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  • Blue pine

    I'm always interested in adding more wood to my extensive collection and another blue would certainly be good. I have not seen or heard of Blue Pine before, but that doesn't mean anything, so I have done some investigative research. Blue Pine is an actual tree, like a Blue spruce, but blue pine lumber comes from yellow, or ponderosa pine (pretty sure those two are the same tree). The blue is caused by improper lumber storage, which basically means the lumber is moldy. Same basic thing as spalted maple is moldy wood. I always fear mold. I don't fear toxic chemicals that can be in a finish, because you can protect yourself during application, and then the spray dries, including any oversprays, thus becoming pretty much harmless. A moldy wood such as spalted maple is a different situation. You can wear a mask during cutting and sanding, you can wear gloves, change clothes, shower and whatever, but even with all that and the best dust collection, there will be residual sawdust somewhere in that shop that can invade your lungs. They say that if maple spalts and is then kiln dried afterwards, the mold is killed. But who can verify that for sure, considering mold can live in an asteroid hurling through space, or in the hottest pits of hell under the ocean ! And even if it is for sure true, who can verify that the wood was spalted before or after the kiln...because maple can be spalted after it is kiln dried if not stored properly. Anyhow....Blue pine is a different beast, the blue is a stain caused by the mold, the blue is not the actual mold. You could say the mold pee'd on the wood and it soaked in. If you have blue pine, get it damp, rub it with a finger, and if nothing comes off, it's not moldy. If it is moldy, take the wood outside with the planer and run it through a few times, that'll take care of the mold issue. My conclusion is that I'll try and track down a few of these boards and use them, but I'll still avoid spalted woods.
    http://www.handymanclub.com/IMG_Incl.../BluedPINE.pdf
    Jeff Powell

  • #2
    Interesting Jeff. I'm familiar with "blue" pine and thought it was a result of a fungal introduction during infestation by Mountain Pine beetles, not mold...

    Spores of these fungi contaminate the bodies of adult beetles and are introduced into the tree during attack. Fungi grow within the tree and assist the beetle in killing the tree. The fungi give a blue-gray appearance to the sapwood. http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/insect/05528.html
    ‎"Orphans are easier to ignore before you know their names. They're easier to ignore before you see their faces. It's easier to pretend they're not real before you hold them in your arms. But once you do, everything changes."

    D. Platt

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    • #3
      Thanx for the article. Hadn't found that one, nor ever heard of it. My articles make more sense as to the entire tree having blue through it, where as your article seems to suggest just the sapwood. I can only guess the beatle bores his hole and then moisture gets inside causing the mold, and then the mold "pee" soaks into the nearby sapwood. Either way, they both tie together and relate back to moisture/mold damage, so I think. My own articles that I read were simply piles of the pine laying in wet stacks. But I saw logs too where the ends became moldy and then blue for the same reasons. I guess if you want good pine, you have to get it cut and into the kiln right away...same as you do with sugar maple.

      I have heard of Pecan becoming a flourescent green color after sitting in a damp barn. I wanted to buy some, just to see it, but they called me back and said the owner destroyed it due to rot. So I guess I'll never know.
      Jeff Powell

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      • #4
        Originally posted by workin for wood
        Thanx for the article. Hadn't found that one, nor ever heard of it. My articles make more sense as to the entire tree having blue through it, where as your article seems to suggest just the sapwood.

        Uh....this is from YOUR posted article Jeff........I believe we are both talking about the same thing.......
        ________________________________
        Blue stain is a common cause for the discoloration of lumber. Certain dark colored microscopic fungi cause a bluish or grayish discoloration in the sapwood of the tree. However, not all blue stains are blue. Common stain shades can be blue to bluish black or gray to brown. Sometimes, the stain coloration in lumber may appear as red, yellow, orange, or purple.
        _________________________________
        ‎"Orphans are easier to ignore before you know their names. They're easier to ignore before you see their faces. It's easier to pretend they're not real before you hold them in your arms. But once you do, everything changes."

        D. Platt

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        • #5
          The blue in blue pine is from the Pine beetle it is just a reaction the wood has from the beetle boring thru it. It has nothing to do with moisture or mold.
          Bill



          Excalibur Ex-30

          www.redrocstudios.com

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          • #6
            yea, I guess I missed the bug part. There's a ton of articles out there proving I'm right and proving you are right too. The blue stain is caused by bugs, but there can be no bugs and it can be caused by too much sitting around in moisture...there's an article about huricane Katrina causing alot of blue pine and then there's another small article here http://www.bearcreeklumber.com/species/ppine.html
            where there's no bugs involve or sitting in water involved , but it's caused again by too much heat before drying. The world of wood is interesting indeed. Never hurts to learn something new. I do like it when nature stains/dyes it's own wood. Man made colors can never compare...or I just don't know how to apply them correctly!
            Jeff Powell

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            • #7
              Jeff,
              You said something about, "another blue wood", What is the first blue wood, besides blue pine, which I've never heard of before either. I've been looking for a blue colored wood forever. Can you give me wood names and possible sources of supply?
              JimSawyer
              Jim

              The limits of the imagination are imaginary.
              No task is too tedious for Art.
              Rock and Scroll

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              Featherwood Woodcrafts

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              • #8
                Jim, there's not many out there. I've had blue mahoe that is a nice dark blue, but sometimes it's more of a gray than a blue...depends where it comes from. Finding a supplier is impossible..I find it by keeping a constant eye on ebay and passing on the word to several suppliers. The best way is to go to Jamaica and pick whatever and however much you want. I ever get up enough extra cash...I'll be on the plane..but have to bring wife too, so that makes it even more expensive.
                Jeff Powell

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                • #9
                  Here's a place some of my turning buddies buy wood rom. You might find it interesting Jeff..... http://www.tswoods.com/
                  ‎"Orphans are easier to ignore before you know their names. They're easier to ignore before you see their faces. It's easier to pretend they're not real before you hold them in your arms. But once you do, everything changes."

                  D. Platt

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                  • #10
                    Awesome job bear..thanx. I've heard about this new chemical process but didn't know of anyone actually using it yet in the field. I bookmarked it to read tomorrow while wife is grocery shopping. Maybe they have the powder I can sprinkle around some of the junk tree's in my own yard to create my own colored lumber.
                    Jeff Powell

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