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Old 12-08-2010, 12:17 AM
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Default Huge Piece of Wood

Hey guys I just found a huge piece of driftwood that I would like to put in my viv. Its about five foot long and at the widest point two foot across, so boiling is out of the question. And ideas pls?
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Old 12-08-2010, 12:34 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

steam it with a steam gun, and then bake it. or try and find a shop with an autoclave and bake it that way
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Old 12-08-2010, 12:36 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

I wouldn't see too much of a problem with it but with foreign objects in vivariums it may not be such a good idea.


-Check for mold, fungus, and mildew, try pouring boiling pots of water on the wood to sanitize the surface. Also look for small pores or holes in the wood, I dont think you want termites in your home.

-Try cleaning a end up to make it flat and that way you can inspect the area that has been removed for any worms, mites, or termites that might harm your frogs or surroundings.

-Also you want to make sure your frogs are not going to get scared or startled by sudden changes in the tank, for this is not beneficial for their mental health.

try posting some pics too.
hope this helps you in your build.
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Old 12-08-2010, 12:44 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

I will post pics soon, going to today but got dark and I don't want to bring it inside yet. Its actually part of a tree that is usually submerged under water in a nearby river. The river has been down for quite a while because its fairly dry and sandy. I would be hard pressed to think that it actually has any live bugs in it unless they can live in a zero moisture log. It kinda has a wierd shape. Its not real thick just has a bunch of curves in it that make it a wide piece. I think the thickest "solid" part is maybe four inches? Maybe even less. So there isn't much space for bugs to find a moist part to live. Could I pour bleach on it and then let it dry in the sun for a few weeks?
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Old 12-08-2010, 12:55 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

actually termites are a staple of frogs so it be a nice food source.

as long as you can get it baked somehow, like an autoclave youll be ok. tons of people here use moss and wood they find and just boil and bake it and works out fine. you can do a search off the main page and find some threads of what other have done when they gather wood and moss from their backyards or near by woods.

if its that large an autoclave would be a good way to go about it
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Old 12-08-2010, 12:59 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

Why not cut it in half or 3 pieces and bake each individual piece, then glue them back together with gorilla glue or something of that nature ...

in theory it should work and although it may be a pain in the ass, its better than paying to have some1 else cook it, and def better than bringing in disease and pests into the viv ...

trust me its not worth it, i made the mistake of putting a 2ft untreated/unsterilized driftwood into my tank and had all kinds of issues later on bc of it, from illness to bugs that were in the wood ... etc ... so IMO, i think it would be easiest to cut it up and reassemble ...

OR find a kiddie/doggie plastic pool and soak it in that with a bleach water mixture overnight, then let it dry out completely, then resoak it in dechlorinated water again overnight and dry it out (thats what i did 2nd time around w/ the same piece of wood, then baked it in the oven to be safe; and i have had no problems since)

good luck
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Old 12-08-2010, 01:09 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

Maybe I'm stupid... whats and autoclave? Like a powder coat booth?
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Old 12-08-2010, 02:40 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

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Maybe I'm stupid... whats and autoclave? Like a powder coat booth?
An autoclave is used for sterilizing. We used to have one to sterilize surgical instruments at the vet office where I worked.

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Old 12-08-2010, 02:41 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

ah no worries, an autoclave is a giant stove..and i mean giant.

this place we provide fire and medical service too builds FA18's. they can actually fit half of a fighter jet into this big oven.

theyve got 8 or 9 on the site and 3 really big ones. theyve got one thats 40 feet long and has a diameter of 21 feet across. so BIGGG! lol

i know the guys at this place will cook stuff for us if we ask..carbon fiber, wood, so on. so you can try looking in your area and see if theyre ok with it and buy them lunch, or a sixer of brew as a thank you.
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Old 12-08-2010, 02:49 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

Yeah ok I get it. Not sure if we have one around here.
If I soak the thing in bleach and let it dry would water reactivate the bleach? And what if I let it dry for weeks in the sun? That should kill pretty much everything right?
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Old 12-08-2010, 03:49 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

Nobody else is gonna say it? OK, Holy Crap! 5 foot x 2 foot!!? How big is the Viv you are dropping this little twig into? Now that's to house one pair of Imitators, right?
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Old 12-08-2010, 03:52 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

i would do a 5% or 8% solution in a pressure washer and then rinse it once more with just a hose. The sun would cause the chlorine to evaporate over the week and you're log should be free of pathogens (if you store it in a traffic free area). You might get spiders and such what find their way into crevasse so a nice shake out and inspection before you install it will suffice.
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Old 12-08-2010, 04:47 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

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Originally Posted by Pumilo View Post
Nobody else is gonna say it? OK, Holy Crap! 5 foot x 2 foot!!? How big is the Viv you are dropping this little twig into? Now that's to house one pair of Imitators, right?
Doug
Its five foot long by two foot wide and four feet high. It then takes a turn and goes another five feet by two feet by four feet again. And It will hopefully house two pairs of Pum Solarte... Hopefully.

