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Tung Nuts Are Toxic

Re: "Tung Oil Nontoxic?" ("Letters," AW »38). I have been a coatings chemist for nearly 40 years, and I feel I must make a comment about tung oil: Variations in the climate can make the oil from tung trees less toxic some years than others, but it is toxic nonetheless, unless it is chemically treated very carefully. The more the treatment, the less the toxicity and the more expensive the oil.

I would not finish a food-contact item unless the finish is approved by the Food and Drug Administration for that purpose.

W.R. Home Coatings chemist

Chuluota, FL

The tung nut is not edible and neither is tung oil, whether it is "100 percent pure" or combined with other ingredients such as solvents or driers. According to Tom Brown of the FDA, "We /the FDA/ have been aware for years and years that people have been ¡using tung oil on wooden ware J and we've never had any complaints about it, but we really can't say anything because we've never thoroughly studied the issue."

Dandy Dust-Collection Article

Thanks for the highly informative articles on dust collection (AW »37). I will be building my own cyclone pre-collector and your air flow formulas and safety precautions solved my major design concerns.

Tom Ptasznik

Windsor. CT

Ire Over Pink Ivory

After I finished reading issue »38 of your magazine, I wondered how you can justify the dichotomy and the irony of the "Offcuf titled "Biggest

Ivor)' Out of Africa" and the article by Scott Landis titled "Forests in Crisis." While I do not necessarily subscribe to all of Landis* theories regarding deforestation, the use of a one-of-a-kind pink ivory log for turning validates his underlying theme of irresponsible use of tropical woods.

Turning is perhaps woodworking's single greatest waste of wood, with 90 percent plus of the blank ending in shavings under the lathe. By the look of the two pieces you featured (pages 12 and 53) as turnings from the pink ivory log, I find further cause to question your judgment, since these two pieces are at best a sterile attempt to use a beautiful wood to justify lack of inspiration and harmony of form. Further, I find Cummings' turning "Passion Fire" effete and overworked.

Had the log been made into veneer, scores of woodworkers would have been able to participate in perpetuating this rare and beautiful wood, mostly in worthwhile projects. Your magazine's unintended glorification of using the log for turning rather than for veneer or small cuttings lor inlays, etc. is hardly responsible journalism.

I wish that I could say, "keep up the good work."

Jose A. Caubet Sonoma County Woodworkers Assoc.

Santa Rosa, CA

We reported on the large pink ivory log as a news item and refrained from editorializing on the environmental ramifications. For the record[ it's not our intention to advocate or endorse consumption of tropical woods. Neither is it our intention to vilify woodworkers wfx) choose to use exotics. We do hope to make woodworkers aware of the world timber situation so they can make informed decisions about what wood to buy.


to production errors, on page 40 of our "Buyer's Guide to Bandsaws" (AW *38) we used the wrong photo for the Skil HI) 3640

handsaw (above). Also, the photo of the Grizzly G1073 (right) should have indicated it was a Best Buy. Finally, the correct mtxlcl number for Jet's new 14-in. handsaw is WBS-14CS.

The "Pennsylvania Spice Box" article (AW *36) contained two dimensional errors. In Fig. 4, the length of the door panel should be 11/6 in. from tenon shoulder to tenon shoulder. In Fig. 2, the height of the box should be 21n/i6 in. Also note the drawer dividers shown in Fig. 2 arc Vi6 in. thick. The '/»-in. dimension shown on the drawing indicates the portion of the top drawer divider that will show when the overhanging fascia is in place.

Paying Attention Is Essential Too

Re: "A Saw Guard Is Essential" ("Letters." AW #37). I think the essential message was missed, and that is: Don't work with machinery if you're tired or distracted. Six or seven years ago my mother was admitted to the hospital and after spending the day with her, my dad came home and decided to make a small jewelry box for her. Because he was tired and distracted, he planed the last three fingers off his right hand. Wrhcn I was first starting to work with Dad he told


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Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

There are a lot of things that either needs to be repaired, or put together when youre a homeowner. If youre a new homeowner, and have just gotten out of apartment style living, you might want to take this list with you to the hardware store. From remolding jobs to putting together furniture you can use these 5 power tools to get your stuff together. Dont forget too that youll need a few extra tools for other jobs around the house.

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