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I need help with my wood 😜


knee
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Got this from a friend. He told me that he’s had this for years and he found it next to a creek. He eventually downsized and couldn’t use this piece anymore. 
 

Was wondering if anyone can identify and give me some advice on prepping (if usable in my aquarium)

 

Would really love to use this piece for my next tank. 
 

length is about 4’ 

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On 1/23/2024 at 7:12 PM, lefty o said:

you got some spindly wood there!😲 is probably fine as is. being that large, it would be difficult to soak it in a tub of hot water.

Do I actually need to prep? Or can I just use it and put a rock on top of it to prevent from floating?

 

I have a few of the rectangular totes from Home Depot that I can use for prep 

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It's too weathered to identify the type of tree, I think. But one thing to keep in mind is hard vs soft wood. Soft wood will break down in an aquarium much faster than hardwood will. Pressing a fingernail into the wood is an okay test. If it gouges the wood easily, it's a softer wood. If it takes a lot of effort, or doesn't gouge the wood at all, then it's probably hardwood. Also, do a smell test. If it smells resinous, like pine, cedar, or any other sap/resin-heavy tree, then you don't want to use it since those compounds can potentially be toxic to aquatic life in aquaria.

As far as prep, if it fits in a tote, you could soak it to get it waterlogged and leach out any tannins. Otherwise, straight in the tank with a rock should be fine. You might want to pour some boiling water and/or peroxide on it to kill any microorganisms or algae beforehand though.

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On 1/23/2024 at 9:19 PM, knee said:

Do I actually need to prep? Or can I just use it and put a rock on top of it to prevent from floating?

 

I have a few of the rectangular totes from Home Depot that I can use for prep 

you dont have  to prep it, especially due to its size. if it were mine, id probably brush it off, and hit it with a garden hose just to get loose junk off it.

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On 1/23/2024 at 7:57 PM, Seisage said:

Pressing a fingernail into the wood is an okay test. If it gouges the wood easily, it's a softer wood. If it takes a lot of effort, or doesn't gouge the wood at all, then it's probably hardwood. Also, do a smell test. If it smells resinous, like pine, cedar, or any other sap/resin-heavy tree, then you don't want to use it since those compounds can potentially be toxic to aquatic life in aquaria.

I tried pressing with my fingernail and I really needed to put a lot of pressure to leave a small dent. I also don’t know what a resinous smell is but I smelled the wood, like I literally had it on my nose, and I didn’t smell anything. 

On 1/23/2024 at 8:02 PM, lefty o said:

you dont have  to prep it, especially due to its size. if it were mine, id probably brush it off, and hit it with a garden hose just to get loose junk off it.

Got it. I’ll probably soak it in hot water for like a day then maybe some peroxide to kill anything left on it. 
 

 

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On 1/23/2024 at 8:31 PM, knee said:

I tried pressing with my fingernail and I really needed to put a lot of pressure to leave a small dent. I also don’t know what a resinous smell is but I smelled the wood, like I literally had it on my nose, and I didn’t smell anything. 

Got it. I’ll probably soak it in hot water for like a day then maybe some peroxide to kill anything left on it. 
 

 

Anything like pine, cedar, or other conifers is generally the type of scent to look out for. That smell comes from resins that the trees produce. But if it smelled like nothing, then you're good to go 👍 Same on the hardness front.

It's a really cool piece of wood!

Edited by Seisage
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On 1/23/2024 at 8:36 PM, Seisage said:

Anything like pine, cedar, or other conifers is generally the type of scent to look out for. That smell comes from resins that the trees produce. But if it smelled like nothing, then you're good to go 👍 Same on the hardness front.

It's a really cool piece of wood!

Thank you! I’m super excited to use this on my new tank. 
 

The only resin smell I know is for when I dab/smoke 😂😂


Just curious about hard and soft wood. So if it’s  softer wood is it not safe to use in a tank? Cause I remember I had some Malaysian driftwood before that I’ve had in the tank for months. When I rescaped and got the wood out of the water I noticed that it was kinda soft. 

Edited by knee
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On 1/23/2024 at 9:13 PM, knee said:

Thank you! I’m super excited to use this on my new tank. 
 

The only resin smell I know is for when I dab/smoke 😂😂


Just curious about hard and soft wood. So if it’s  softer wood is it not safe to use in a tank? Cause I remember I had some Malaysian driftwood before that I’ve had in the tank for months. When I rescaped and got the wood out of the water I noticed that it was kinda soft. 

All wood will get a little soft after being in water for a long time. It's porous and will absorb water over time.

When I say soft wood, I mean certain species that are inherently softer, not necessarily wood that has become soft over time, although you shouldn't use spongy, half-rotted wood of course. Pine, especially, is notably quite soft compared to hard woods like oak or cherry. Soft woods aren't unsafe to use (unless they still have the aforementioned resins), they just break down faster and can end up fouling your water, so you have to replace them more frequently. Just be careful because not all hardwoods actually have hard wood. "Hardwood" as a term refers to flowering trees (as opposed to conifers, which don't flower). Balsa wood is technically a hardwood, but you wouldn't want to use it in an aquarium lol.

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I would cut it here for the sake of the look of the wood and fitment into a tank, entirely up to you.  Looks like manzanita, so I would at least soak it for 2 weeks.  Just a tote with an airstone, soak it, see what happens and then scrub it as need be.
 

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On 1/23/2024 at 9:13 PM, knee said:

So if it’s  softer wood is it not safe to use in a tank?

softer wood is fine, just not usually used because it turns to nothing quickly.

Edited by nabokovfan87
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On 1/23/2024 at 10:14 PM, nabokovfan87 said:

I would cut it here for the sake of the look of the wood and fitment into a tank, entirely up to you.

I’ll definitely keep this in mind when it comes time to set it up. Not entirely sure what I’ll do but I also tried ordering some driftwood from Temu so I’ll be having additional pieces to play around with. 

 

On 1/23/2024 at 10:14 PM, nabokovfan87 said:

Looks like manzanita, so I would at least soak it for 2 weeks.  Just a tote with an airstone, soak it, see what happens and then scrub it as need be.

Will do! Just wondering what is the airstone for? 

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On 1/24/2024 at 8:58 AM, AllFishNoBrakes said:

LMAOOOOOOOOOO

I was so faded one time I started thinking that the smoke enters the tank and then they get the munchies. That’s why they eat so much 😝

🌬️💨💨💨

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