Last edited by Burningchef; 12-08-2010 at 04:54 AM.
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Old 12-08-2010, 04:49 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

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Originally Posted by WeeNe858 View Post
i would do a 5% or 8% solution in a pressure washer and then rinse it once more with just a hose. The sun would cause the chlorine to evaporate over the week and you're log should be free of pathogens (if you store it in a traffic free area). You might get spiders and such what find their way into crevasse so a nice shake out and inspection before you install it will suffice.
Now I like this idea. A little more my speed

And just to put this out there... Its litterally freezing outside. Ice will cover this thing by morning. Will this kill anything?

And just for the heck of it while we have this conversation going... Does anyone know of a small fan I could attach via pipes and a housing box to my viv that would be relatively small but make the leaves of my plants sway just a little bit... and I mean a little bit.

Last edited by Burningchef; 12-08-2010 at 04:58 AM.
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Old 12-08-2010, 05:00 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

To address the possibility of chitrid, you will want to make sure it is thoroughly and completely dried, inside and out.
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Old 12-08-2010, 05:06 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

Sorry? Chitrid? I'm new to the amphibian side of things, so you'll have to forgive me.
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Old 12-08-2010, 06:14 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

Chitrid is a fungus. It has been spreading across the planet. It can kill every frog around in the areas it strikes. If it gets into a collection it tends to spread...tank by tank, wiping out every frog in the collection. Scary stuff. It's real and it's here in America. One thing that is thought to kill it is COMPLETELY drying it out. It is wiping out frogs across the planet and is not to be taken lightly. Hope that doesn't keep you up all night.
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Old 12-08-2010, 06:04 PM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

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Originally Posted by Pumilo View Post
Chitrid is a fungus. It has been spreading across the planet. It can kill every frog around in the areas it strikes. If it gets into a collection it tends to spread...tank by tank, wiping out every frog in the collection. Scary stuff. It's real and it's here in America. One thing that is thought to kill it is COMPLETELY drying it out. It is wiping out frogs across the planet and is not to be taken lightly. Hope that doesn't keep you up all night.
Doug
Wow. Ummm. Got it. Chitrid is way bad.
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Old 12-08-2010, 06:10 PM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

Here is the piece. And yes after looking closer I did find wet spots so cleaning will be a bit longer.

001.jpg

002.jpg

003.jpg

004.jpg

006.jpg

007.jpg

009.jpg

011.jpg

012.jpg
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Old 12-08-2010, 06:40 PM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

If I am remembering right, you said it was partially submerged? This would mean wet on the inside...all the way to the core. Personally, I would not feel safe till it had dried out for at least a couple of weeks. I would set it up indoors where it is warm with a good fan pointed at it.
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Old 12-08-2010, 07:10 PM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

Oh for sure. I only have the stand built for my enclosure. So i'm still a couple of weeks if not a few months out. I just saw the piece and coudn't pass it up. I'm torching the surface of it now and getting all the sand and junk off from the river bank with a wire brush. I'll be doing "deep" cleaning when I figure out for sure how i'm gonna go about that.
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Old 12-08-2010, 07:16 PM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

What type of wood is it? If it is some sort of pine, cedar or other strong odor woods then I would not introduce it into the tank.

I have several pieces of large driftwood myself that I have collected and used. The best method I have found for large pieces that I could not bake is to let it dry out in the sun on a concrete pad. If the wood reaches a high enough temperature for several hours the chytrid fungus will die. I live in the deep south where temps are around 100 for several months straight, but unfortunately where you are located I do not think you have this luxury.

The next best alternative I have found is is you can place it in the the tank you are using and put a light on it that produces heat. I find that those cheap home depot work lights for 5 bucks put off quite a lot of heat. Shine the light directly into the tank and the temp should well exceed 100. Make sure to monitor the temps so that you do not accidentally create a fire hazard. You may have to cover the tank as well to help hold in the heat. I place a thermometer in the tank to make sure the temps are high enough.

