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Old 09-20-2013, 11:28 AM   #21
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It won't take that long, just boil it or soak it it in boiling water if its huge. Most of my pieces were literally just driftwood my brother found, hosed off and let sun dry. I scrubbed the loose dirt of then plopped them in the tank.
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Old 09-20-2013, 11:30 AM   #22
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It won't take that long, just boil it or soak it it in boiling water if its huge. Most of my pieces were literally just driftwood my brother found, hosed off and let sun dry. I scrubbed the loose dirt of then plopped them in the tank.
Do they still sink after you dry them?
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Old 09-20-2013, 01:27 PM   #23
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Depends on the wood. I've had some floaters, it might take a whole for them to sink, also expect some expansion in the wood. Or just screw or glue them to slate and pop them right in.
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Old 09-20-2013, 01:37 PM   #24
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Depends on the wood. I've had some floaters, it might take a whole for them to sink, also expect some expansion in the wood. Or just screw or glue them to slate and pop them right in.
Ok thanks!
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Old 09-20-2013, 01:39 PM   #25
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Since the topic has been brought up. There is a lake near my house that has some beautiful pieces in it. I have no idea what kind of wood it is but this wood has been in the water for at least the 8 years I have lived here. Actually it's a a couple of whole trees and they don't in the time I have lived here float. My hubby likes to go fishing there, and my kids every so often will break a piece of it off just to watch wood sink. Somebody said they were from a storm that knocked them down back in the 90's. Is this the type that would be safe to process and put in a tank?
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Old 09-20-2013, 01:51 PM   #26
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Since the topic has been brought up. There is a lake near my house that has some beautiful pieces in it. I have no idea what kind of wood it is but this wood has been in the water for at least the 8 years I have lived here. Actually it's a a couple of whole trees and they don't in the time I have lived here float. My hubby likes to go fishing there, and my kids every so often will break a piece of it off just to watch wood sink. Somebody said they were from a storm that knocked them down back in the 90's. Is this the type that would be safe to process and put in a tank?
If it has been in the water that long it should be fine to use!
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Old 09-20-2013, 05:25 PM   #27
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Yay!!!!!! I am going diftwood hunting tomorrow!!!
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Old 09-20-2013, 05:44 PM   #28
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I think any wood that's been in a lake long enough to sink on it's own is likely safe to use. I'd boil it if it was not too big, or soak in either salt water or bleach and water for a few weeks, which will kill anything that might be living in or on it, then give a it scrub to take off any loose splinters or crud that's on there. Rinse well, use double dechlorinator for a final rinse if bleach was used, just to be safe.

The main reason green woods are not good is the sap, which can contain any number of compounds that might be harmful in the confined space of a tank. In open water they get diluted so much, few issues arise for wild fish. Over the course of a year or so outside in all weather, sap is removed from the wood so it ceases to be an issue. I age any green wood I find for a year before I start soaking it.

Pines and other evergreens have some other compounds in their sap, resins and such, which can be toxic, and would no doubt be messy too, but they also get weathered out, especially with drowning for long periods. If you don't see any lumps of dried sap sticking to it, and it's sinking by itself, I would think it is ok to use it given the soaking or cooking first to get rid of any hitchhikers.

Even the bug spray would likely be removed by soaking. Check the label on the can to see what's in it. If it was pyrethrin based you have little to worry about. Pyrethrins degrades within days at most, especially in water.

If it was an organophosphate, those are much more persistent for a long time. I think most of them are banned now anyway, but I would not risk it if it was an organophosphate.

If it was something else, look up the chemical to see what it says about it's longevity in the environment or what it dissolves in. Even the stuff they spray to kill roaches in my apartment building loses its activity after a few months exposed to air indoors, and they tell you specifically not to wash it off for the first week or so.. because you ruin it's ability to work if you wash it off.

So soaking, with several changes of water, is likely to remove most of the toxins that might be present, though you might want to err on the side of longer than shorter soaking if it got sprayed with bug killer and you can't be sure what the active ingredient was.
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Old 09-20-2013, 05:53 PM   #29
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I think any wood that's been in a lake long enough to sink on it's own is likely safe to use. I'd boil it if it was not too big, or soak in either salt water or bleach and water for a few weeks, which will kill anything that might be living in or on it, then give a it scrub to take off any loose splinters or crud that's on there. Rinse well, use double dechlorinator for a final rinse if bleach was used, just to be safe.

The main reason green woods are not good is the sap, which can contain any number of compounds that might be harmful in the confined space of tank. In open water they get diluted so much, few issues arise for wild fish. Pines and other evergreens have some other compounds in their sap, resins and such, which can be toxic, but they get weathered out with time and also with drowning for long periods. If you don't see any lumps of dried sap sticking to it, and it's sinking by itself, I would think it is ok to use it given the soaking or cooking first to get rid of any hitchhikers,

Even the bug spray would likely be removed by prolonged soaking. Check the label on the can to see what's in it. If it was pyrethin based, that degrades within days at most, especially in water. If it was organophosphates, those persist and I would not risk it in that case. If it was something else, look up the chemical to see what it says about it's longevity in the environment. Even the stuff they spray to kill roaches in my apartment building lose their activity after a few months, and they tell you specifically not to wash it off for the first week or so.. because you ruin it's ability to work if you wash it off.

So soaking, with several changes of water, is likely to remove most of the toxins that might be present, though you might want to err on the side of longer than shorter soaking if it got sprayed with bug killer.
Thanks! I did toss that particular piece but I may try and find more
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Old 09-20-2013, 10:17 PM   #30
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Sometimes being a little suzie homemaker comes in handy I have a huge water bath canner, because well I can a lot at this time of the year. Mine is so big that it takes up 2-3 of my 5 burners That is how I boiled my mopani 4 hours boiling and it's never leached anything in my tank!
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Old 09-20-2013, 11:09 PM   #31
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Sometimes being a little suzie homemaker comes in handy I have a huge water bath canner, because well I can a lot at this time of the year. Mine is so big that it takes up 2-3 of my 5 burners That is how I boiled my mopani 4 hours boiling and it's never leached anything in my tank!
Haha awesome!
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