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Old Oak Beam


George

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[IMG]http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y292/grussuk/P1000232mod.jpg[/IMG]

As you can see this is in a bit of a state, but is fairly substantial and I don't think compromised yet.  What I've already tried to do to clean it up is plane, sand, chisel, scrape or sand with a grinder and flat type flap wheel - this latter the most successful but the ant/woodworm holes though not particularly deep just don't come out easily and it's going to cost a lot by the time I get there.

My question is has anybody tried an Arbortech woodcarvers blade in an angle grinder.  Not much of an artist, so I don't want to do a sculpture just end up with a reasonably rustic beam.  Axminster supply these and cost around £34.

 

 

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Wow that looks a bit special - not sure I like the sound of the last line "Lancelot can be unforgiving if you make a mistake."
Thanks Pierre I might have to pluck up a bit of courage for this one though.
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hi ok

          looks just like mine where,       get a sharp small axe and hack out the bad stuff , if it`s realy bad just push the axe head along the beam to remove the " white oak "   just leave the untouched dark wood , now finish it with an angle grinder fitted with a backing pad and a zercon type stiff sand ing disc about a 60 grit will be ok

[IMG]http://i83.photobucket.com/albums/j311/daveolive/render/PDR_0021.jpg[/IMG]

            Dave

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hi ok

          Thanks Jonzjob , used this trick a lot back in Wales, can I just add a warning the dust from the sanding goes everywhere... wear a good dust mask, not just a white type one,  one with the filter pads on the side and a full face mask , the dust will get in your eyes and it burns .

          Treat the beam after with the xylophene , it will darken the wood but will kill any bugs that are left , I know light oak looks better but I would sooner have dark wood with no woodworm than light oak with`em .

      Just for info .. the finish was just bees wax bought for €12 a kilo from our local bee keeper mixed with pure turpentine and a few capfuls of sicatiff (sp )  (hardener)  melt the lot in a ban marie ( sp again I  am not a cook )  until it is " like runny ear wax " apply with a brush and polish off with a dome brush in a drill when set .

if you need more info on this just ask ,or look it up on the net

Dave

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hi Dave
Never thought of an Axe, I did consider an adze, but never having used used one I thought at high level it might be awkward.  I'll give the axe a try next time there in August, certainly looks effective in your picture.  Still suffering with the dust, only had those white ones available and didn't notice until too late.  I already bought the Xylophene before exposing the beam, not realising it was going to be quite so bad and a while before I could  use it.

Many thanks

   

 

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Hi All

I have and am using a arbortech I have found it to work really well but you do need to be careful as it will take off lots of wood so you need to be light with it also the dust it produces is emence so do wear a good dust mask and full face is best as stated already.

 

 

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Thanks John - I'm lucky in that when in the UK, I'm not too far from their Sittingbourne depot.  Though in this case nobody seemed to know anything about it.  Probably unfair to assume they would, they can't all know everything and I too generally like the way they operate. 

This may sound a stupid question to Fridgeman, but is it possible to drag this horizontally backwards and avoid the possibility of digging in too deeply?

Arbortech are an Australian Company and they do have a short video on their web site, but much of it is cutting a channel the other bit carving a wooden horse, which miraculously appears.
http://www.arbortech.com.au/view/woodworking-information/pro-4_woodcarver_20070412135206

One other possibility that I thought of, now that I've seen one close up, is to use an adze and club hammer together, holding the adze handle in the left hand horizontally while striking the back of the head with the hammer - not unlike the idea of pushing the axe head along and similar to a mallet and wide chisel.

Anyway all help has been much appreciated.  I can't wait to have a go now, probably going to go back armed to the teeth, Rambo style[:)]

 

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I dealt with exactly the same problem this weekend with a badly rotted beam. I used a small adze from Axminster to clean away the frass and cut back to good wood. It took a little while to get the right action but the short handle means it can be used in a tight space and upside down. The bonus is that the cleaned up wood has adze marks on it and looks really "authentic". Unfortunately I didn't take a picture of the finished result to post.

I used the Henry Taylor straight adze from Axminster

http://www.axminster.co.uk/product.asp?pf_id=23550&name=adze&user_search=1&sfile=1&jump=0

I've also used abrasive wheels on angle grinders in the past. They need careful handling to avoid gouge marks in the finished effect but do the business quite well although the dust is a problem, particularly if the beam has been soaked in some dubious substance in the dim and distant past in an effort to stop rot and insect damage. I talked to a neighbour and he told me that one solution adopted locally was to soak the beams in used engine oil. I've found that Sugar Soap does quite a pretty good job in getting the gunk off before cleaning up the beam but isn't 100% effecitve.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi George

Sorry have not got back sooner, enjoying the good weather, that is exactly how I do it gentle strokes from left to right or right to left if you like[:)]

taking off a small amount at a time you will find that unless you really press hard you will do no damage to a old beam, as you get down to good wood after taking off the rot it is almost as hard as steel, I tried turning a piece of very old floorboard as a plate, the finished product looked good but I was forever sharpening my chisels the wood was that hard.

And do wear a good mask the dust is awful.

 

 

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No problem and thanks for the input - I'm not back over until 3rd week of August.  I have now bought the Arbortech blade to have a go with. I picked up the single handed Adze whilst in Axminster and tried to visualise using it.  The action would seem to be most awkward, but whilst not ruling it out, quite honestly didn't fancy trying that. The full, two handed Adze would seem to be out of the question with the beam in situ.  If it's sharp enough I do have an Axe in reserve.
The spokeshave idea as John said and much like a drawknife would not work on the vertical faces, but think I'm going to end up with a combination of several things.  Certainly the wood is extremely hard below the rotted stuff and quite amazing how those ants or woodworm manage to get in. 

I'm looking forward to having another go at this, armed with several types of discs and brushes as well as a metal finder for odd nails.  If I get anywhere will glady take another picture to show how it turns out.

Many thanks to you all

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  • 1 month later...

As promised an update....

Before:-

[IMG]http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y292/grussuk/P1000232mod.jpg[/IMG]

After:-

I doubt that I got the same section, but as you can see, some progress was made - the Arbortech blade worked a treat until it became a little blunt and need to sharpen it before having another go.  It managed quite well to start with although the guard was very much restrictive and think I will try again with just the normal angle grinder guard next time.  The axe though Dave got me nowhere, perhaps I'm a bit of a wimp or it wasn't sharp enough, either way I just couldn't make any headway.
The amount of dust and chips once piled up was quite spectacular and may use this to fill some of the remaining insect holes after treating it of course.
What to mix it with is my next question - pva?

I hope this follow up is of some use and thanks once again to you all.

 

 

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  • 1 year later...

Hi George

Just read your post, seems the Arbortech worked a treat as it did for me, I have mixed wood dust with PVA to repair wood many times (normally splits) and it works a treat but personally I would not use it over a large area and looking at your picture it shows the work and effort you have put in to make the beam look really good why try to then cover that up, I would leave it as is, just treat it with a wood preserver (you know the stuff) then a finish, someone on here will know exactly what to use, then you can sit back and say "I did that".......and well done you.

 

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