Help Identifying This Wood

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by Rockstar08, Oct 12, 2013.

  1. Rockstar08
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    Rockstar08 New Member

    Found some partially buried pieces of wood on the coast and hoping someone can help identify what it is from. It appears to have a number of interlocking components and scarph joints with structures held together by metal cleats and wooden dowels.

    Thanks.
     

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    Last edited: Oct 12, 2013
  2. philSweet
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    philSweet Senior Member

  3. alan white
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    alan white Senior Member

    You would have to get a sample and take it to a university equipped to match it to a known species. You should have a piece that's not weathered. Some species are obvious and some are lesser known. Probably a hardwood like oak, chestnut or even a mix of locally available lumber, so don't assume the sample is representative of the lot.
     
  4. Rockstar08
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    Rockstar08 New Member

    so do you think it was a building structure or ship? best guess?:confused:
     
  5. PAR
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  6. alan white
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    alan white Senior Member

    After looking at the photos, the knots look like a conifer, so soft wood. I would guess the timbers are from building construction. The wood on a ship would on average be of a clearer grain, without so many big knots.
     
  7. Mr Efficiency
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    Mr Efficiency Senior Member

    Looks like my ancient Oregon Pine extension ladder, without the knots.
     
  8. aaronhl
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    aaronhl Senior Member

    Bridge?
     
  9. philSweet
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    philSweet Senior Member

    I thought about that too, it explains how it got in the water, but I couldn't find a photo showing the construction of a Mennonite covered bridge. I don't think Oregon has any traditionally built covered bridges left, but obviously, this one isn't from a bridge that's still there.

    I'd show the photos around to members of the nearest conservative Mennonite community. The wood doesn't look very old. It appears to come from a modern mill and looks to be plantation raised. But then it's been worked by traditional methods.

    PAR, just to be ornery, I'm betting Ponderosa pine.

    edit. Another point of contact would be the Region 6 USFS Architect. He would know of any tradition bridge structures on USFS lands. It doesn't look old enough to be WPA built, but it could be, and some of those were replaced in recent times with similar builds. You could also contact Amiericorp to get a list of bridge projects they worked on in Oregon.

    edit #2. Found this also, it looks terrific. http://www.tfguild.org/downloads/publications/Historic-American-Timber-Joinery.pdf
     
  10. MoePorter
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    MoePorter Junior Member

    Those scarfs look Japanese...All those angled interlocks - very cool. I've never seen American joinery quite so intricate - certainly not since steel became widely available.
    Any chance it's tsunami debris?

    A traditional Japanese house/temple beam would look a lot like your photos. The kicker would be the absence or near absence of iron fasteners. Westerners LOVE the iron...Japanese keep the old wood joinery ways alive...Moe
     
  11. SamSam
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    SamSam Senior Member

    Timber framing in America (without iron fasteners) had a resurgence and became popular again almost 40 years ago. There is nothing in the beams shown in the OP to suggest much of intricacy. It's just standard, barn type structure joinery.

    These show some intricacy...

    http://www.arlingtontimberframes.com/scarfjoint.htm

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]





    http://blog.timberframephoto.com/2012/04/compound-joinery-timber-frame-design.html

    [​IMG]
     
  12. michael pierzga
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    michael pierzga Senior Member

  13. Tiny Turnip
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    Tiny Turnip Senior Member

    building frame, softwood. the central timber in the second picture looks like it may have had some reuse or alteration. There's an interesting row of boot shaped holes or sockets...
     
  14. Rockstar08
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    Rockstar08 New Member

    I also emailed a picture to a craftsman that specializes in interlocking joints and this is what he had to say.

    "the timbers are definitely artifacts of western framing. It's not ship framing, but architectural.

    The scarf joint once sat atop a post, which explains the mortise in the middle. The form of that type of scarf is fairly typical, and is referred to technically as a 'splayed-and-tabled scarf with stub-tenoned abutments'. Judging by the wood, I would guess it is Douglas Fir or similar species."
     

  15. PAR
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