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Turning Laburnum and Yew

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WoodMangler

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I've acquired a small hoard of wood from a former tree-surgeon, most of it properly seasoned for several years. There's quite a lot of Laburnum and Yew in it - I know the foliage of both trees is poisonous, but are there any special precautions I should take before turning either of these seasoned woods ?
 

CHJ

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Good ventilation, and avoid contact with the fine dust as much as possible, both can irritate the eyes and nasal passages and sensitive skin areas. {Wash your hands :) }

On the technical front avoid creating heat from friction when finishing, both woods will readily form micro cracks on the surface if subjected to friction heat.

With care you should not have any problems.
 

woodyturner

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Both of the woods you have mentioned come with a health warning so every precaution should be taken to protect yourself I'm in agreement with all that CHJ said plus a good respirator to prevent any permanent damage to your health I'm not saying done turn it just take the proper precautions both of these woods produce stunning results.
I'm one of those idiots that ignored all the health warnings when I first started turning and now I'm paying the price for it with breathing problems dont do the same and you will enjoy a long and happy life of turning
 

Jethro

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Both woods are beautiful, but keep an eye on the laburnum as it is notorious for woodworm (hammer)
 

WoodMangler

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Thanks folks, I feel a forced-air respirator may be entering my life...

Supplementary question - any problem with the splinters ?
 

Neil Farrer

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WoodMangler":1xvvra8f said:
Thanks folks, I feel a forced-air respirator may be entering my life...

Supplementary question - any problem with the splinters ?
They sometimes hurt!

In relation to the myths surrounding the poisonous capabilities of Laburnum and Yew the splinters wont affect you any more than any other wood (get Wenge splinters out as they are reported to cause septacemia - but then anything could and will if you leave foreign bodies in places in your body that foreign bodies are not supposed to be).

Yew is poisonous if you happen to be a horse and stupidly eat lots of the berries! If you happen to be a fox your own sense of self preservation will deter you from going anywhere near it as the smell is repugnant to Mr Fluffy Fox - the real reason that Yew trees were planted in Churchyards, nothing to do with myths about keeping evil spirits away, but keeping the foxes from digging up the paupers graves! If you're a rat, Yew is bad news as well cos you hate the smell. The bark, berries and foliage is poisonous if eaten in some quantity, the amounts and the reactions vary. There are no know cases of the dust causing any effects exclusive to Yew.

Laburnum likewise, please make sure you pack a full picnic and dont decide to have a snack on a yew or laburnum and you should survive to Christmas! Rule no 1 Don't eat it, Rule no 2 don't breathe it!
 
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