You can always try the bleach solution but I am wary of how much bleach soaks into the wood that cannot be removed. Of course you can wash it or soak it in clean water but bleach can do funny things to the natural beauty of the wood as well. For example it takes me 6-8 months to soak a piece of fresh driftwood before the tannin level is low enough to be able to be introduced into a fish tank.
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Old 12-08-2010, 07:46 PM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

Yeah, its going to be harder if your in a colder region. Definitely place the wood indoors if you can after washing it, a shed or the garage. But even then it would be too cold for dry out the wood fast. As flapjax3000 said, you can shine lights onto the wood but I was thinking radiating heaters. It can double as a heat source for your house. :] And if you want to sterilize it even more, you can install black lights into a shop light fixture and "tan" the wood.
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Old 12-08-2010, 08:14 PM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

I lived in the Gulf Shores area from when I was born till I was 18 so I know what you meen about the heat but even here in the summer a typical day is 100 degrees. the record temp is 114 I believe. But unfortunately its winter right now and its really really cold. This past winter it went as low as -4 degrees, so... yeah i'm freezing right now

And I found after scrubbing it for a bit that some of it was burnt and was basically charcoal. Will this act like adding charcoal to my soil? I know it would clean water but...
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Old 12-08-2010, 10:42 PM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

The scorching won't hurt, it's just charcoal now. Valid concern about the type of wood. Sappy woods like pine should never be used. I also agree that if you bleach it, bleach could seep out later, especially on something that big.
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Old 12-08-2010, 10:59 PM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

do you have access to an old 55 gallon metal drum? if so set it on a couple cinder blocks and build a small fire under it and boil the water and log in it. as a kid i used to help my uncles clean and gut hogs. they would use an old cast iron bathtub and build a fire next to it and heat up big metal pieces like gear wheels and stuff. they would heat them up and dip them in the water to heat it. then dip the hog in it to help loosen the skin so it could be skinned. inow it is not the same but that just what pops in my head when i think about boiling things!

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Old 12-08-2010, 11:05 PM
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do you have access to an old 55 gallon metal drum? if so set it on a couple cinder blocks and build a small fire under it and boil the water and log in it. as a kid i used to help my uncles clean and gut hogs. they would use an old cast iron bathtub and build a fire next to it and heat up big metal pieces like gear wheels and stuff. they would heat them up and dip them in the water to heat it. then dip the hog in it to help loosen the skin so it could be skinned. inow it is not the same but that just what pops in my head when i think about boiling things!

AG
I like that idea. I would still make sure to totally dry it afterwords. Oh, and take the Hog out first!
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Old 12-08-2010, 11:31 PM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

A little off topic, but oil from woods can be removed via the microwave. If you place a piece of pine in it the oil and resin are pushed out and bubble up white on the surface. This is only recommend for small woodworking projects, not for vivariums.
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Old 12-09-2010, 01:06 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

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The scorching won't hurt, it's just charcoal now. Valid concern about the type of wood. Sappy woods like pine should never be used. I also agree that if you bleach it, bleach could seep out later, especially on something that big.
Doug
The bleach will not seep out if done properly ... bleach the wood (not straight bleach; use a strongly diluted mixture), allow it to dry out COMPLETELY. Then resoak the wood in water using dechlorinator (that u use in fish tanks) using a 10x stronger dose then recommended on the bottle. If soaked for a couple days, the dechlorinator will neutralize the remaining bleach in the wood, then allow the wood to dry out COMPLETELY again a 2nd time and u should b good 2 go! (like i said before, this is the same method ive used on large pieces of driftwood and ive never had a problem)
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Old 12-09-2010, 01:17 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

Great ideas. I think I know what to do now.

And I'm not sure what kind of wood it is. It has a few pieces that look like a cedar but the wood is so hard and smooth in most places I can't see how it could be. We have a lot of cedars around but none near the area where I found it. There is no sap left and it doesn't smell like a tree so i'm gonna venture out there and say that I think its fine.
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Old 12-13-2010, 05:55 AM
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Default Re: Huge Piece of Wood

Why not cut it with a saw and boil them seperate? I mean afterwards you have ton of pieces with which you could make an awesome structure in your vivarium or just more pieces to save and keep or to spread out in that vivarium or in any others...
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Old 12-13-2010, 04:51 PM
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Why not cut it with a saw and boil them seperate? I mean afterwards you have ton of pieces with which you could make an awesome structure in your vivarium or just more pieces to save and keep or to spread out in that vivarium or in any others...
I do believe this is what i'm gonna do. Because I have changed the inside theme slightly of my viv it wouldn't fit properly anyhow without looking corwded. But it is a great peice of wood that I want to utilize somehow.
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