppose you would have to soak for a long time good luck

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