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Bamboo Preservation and Treatments Discuss drying, storage, and bamboo preservation treatments. Also See Forum Post Harvest Bamboo Pests

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Old 7th July 2007, 09:11 PM
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: USA - Sykesville, Maryland
Posts: 5
Is heat tempered/flame torched bamboo more bug resistant?

I am new to this forum, and to the world of bamboo. I have been using the slow burn method (with a propane torch) of curing the bamboo. I love the end results of the burning, the varnish that it leaves behind but I am wondering, does this make the bamboo bug resistant? I have been making bamboo wind chimes and was asked if they should be kept inside or out. I have mine outside, and didn't know how to quite answer this question.

Guess my question is: by using the slow burn method with the torch, I am ensuring the best longevity of this? I have attached a photo of one of the wind chimes I have created.
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Old 9th July 2007, 04:56 AM
Mark Meckes
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: USA - Texas, Austin
Posts: 2,374
Hi tikamars, Welculm! ... and very interesting question.
I don't think that heat treating bamboo alone would make it more resistant to boring beetles, (though it can kill any eggs or larvae if they are present).
In fact I have read somewhere that kiln dried wood lumber can be more susceptible after it is freshly kilned, and then it becomes less susceptible the longer it ages.
I would imagine the same would hold true for bamboo as heat treating doesn't necessarily remove the starch content from the bamboo.
It would only be as the bamboo ages that the starchy content would become stale and lose it's palatability to borers.

However I'll bring up two points ..
- If bad bugs aren't actively present than there's less chance that one would be affected by them.
As an example, there are many types of critters that could destroy ones home and household items, but if critters can be kept away by not providing them with an environment to flourish, there's no reason to have all ones earthly possessions impregnated with toxic chemicals.

- Often the best method to ensure protection of wood based products from the elements is to provide a good sealant or protective coating.
With bamboo, because it generally has a fairly resilient surface coating the most susceptible areas are the cut ends and perhaps the sheath scar at the nodes where the sheath detaches.

BTW I'd love to see your chimes but your pic didn't come through.
You could try again ...
Manage Attachment > Choose File > Upload > wait for processing to finish.
... or upload pics at the gallery.
Here's a category for Bamboo Chimes, Mobiles, Kinetic Sculpture

Mark Meckes -

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Old 9th July 2007, 07:07 AM
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: USA - Sykesville, Maryland
Posts: 5
Thank you for the information and the link. I am still learning the workings of this forum.
I have added my photo to the wind chime gallery. Here is the link, hope I am doing this right.

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