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Thread: The truth about pallets

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    The truth about pallets

    I found this while browsing, http://www.pallettruth.com/risks-to-workers/

    How much truth is in these statements made by a person or company which must be selling plastic pallets.

    I would be regarded as one of these DIY people who spend many hours planning, sanding and creating "stuff" with reclaimed pallet wood and a lot of the furniture in my house is built from these reclaimed pallets. (I don't use it bread boards and stuff like that)

    They talk of poison in the wood, surely any treated wood is poisonous, some more than others, maybe Dave being in this line of work could give us some insight into these statements.

    When working with wood especially when preparing, a dust mask is worn, should I be wearing my other mask which is for gasses?

    When you paint a wood sealer onto the wood you have to wear a special mask because it let off a gas.

    My question is other than the normal precautions taken while working with any treated wood, what other dangers would I need to watch out for?

    I have a metal detector which is used to check the wood before it gets put on the jointer, and as for nails sticking, I am more concerned about the nails I shoot out the nails gun. I had to make a note to myself a couple weeks ago " don't hold the wood at the bottom while shooting nails" it is rather painful when you can see the black line through your finger sticking out just below your finger nail I know "idiot" I wasn't thinking, or should I say didn't expect the nail to go right through the wood and my finger.

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    This is my biggest concern...

    Pallet Recycle Projects – Examples Gone Wrong


    If you have gone looking for creative home décor ideas on Pinterest, you’ve probably come across photos of cute furniture and home goods made from recycled wood pallets. Intrepid do-it-yourselfers have made everything from coffee tables to bookshelves to baby cribs out of used wood shipping pallets. One group even builds entire homes for refugees out of discarded projects. As tempting as these low cost furnishing alternatives can be, however, you would be wise avoid pallet recycle projects altogether. Wood pallets are extremely dangerous. By bringing them into your home, you expose your family to a number of serious health risks.

    The scariest place for wood pallet recycle projects to be is in a child’s bedroom. People have built cribs, beds, and bookshelves for their kids without realizing how many diseases and chemicals they are exposing their children to. The cheap wood often grows mold when exposed to humidity during shipping. The materials from which these pallets are built contain known carcinogens like wood dust and formaldehyde. Burrowing insects often hide deep inside the wood. They can carry diseases or eat away at the wood in your home.

    Of course, many pallets are treated with pesticides and fungicides to avoid this problem, but the chemicals involved in those processes can be even more dangerous. Exposure to Methyl Bromide, one of the most popular pesticides used in pallets, has been connected to severe neurological disorders. Wood pallets used in children’s furniture are also a breeding ground for dangerous bacteria. The National Consumer League found that ten percent of all the wood pallets they tested contained E. coli, and three percent tested positive for Listeria, a deadly disease that is fatal thirty percent of the time it is contracted.

    You should also be aware of just how flammable wood pallets are before bringing pallet recycling projects into your home. A number of severe wood pallet fires have made headlines all over the country. While most of these fires were at shipping warehouses or wood recycling centers, they still carry serious implications for pallet use in the home. Because the engineered wood is treated with highly flammable chemicals, wood pallets can catch fire, even without an ignition source.

    Some do-it-yourselfers have built entire living rooms from wood pallets. They’ve constructed sofas, coffee tables, bookshelves, chairs, and even walls and floors with wood pallets. Imagine if something in a room so full of pallet recycle projects caught fire. In just minutes, the whole house would be engulfed in flames.

    These examples should serve as a warning to anyone thinking of bringing wood pallet furniture into their home. Instead, consider one of the many other affordable and sustainable options for recycling furniture

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    I find these statement rather confusing, considering most houses in the USA are built entirely out of wood. Is there something I am missing here, is the wood used to build house treated with a non flammable poison, but the wood will burn regardless?

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    Diamond Member adrianh's Avatar
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    That lot must have been written by a company that manufactures plastic pallets. What makes furniture made from recycled pallets more dangerous than furniture made from pine off the shelf. Companies like CHEP track and manage millions of wooden pallets each day.

    A stupid website written by a stupid American for stupid Americans to read!
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    I believe any treated or painted wood should be handled with caution, but I agree I get the feel this person writing that blog must have a share in a plastic pallet company.

    I would assume you would treat pallet wood the same as roof rafter wood for example.

    Personally I wouldn't make a biltong drier box, a chopping board or use either as firewood.

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    Diamond Member adrianh's Avatar
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    Yes, of course there is no way of knowing what chemicals or toxins the pallet may have been exposed to, but then there is no way of knowing whether the guy sharing his sandwich with you washes his dishes. Of course everything in life hold dangers and of course one should treat secondhand wood with due care but I do not think that one needs to go overboard!
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    I was reading this article and found it rather interesting. Maybe you need to be weary of where you get your pallets...ie don't go to the local supermarket and collect pallet there is you want to build stuff for your kids bedroom or a dining room table. I ask myself this question, what is more dangerous the chemicals they use to treat wood or the bugs themselves.

    http://www.cupboardsonline.com/2013/...on-part-2.html

    IF you going to worry about all this, what about plywood, now open another can of worms because of the glue, is the ply wood treated and so it just goes on and on.

    Here is a question...what would be more dangerous living next to highway with the fumes from the vehicles which make my curtains black or a few pieces of furniture made out of crates?

    This thread has got me thinking, I will be throwing my dust/particle refill for the respirator away and in the future only using the gas refill.

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    Diamond Member adrianh's Avatar
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    I would consider caring when lots of people in Goodwood start to die from "Palletitis & Plywoodlitis" I couldn't care less till then.
    How easily someone is offended is directly proportional to how stupid they are.
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    Gold Member Dave S's Avatar
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    Talking about recycled wood, have you seen how many people are using old railway sleepers to make furniture? Some people even make dining room tables from it, obviously, there hasn't been much thought put into it. Where do these sleepers come from? Below the train rails, and when one flushes a toilet on the old trains, where do the "flushings" go? Down onto the tracks and the sleepers, where they soak into the wood over an extended period. Yes, the beautiful dining room table that was made means one is eating a meal on top of someone's old faeces? I'd hate to think how many diseases this wood carries with it, perish the thought.
    Today Defines Tomorrow
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    Diamond Member adrianh's Avatar
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    @DaveS...I think that your argument is rather absurd.

    Have you ever been in the kitchen of a large restaurant or take away place, do you go to a public bathroom, do you press the button in an elevator? I would far rather have 30 year old crap sealed into my dining room table that Philemon's stinky butt scratching finger on my KFC!
    How easily someone is offended is directly proportional to how stupid they are.
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