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Author Topic: 'Safe' Woods and ones to avoid  (Read 31783 times)

Offline clownman

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'Safe' Woods and ones to avoid
« on: September 21, 2010, 09:06:36 pm »
Well I thought I should do a bit of digging and see if I could try and build a list of what wood's safe and what's not. After hours of trawling Ive found a lot of differing species of wood from various sources.  *fool*
I have not yet tried any of these, so please don't think because theyre on the safe list they're totally safe.

So the concensus on the info on safe wood is:
Sycamore...
Apple, bark on ok
Pear
Cherry
Fruit wood should be dried thoroughly because of the sugary sap

Heather wood, the twiggy bits great for nano tanks
Oak, ok with bark
Beech
Hawthorn
Birch must be totally dry (no sap) and free of bark because it contains pitch
eucalyptus check this as some leach oil for a long time
cork bark

Maybe's - probably avoid
Maple is contentious… some say yes, some say no, so probably avoid it
Hazel - mixed opinions on this one,

Definate no's are:
PINE (that's where turps comes from)
YEW, totally toxic.
lilac, seeds are poisonous,
ivy poisonous
Grape rots very quickly
Cedar
Cypress
Spruce
(Avoid anything with a cone on it!)
Sumac
Walnut (has been known to kill cattle so a few tetra's aint gonna last long)
Horse chestnut - conkers are poisonous when young and fresh

There are a huge amount of documented ways to prep it too. The safest is the old favourite… boil it for a few hours or more.
What about bigger pieces that are impossible to boil…Some bake them in the oven, some strip the bark and give it a pour over with boiling water.
Nothing definative really, so I would suggest, be safe where possible and boil it.

No mention of willow yet  *crazy*

I'll keep looking, or if anyone has any experience with any of the ones mentioned please add to the list
yep… im like a bad smell

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    Offline Catzilla

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    Re: 'Safe' Woods and ones to avoid
    « Reply #1 on: September 23, 2010, 12:40:16 pm »
    I know it's not technically a wood, but I have seen coconut shells used before. Lovely ones with mosses growing on them!

    What thoughts do people have on those? Do they need to be boiled too?

    Offline clownman

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    Re: 'Safe' Woods and ones to avoid
    « Reply #2 on: September 23, 2010, 12:49:06 pm »
    I use them, hair on… apisto's love them with an 'eye' knocked out of the top.
    yes I would recommend boiling them, you never know what could have got on them before they reach us.
    yep… im like a bad smell

    Offline Adam

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    • Ka' Poww
    Re: 'Safe' Woods and ones to avoid
    « Reply #3 on: September 23, 2010, 12:50:42 pm »
    Nice one Cman!

    Catzilla - Coconut shells are perfectly fine, they're quite often used as spawning caves for kribensis. The bare minimum you should do to prepare is make sure its totally free of flesh and give it a quick boil. They will release tannins though and if you don't want them boil them until the waters clear.
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    Offline Adam

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    • Ka' Poww
    Re: 'Safe' Woods and ones to avoid
    « Reply #4 on: September 23, 2010, 12:51:32 pm »
    Just thought I'll add, bamboo shoots are safe and you can get them in loads of sizes.
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    Offline clownman

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    Re: 'Safe' Woods and ones to avoid
    « Reply #5 on: September 23, 2010, 12:53:25 pm »
    Oh i forgot bamboo adam… and ive even used that  *crazy*
    yep… im like a bad smell

    Offline Catzilla

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    Re: 'Safe' Woods and ones to avoid
    « Reply #6 on: September 23, 2010, 01:03:29 pm »
    Oh, I'm going to get some coconuts! Better get the stewing pan out ;)

    Bamboo sounds interesting. I like the idea of the straight lines it'll make...

    Offline ynotfish

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    Re: 'Safe' Woods and ones to avoid
    « Reply #7 on: September 23, 2010, 01:16:02 pm »
    One way of handling them is to let them dry out over a long time (finding them in the woods can shorten this process) and then remove any obviously dodgy bits, a quick boil and in the tank with 'em!
    Greetings from T o n y   *2116*
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    Offline Catzilla

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    Re: 'Safe' Woods and ones to avoid
    « Reply #8 on: September 23, 2010, 02:12:58 pm »
    I've just been to the local supermarket, and bought some coconuts. They're on offer! 2 for £1.
    The sawing them in 2, was hard. Very tough shells! and now I'm stuck with all this coconut flesh. It's harder to remove than I thought. Maybe if I leave it a day the flesh will dry out and come free from the shell easier? Or has anyone got a fool proof tip?

    Offline Wint3rz

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    Re: 'Safe' Woods and ones to avoid
    « Reply #9 on: September 23, 2010, 02:17:53 pm »
    A knife easily removes the flesh, push the knife under the flesh as far as you can go and then just push downwards (be careful) and the flesh will come off in big chunks.
    « Last Edit: September 23, 2010, 02:21:09 pm by Wint3rz »
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    Offline Catzilla

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    Re: 'Safe' Woods and ones to avoid
    « Reply #10 on: September 23, 2010, 02:38:32 pm »
    Ah yes. Was easy really. I did crack a chunk of one of them but I don't mind so much, looks more natural than sawn lines.

    I'm boiling them now. They're coming up filthy! Not sure if I should leave them boiling in the dirty water, or if I should change the water every so often? I think it'll take a long time for the water to be clear!

    Offline johnny70

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    Re: 'Safe' Woods and ones to avoid
    « Reply #11 on: September 23, 2010, 03:18:34 pm »
    My plecs eat the coconut flesh *dude*

    Offline Adam

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    • Ka' Poww
    Re: 'Safe' Woods and ones to avoid
    « Reply #12 on: September 23, 2010, 09:15:51 pm »
    My plecs eat the coconut flesh *dude*

    Finally a use for the stuff!

    Noticed another one grape (vine?) it's safe for the tank (alot of LFS's swll as mopani but develops a white fluff, safe but ugly.
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    Offline plankton

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    Re: 'Safe' Woods and ones to avoid
    « Reply #13 on: September 23, 2010, 10:20:41 pm »
    I think Grapevine rots quite quickly Adam.

    Does no-one here eat coconut? I love it. *grin*
    Sent from my PC as I still don't understand the the logic for mobile internet usage ;) *grin*
    I really hate "autocorrupt"!!!

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    Offline clownman

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    Re: 'Safe' Woods and ones to avoid
    « Reply #14 on: September 23, 2010, 10:25:07 pm »
    yep grape vine is reputedly fast rotter
    yep… im like a bad smell