Saturday, 8 May 2010

Recycled wood

Wood lends itself naturally to being recycled, reused and salvaged - which means that there is no excuse for the fact that wood, together with plastic, makes up the greatest proportion of what is dumped in landfill sites. In recent years gone by, many building materials were reused time and again and it was not uncommon, for example, for ships' timbers to find their way into domestic homes as beams and mantlepieces.
In many instances, recycling can begin at home. We can renovate old floorboards, rather than installing a new floor covering. Similarly, by upgrading fitted kitchens and other types of storage by retaining the carcases and simply replacing the doors and drawer fronts. If you are bringing reclaimed wood into your home, make sure that it does not harbour woodworm or any other infestation

Types of reclaimed wood
  • Salvaged wooden features and fittings, such as doors, panelling and fireplaces. Good sources are architectural salvage yards, antiques markets and similar oulets. If made of softwood, such features are often available stripped of old finishes. Hardwood features and fittings tend to be rarer and more expensive as a result.
  • Reclaimed floorboards and other types of wood flooring. Old boards can be denailed and remilled to even out dimensions and provide a smoother surface. Antique parquet, particularly if the provenance is known, is highly sought after because of its unique patina and is correspondingly costly.
  • Railway sleepers can be used in the garden to make pathways or terraces and to enclose areas of raised planting

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