NEW! Google Custom Search

Loading

Butcher Block Care & Feeding

BossHog's picture

Butcher Block Care & Feeding (post #56351)

A couple of days ago my Mom gave me this butcher block:

Apparently my Dad gave it to her shortly after they were married 52 years ago. She doesn't use it any more, and was gonna throw it out.

I said I'd take it, as I think it's kinda neat. But I don't really know what to do to preserve it.

I have some tung oil, but I don't think you're supposed to use that on stuff that food might come into contact with. Maybe I could use it on the bottom, then use something else on the top?

I was thinking about sanding the top a bit to smooth it out before I finished it. Any reason I shouldn't do that?

TIA for any thoughts....

There are no stupid questions but there are a LOT of inquisitive idiots



BossHog's picture

(post #56351, reply #38 of 70)

Dang - Yours s bigger 'n mine.

(I'll probably get sent to the corner again for saying that)

(-:

Q: How is being at a singles bar different than being at the circus?
A: At the circus, the clowns don't talk.



Gretchen's picture

(post #56351, reply #39 of 70)

I don't think the oil had anything to do with it, FWIW. That is too bad, but, fortunately, in your hands, it is fixable.

Gretchen

Gretchen
BossHog's picture

(post #56351, reply #40 of 70)

Hard to say, but I think the oil had something to do with it.

There was already a small crack. If oil seeped in at one location more than another, it may have just barely been enough to make the wood swell up until it split.

Or maybe it had ALREADY split, but had partially closed up when it dried out at some point in time.

Given the age of the thing and the fact that it's been wet many times, needing to re-glue it isn't at all unreasonable.

Life has a hill. Get over it.



MadMom's picture

(post #56351, reply #41 of 70)

I think the oil might have caused some swelling, but agree with Gretchen that the crack was probably already there, and that you can fix it.  The board is beautiful, though, and it looks like it's cracked along a joint, so probably it was caused by many years of use.  Fix it, use it, and be happy!


And, of course, you're welcome at the corner anytime.  SallyBR and I have assigned seats, but anyone else just sits where they like!




Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!
Gretchen's picture

(post #56351, reply #42 of 70)

I just don't think it would happen in that time, and I'm not sure oil causes swelling, and certainly not that fast.  Anyway, since you say the crack was already there, it was "on the way", and that laminate of glue had probably just dried out somehow, and the clamp strained it.  Better now than in the middle of dinner!!


And I still say, if you want to even out that color, bleach will do it, and then it will be uniform for your oil treatment.


I have taken to using a thin plastic mat on my board when cutting meat and poultry to cut down on the cleaning. As I say, mine is counter top and in absolute constant use.  I think I'm getting ready to do the oil and paraffin treatment and see how that does hold up--the method butchers use on their blocks.


Gretchen
Gretchen
Marie Louise's picture

(post #56351, reply #43 of 70)

The Boos oil also contains paraffin, IIRC. And tung oil, which strengthens wood, right?

Why take the chance heating up flammable materials in your kitchen? For a few extra bucks, you can just buy a bottle of the oil made by the leading butcher block maker in the US. The only reason not to use it is if you don't want a darker color, as the tung oil in the Mystery Oil will darken the board. That made the maple match my cabinets, but of course that color isn't for everyone.

Gretchen's picture

(post #56351, reply #44 of 70)

Nope, wood is "dead". Nothing "strengthens" it past what it was when chosen for its strength--like maple. Close grained and strong. Oil does not "feed" it either.


It isn't a big problem to heat paraffin. Have done it for years when it was the way to close jelly jars.


Leaving NO finish on boards is also a possibility, and what I use because I clean mine so much.


Gretchen
Gretchen
Marie Louise's picture

(post #56351, reply #46 of 70)

To each his own.

Gretchen's picture

(post #56351, reply #47 of 70)

I don't mind doing it--and mine is not a Boos block, so I choose not to spend money on  their oil. But I did tell you the facts about wood properties. And there are other ways of treating cutting boards.


The market is full of things for furniture with names like "Finish Feeder", etc. which are nothing but trouble for finishes, in some cases, containing silicones, and being dust magnets.  ;o)


 


Gretchen
Gretchen
Marie Louise's picture

(post #56351, reply #48 of 70)

Their oil is 5.95 a bottle, hardly going to break your bank as compared to the cheaper mineral oil. Yet every time anyone suggests anything but what you use, you feel compelled to go on and on about why you are right.

As for my choice of words... I'm not going there with you. You can be the smarter one.

FL.Cook's picture

(post #56351, reply #54 of 70)

Where do you find it?  I tried BB&B but they don't carry it in the store, and it is out of stock on the website.  Every other web site charges a lot for shipping.

Carole

Carole
Marie Louise's picture

(post #56351, reply #57 of 70)

I've bought it at places that sell countertops, hardware stores, kitchen stores....

Last time I ordered a bunch of bottles from amazon. I do think I had to pay for shipping, but I bought "a lifetime supply" so it was okay.

FL.Cook's picture

(post #56351, reply #58 of 70)

Thanks, I'll keep checking around.

Carole

Carole
PeterDurand's picture

(post #56351, reply #45 of 70)

Sorry about your board. However oil does not swell wood. Water does. I suspect that the glue simply broke down due to some bleaching in the past or old age. Some soap formulations (think dishwasher type stuff) will definitely break down a glue joint. It happens. It is however an easy fix.

