Sunday, September 12, 2010

FAQ - Check here first

I'll keep adding to this file as I get questions and answers

Why Beetle Kill?

It’s a Lemonade out of Lemons sort of solution.

No one likes the idea that Colorado is now covered with a blanket of brown trees and it offends me even more when those trees are chipped or turned into firewood – the lowest value product. Why not get a long-lasting, higher value use out of these trees? Besides, the Beetle Kill Blue has a look not seen in almost any other wood.

Why is the Beetle Kill lumber blue?

The blue color in the wood results from a blue stain fungus the bark beetles carry into the trees. The fungus is harmless to humans, pets and livestock and does not affect the structural integrity or strength of the wood at all. It does however, kill the infected trees, according a forestry expert. Other colors are created by stresses on the tree when they are growing or minerals in the soil.

How long will my chair last?

Depends. Beetle kill is a softwood and does need to be protected – paint, stain, UV protectant annually. Don’t leave your furniture out in a snow bank all winter and not expect it to look a bit tatty. I use waterproof glues and coated screws to help the chairs last as long as possible.

What about hardwoods?

There are a lot of ‘sustainability’ arguments surrounding the use of hardwoods among woodworkers – are we harvesting the last tree to make this chair? I try to use wood resources that are sustainable and local.

I work with a Boulder County sawmill which deals exclusively with salvage timber – trees that are being cut down because of disease or development that would otherwise end up in the landfill. I love working with hardwoods, but I also want to ensure that there will be wood available for my next project.
What’s a Maloof finish?

Sam Maloof was one of America’s finest furniture makers and designers, and like most woodworkers, he wasn’t thrilled with the finishing process. His finish or oil - 1/3 linseed oil, 1/3 boiled tung oil and 1/3 satin urethane – is easy to apply, allows the natural color of the wood to come out and is non-toxic. I then cover all of my outside furniture with a UV inhibitor to protect the pieces from the intense UV we have in Colorado.

Can you make me a…?

I can make just about anything out of wood. Just ask.

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