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I am speaking out of ignorance here (so what else is new) but I do recall many posts by very qualified individuals on here that were in the saw mill business and owned kilns. I remember statements that at a certain point in drying, the kiln was heated to a relatively high degree and had to be held there for so many hours in order to kill anything living in the wood. If this be the case, which I believe it is, solar heated kilns will not kill the critters. However, an electric heating system can be used to supplement the solar.
And so, when someone tells you that they have a kiln, that's only half the story. The only way I would ever buy from a local sawmill is if I had my own kiln. Buying from reputable lumber yards is your safest bet.
 

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No, TonyB I think you're correct on all your points.

I looked into building a solar kiln and there is a lot of information on it out there and most seem to only talk about temp vs. moisture loss graphs, with very little attention to insects. I believe 145° is the magic number and I don't see a solar kiln getting that high, but maybe depending on climate?

You can get away with insect free air drying if

1) you buy very soon after its sawn (depending on species, don't buy lumber that has been sitting around a long time)
2) treat with termite inhibitor type borate solution prior to stickering (be sure to sweep all the sawdust off first!)

I think its a good idea to carry a block plane and hit the edges or sapwood this is where the borers will go first.

I've done enough air drying and seen enough lumber ruined to have a lot of confidence in the borate treatments. Best applied immediately on fresh milled lumber. After that, drying is just to get the MC down, not kill bugs. In that case supplemental drying could be done in a solar kiln, so in my case, this would be a simple, "set and forget" way to do it.

That said, so far I haven't seen the need for a kiln. All of the air dried lumber I've used in furniture making will stabilize around 12 -14%. I usually rough cut all the parts and store it in a climate controlled room for a while where it will get down to 8%. But the truth is, I rarely ever use a moisture meter.

I know its something I pay a lot more attention to now than I used to!
 

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Are there any concerns with working wood that has been treated as suggested in some posts on this thread (like the termite inhibitor type borate solution @DrRobert suggested)? Do you need to take precautions, like a special respirator or keeping sawdust off your skin?
 

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BTW. i dont think termite killer will affect borers. Termites come out of the wood for water/moisture I believe. That is why you see them so easily. Borers are hatched in the wood and dont come out until they are ready for their next stage. Most chemicals will not penetrate the wood.
 

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Are there any concerns with working wood that has been treated as suggested in some posts on this thread (like the termite inhibitor type borate solution @DrRobert suggested)? Do you need to take precautions, like a special respirator or keeping sawdust off your skin?
It’s basically a form of boric acid, I can’t see any health issues with anything beyond what normal wearing a dust mask.

Borers are the larval stage of the adult beetle. The eggs are laid on the surface of the wood, the larva hatch and begin their journey inward. When they’ve matured (months to years) the adult fly emerges from the hole.

TimBor and Bora do work, the dried residue prevents infestation by being toxic to the larva.

Once you see the holes it’s too late then you need heat.
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
It’s basically a form of boric acid, I can’t see any health issues with anything beyond what normal wearing a dust mask.

Borers are the larval stage of the adult beetle. The eggs are laid on the surface of the wood, the larva hatch and begin their journey inward. When they’ve matured (months to years) the adult fly emerges from the hole.

TimBor and Bora do work, the dried residue prevents infestation by being toxic to the larva.

Once you see the holes it’s too late then you need heat.
So are you saying that by spraying Timbor in the slab and concentrating on the holes seen that it will not penetrate and come into contact with the larvae that might be inside?
Today my moisture meter came and the slabs are reading between 5.2 and 8.4 which is pretty dry so that tells me these trees have been down a while.
 

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Or properly kiln dried. More likely kiln dried because I dont thing wood on its own would dry that low of a percentage except in extreme conditions like living in the desert area.
 

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So are you saying that by spraying Timbor in the slab and concentrating on the holes seen that it will not penetrate and come into contact with the larvae that might be inside?
Today my moisture meter came and the slabs are reading between 5.2 and 8.4 which is pretty dry so that tells me these trees have been down a while.
Based on the moisture and if there’s no dust anywhere, the bugs are most likely gone. But you can never be sure unless the lumber is 3-4 yrs old. Once the wood gets dry enough infestation is less likely.

