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ANTIQUE FURNITURE RESTORATION DISCUSSION BOARD

Re: Dry Rot Diagnosis

Posted By: Patrick (server4.samford.edu)
Date: 4/5/4 09:17

In Response To: Re: Dry Rot Diagnosis (James Schooley)

Wow, I shouldn't take a weekend off from the Internet. I do apologize for not checking in. You guys are great to give this so much of your attention. Here's some more info that I see now I should have provided. Even though these windows were painted prior to my getting them, it's obvious they had a pretty hard life. There're details that at one time framed different parts of the windows. Through wear and weather, though, these details have been smoothed away on the parts that would have been in the most direct contact with water (the parts that were on the lower portion of the window).

I also should have included my location. I'm in Birmingham, Alabama, but, we do have central air conditioning and heat and it is very rare that the windows or doors are open to provide ventilation. Maybe of related importance, the windows are displayed rather high up in a room with a vaulted ceiling. Having just come through winter and reading all of the replies from Greg and James, maybe the heat build up contributes to the rapid drying out of the wood.

Not knowing everything about this event, from the information in the posts above, it seems probable to me that it is a moisture loss problem. Although on the windows this is in its infancy, I have seen similar rot on other wood, like a board of old pine that was used on a barn and starts to get segmented around the edges and these spots are spongy or brittle like sugar cubes. It is the same segmentation that I've seen on the edges of wood that has been burned, which, now that I've read your posts, is probably what's happening, an extreme change from moist to dry, but at a slower rate.

So, how to proceed? Make sure whatever fungus is there is dead by treating it with a fungicide; then, should I try to restore a level of moisture by stripping the paint off and using oil, linseed, over the bare wood followed by some spar urethane or other treatment that will stabilize the wood? I apologize if I'm spewing nonsense; I really am out of my area of expertise and am grateful for all the help.

I'll try to get some pictures and a moisture level this week.

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