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Why Iron Stains Wood...


Sunday, December 13th, 2009

Iron stain is that unsightly blue–black or gray discoloration that can occur on nearly all woods. Oak, redwood, cypress, and cedar are particularly prone to iron stain because these woods contain large amounts of tannin-like extractives. The discoloration and subsequent streaking is caused by a chemical reaction between extractives and iron in steel products, such as nails, screws, and other fasteners.

Coatings for fasteners, such as galvanizing (zinc) or ceramic coatings, give a wide range of performance. Shiny galvanized fasteners are electroplated with zinc. The zinc coating is very thin and fails quickly because it really is just a sacrificial coating. Dull-gray galvanized fasteners are mechanically coated and can last longer than electroplated fasteners; however, because the zinc coating has significant amounts of iron, staining is likely. Hot-dipped (double-dipped) galvanized fasteners, recognized by their "globby" appearance, give the longest protection to the steel. The globs of zinc on a hot-dipped galvanized screw can clog the head, making the screw difficult to use. Therefore, stainless steel is the best choice for fasteners, particularly screws.

If you have any questions or comments about this blog entry please do not hesitate to send me an e-mail. Thanks and be safe when working with tools!!!

 

Burgie  

 

burgie picture

Robert Burgoyne, also known as "Burgie", has been doing woodworking for nearly 30 years. He started learning at an early age in his grandfather's garage and continued while working with his father in construction. The hobby has now become a business with Creative Landscape Accents. Burgie builds  high quality woodworking projects for the outdoors and also enjoys making decorative accent pieces for inside the house. While not working in his shop doing woodworking Burgie enjoys computers, restoring his old 1964 Chevy C60 2-ton dump truck and riding his Harley-Davidson Road King throughout beautiful Colorado.

 

 


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