I don’t think anything will penetrate deep enough in the tunnels, but.

[edit] I got you confused with the person with the cookie. Yours isn’t powder post beetles, it’s grubs or caterpillar type critters much larger larvae and associated with decaying wood. It could be a “feature”, be sure the wood isn’t punky,
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
Or properly kiln dried. More likely kiln dried because I dont thing wood on its own would dry that low of a percentage except in extreme conditions..
These slabs were from the back of my property. I went looking for fallen trees a few days after a stormy night and saw this tree on the ground so I figured it had just fallen. Unless aliens kiln dried it with their laser beam!

I thought maybe the meter was off but I tested it on furniture in the house and it’s reading 2.3 in most cases
 

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I thought maybe the meter was off but I tested it on furniture in the house and it’s reading 2.3 in most cases
is that a pin meter, and are you following the directions carefully? i ask because you are saying numbers that i would never gueess. do you live in a desert? i also would expect freshly fallen trees to be 20% + range.

reading wood which has a finish on it may not give an accurate reading.
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
is that a pin meter, and are you following the directions carefully? i ask because you are saying numbers that i would never gueess. do you live in a desert? i also would expect freshly fallen trees to be 20% + range.

reading wood which has a finish on it may not give an accurate reading.
Well to be honest it isn’t exactly a state of the art instrument I have. It’s a Klein pinless $40 meter. I’m in Georgia so it does feel like the dessert some days 😂
That makes sense with readings on finished furniture.
 

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.............I thought maybe the meter was off but I tested it on furniture in the house and it’s reading 2.3 in most cases
Your meter is probably off. I seriously doubt that your store bought furniture is 2.3% unless you baked it in the Arizona sun for several years. I would also think it would be prone to splitting and cracking, not to mention the fire hazard. I am by no stretch of the imagination an expert on wood. I'm just using common sense.
 

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Discussion Starter · #34 ·
Vertebrate Arthropod Insect Organism Beetle

Insect Arthropod Wood Beetle Pest
Well it’s safe to say I have at least 1 boring beetle. I laid out some of the cut pieces on my work bench and have been keeping a close eye on it the last few days. This afternoon I saw this little fella walking on top of one of the boards. Can anyone tell which species of wood boring beetle it is ?
 

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@stevenjohn21
I haven't had the time but I'm sure you can look up on the web the life cycle of these critters. I dont think the emerging critters are a danger, just the child bearing ones. Better check it out and give us a short brief on what you found out.
Thanks in advance.
 

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The larva eat the wood and create the channels, not the adults. The adults emerge from the holes after the larva pupate and mature, just like any insect. AFAIK they mate, lay eggs and die but they don’t eat the wood.

Sonc e they can emerge up to 5 years later, seeing adults doesn’t mean you have an active infection - that’s the piles of sawdust - but it does mean you need to think about treating any wood you may have stored for a while. In a recent thread Imposted a pic of one of my Bessey clamps with a wood handle with beetle holes, so they are slippery little bas#$&ds.

Is your shop closed or open?

There are several entomology sites, ignire the pest control sites. This is a good one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #39 · (Edited)
The larva eat the wood and create the channels, not the adults. The adults emerge from the holes after the larva pupate and mature, just like any insect. AFAIK they mate, lay eggs and die but they don’t eat the wood.

Sonc e they can emerge up to 5 years later, seeing adults doesn’t mean you have an active infection - that’s the piles of sawdust - but it does mean you need to think about treating any wood you may have stored for a while. In a recent thread Imposted a pic of one of my Bessey clamps with a wood handle with beetle holes, so they are slippery little bas#$&ds.

Is your shop closed or open?

There are several entomology sites, ignire the pest control sites. This is a good one.
My shop is a 2 car garage connected to the house.
 
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