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Old 06-07-2012, 01:38 AM   #1
Calder
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Default Oak Planters to Oak Cubes

My local HD has some half barrel oak planters for about $20. I can't remember if they were wine or bourbon (bourbon I think), but they do have a label stapled to them saying what they are.

This seems like a cheap source of white oak.

Does anyone see any issues with cutting one down for a lifetime supply of oak cubes.

Would the oak need toasting before use?

Cutting down the staves will expose fresh wood. Would I need to plane/sand the old surfaces off, or are they OK to use?

Sure they are not pristine, so to use any wood will require some sanitation. I figure 10 minutes in a 300 F oven should do that. If it needed toasting, it would be more like a few hours in a 400 F oven.

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Old 06-07-2012, 02:24 AM   #2
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Are you sure they're not treated in some capacity? I used to build landscaping planters back in the day, and we would soak those suckers down in all kinds of anti-pest, anti-mold, anti-water chemicals.

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Old 06-07-2012, 02:44 AM   #3
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Are you sure they're not treated in some capacity? I used to build landscaping planters back in the day, and we would soak those suckers down in all kinds of anti-pest, anti-mold, anti-water chemicals.
that'd be my concern. but, if they're untreated, go for it.

that being said, theres companies out there that sell untreated white oak that you can cut into sticks just as easy, and soak in bourbon or port wine all you want to accomplish essentially the same thing - with less random chemicals.

you could even bulk age a homemade port wine on the oak for a year to suck out most of the tannins, and then use the sticks for homebrew... and it gives you a bunch of port wine to boot.
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Old 06-09-2012, 01:56 AM   #4
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Are you sure they're not treated in some capacity? I used to build landscaping planters back in the day, and we would soak those suckers down in all kinds of anti-pest, anti-mold, anti-water chemicals.
I wondered about that. Looked at them today, and they have the original burnt inside surface, and a label saying where they are from (forget) and that they are used bourbon barels. Stuck my head inside one and couldn't smell anything; no chemicals, but no bourbon either.
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