A solid glue clamp-up and some sanding will make it as good as new.

Cheers,

Peter

 


Better life through Zoodles and poutine...
JAlden's picture

(post #56351, reply #49 of 70)

have to make a trip through the table saw to even up the edges


Boss, you know better than that. Joiner or hand plane. The saw kerfs won't be flat enough for a glue joint.

BossHog's picture

(post #56351, reply #50 of 70)

I do have a jointer. But I'm concerned about tearout when I reach the end, since I'd be jointing across the grain.

My hands aren't steady enough with a hand plane to try that.

I have Freud saw blades that make a pretty danged good kerf. Since I won't be cutting all the way through the block, that's my first choice.



JAlden's picture

(post #56351, reply #51 of 70)

Good point about the tearout.


It's a nice board so good luck with it.


How are things? Boys good? When do you leave for NO?

BossHog's picture

(post #56351, reply #55 of 70)

Aside from being laid off, things are OK.

The boys are doing fine. I'm at my GF's house for the weekend.

I leave for Louisiana on February 15th. I'm really looking forward to it.



MadMom's picture

(post #56351, reply #56 of 70)

Did I miss something?  Why are you going to Louisiana, and where?  Lots of good eating in that part of the world.



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

BossHog's picture

(post #56351, reply #59 of 70)

I haven't mentioned the trip here on CT, which is why you haven't heard about it.

I'm going to Slidell, Louisiana the last 2 weeks of February. (Slidell is just north of New Orleans + Lake Pontchartrain)

I'll be working with the Presbyterian Community Outreach, repairing houses damaged in Hurricane Katrina. Here's the website: http://pcoslidell.org/

I was down there in January of 2008 for a week and really enjoyed the experience. This time I'm going back for two weeks. The first time I went with a church group. This time I'm going alone.

So that's it in a nutshell. If you want more details let me know.



MadMom's picture

(post #56351, reply #60 of 70)

We used to live in Slidell, lived at several houses there, the last one was at Eden Isles.  I expected it to be demolished in the hurricane, but it was still standing.  The man two doors down from us still had a FEMA trailer two years after the storm.  Crazy.  Have a good trip.  Those people need a lot of help, and the government isn't going to give it to them.



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

BossHog's picture

(post #56351, reply #61 of 70)

The house I worked on last year belonged to a single Mom with 3 kids. One of the kids was born just days after the hurricane, and had never lived anywhere but a FEMA trailer.

Offhand I'd say at least 90% of the houses looked fine at that point in time. Just a few odd FEMA trailers in places. But it looked pretty good overall.

I've heard that Habitat for Humanity said that they figure they'll be there for 10 years after the hurricane. But I got that 2nd hand, so I wouldn't swear to it.

As to whether the government has done enough - I'd rather leave the politics out of this thread.



MadMom's picture

(post #56351, reply #62 of 70)

I was down there on the second anniversary of the hurricane, and was amazed at the devastation.  There were lots of FEMA trailers still around, and whole neighborhoods, particularly in the Ninth Ward and Chalmette, which were full of abandoned houses.  The thing which amazed me was that in the middle of all the horror, you would see a neat little home which had been rebuilt, with a nice yard, flowers, etc.  It just didn't seem to fit.  I wondered if maybe some people just took the insurance money and went elsewhere, or decided not to rebuild, or if some companies were just that slow in paying.  Also wondered where the people in the one rebuilt house would shop, get some milk when they ran out, etc. 


My eldest DD and DSIL and I discussed the hurricane shortly after it hit (they're from Mandeville) and we all agreed that there needed to be a plan for the rebuilding of New Orleans, but we also agreed that any plan would be politically based and probably more to line someone's pockets than to benefit the population in general.




Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!
BossHog's picture

(post #56351, reply #63 of 70)

I finally got the block put back together and got a couple more coats of oil on the thing. I was surprised at how much oil it soaked up.

You can't even tell where I jointed the two pieces of the block and put them back together. It did take a bit of sanding, but it worked out great.

Here's how it looks now:

Just for comparison, here's the "before" picture from the first post:

Thanks to all of you who offered thoughts about what to do with the block.



PreviewAttachmentSize
Butcher_Block_Final.JPG
Butcher_Block_Final.JPG83.95 KB
Marie Louise's picture

(post #56351, reply #64 of 70)

It looks more beautiful than ever!

My BB soaked up lots of oil at first. After months of oiling it every few weeks, it doesn't soak up so much. Of course, mine is in the direct sun every day...and it is 4 inches thick!

kathymcmo's picture

(post #56351, reply #65 of 70)

Wow it looks just fantastic! Nice job. You should get a lot of enjoyment working with it, given its history and your efforts to revive it.

Jean's picture

(post #56351, reply #66 of 70)

Gorgeous.


What was the best thing before sliced bread?



http://www.thebreastcancersite.com/

A  clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.
http://www.thebreastcancersite.com/
help to provide free mammograms for women in need
MadMom's picture

(post #56351, reply #67 of 70)

Absolutely gorgeous!  You did a great job putting it back together, and it came out really beautiful.



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

Sondra's picture

(post #56351, reply #68 of 70)

A thing of beauty, Boss.  Nice job, and a tresure for generations to come.

roz's picture

(post #56351, reply #69 of 70)

You did a fantastic job! Looks great and hope it suits your needs as well.

Be impeccable with your word. Don't take anything personally. Don't make assumptions. Do your best. Don Miguel Ruiz