Tuesday, August 15, 2006

"Piece of crap"


"Piece Of Crap"

Tried to save the trees
Bought a plastic bag
The bottom fell out
It was a piece of crap

Saw it on the tube
Bought it on the phone
Now you're home alone
It's a piece of crap

I tried to plug in it
I tried to turn it on
When I got it home
It was a piece of crap

Got it from a friend
On him you can depend
I found out in the end
It was a piece of crap

I'm trying to save the trees
I saw it on TV
They cut the forest down
To build a piece of crap

I went back to the store
They gave me four more
The guy told me at the door
It's a piece of crap

Neil Young

They cut the forest down to build a piece of crap! Indeed! The photo is of plywood that I received for the purpose of building some cabinets. The lumber company in question has been supplying me with materials for years. They know what what I build and they know what is suitable yet they offered me this when I called and asked for some "B" grade wood that would be finished with plastic laminate. At $22 a sheet for 3/4", without seeing it first, I decided to try it. The outside veneer didn't look very good, it was not "B" quality (some plugs and small knotholes allowed) but I thought I could still make it work. But then I started cutting it and there were huge voids in the core and the gluelines were delaminating in places. After a close look at the core with all of its defects, I turned off the saw and called the sales rep. He told me that it is NOT recommended for anything but sub-floor but they would take it back and replace it with something better. This stuff is so bad it's virtually useless for anything but crates and at $22 per sheet, it is too expensive for that. Looking at the core of the stuff, it appears to be the result of clearcutting. Layers of small narrow pieces are mixed in with larger pieces and then the whole wad is glued and crushed down into a mat that is then heavily sanded to make it flat and ready for the outside veneer. It is a shame they even bothered with it. A total waste of the materials and most likely a total waste of the environment it came from. This stuff as well as most other hardwood plywood now comes from South America where the forest is still somewhat abundant and labor is cheap. Not for long though. Most of the import plywood used to come from Indonesia. Not anymore. For years there were rumors that the forests there were becoming depleted, 50-60% by some estimates and the shift to South America indicates the truth to that. The tidal wave a couple of years ago probably also disrupted the supply line. But in any event, I've never seen plywood this bad before. It sucks that they're cutting down the forest to build crap. What a waste! Years ago, I stopped using Phillipine mahogany ply because it was coming from Borneo, the last remaining habitat of the Orangutan. I switched to a product that was stamped "Made in China" thinking that China is a bigger country and it could stand some cutting without any great harm. Wrong! Not only is China one of the most environmentally degraded areas in the world, but then I found out the wood "Obeche" actually came from the last remaining rainforest in Nigeria. Illegally cut and removed by a large mining outfit from Austrailia. I try to use MDF( cabinet grade particleboard) now whenever possible. It's not a glamorous product but it is environmentally friendly and can be made into quality products if done right. Besides I might as well get used to it because the days of abundant quality materials is a thing of the past.

What have they done to the earth?
What have they done to our fair sister?
Ravaged and plundered and ripped her and bit her
Stuck her with knives in the side of the dawn
And tied her with fences and dragged her down

Jim Morrison

3 Comments:

At 8/15/2006 7:28 PM, Blogger wishblog said...

Which is why i use as much salvaged and local wood as possible... I hate the idea of "virgin forest rosewood harvested at the dark of the moon from the north side of the sacred mountain." If course you and me used up a lot of rosewood, almost enough to make a nice table, i suppose.

But you are right, the plywood is getting worse every day.


BTW, did i ever tell you i planted 250,000 loblolly pine tries for 5 and a half cents each?..

 
At 8/16/2006 7:46 AM, Blogger Paul said...

Loblolly pine.......a nice choice and a very generous contribution to the earth at a cost of $13,750. Thank you!

Loblolly Pine is the most important and widely cultivated timber species in the southern United States. Because it grows rapidly on a wide range of sites, it is extensively planted for lumber and pulpwood. This tree is dominant on 11.7 million hectares (29 million acres) and comprises over half of the standing pine volume in the south. A medium lived tree, loblolly matures in about 150 years, with select trees reaching 300 years in age. Sonderegger pine (Pinus × sondereggeri H.H. Chapm.) is a natural hybrid between loblolly pine and longleaf pine (Pinus palustris Mill.), and occurs throughout the southeast.

Human uses: Furniture, pulpwood, plywood, composite boards, posts, poles, pilings, crates, boxes, pallets. Loblolly is also planted to stabilize eroded or damaged soils. It can be used for shade or ornamental trees, as well as bark mulch.

Animal uses: Food, cover. White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus), gray squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis), fox squirrel (Sciurus niger), bobwhite quail (Colinus virginianus), and wild turkey (Meleagris gallopavo) all utilize both pure and mixed loblolly stands for shelter. Red-cockaded woodpeckers (Picoides borealis) also use these trees for foraging habitat and nesting, as do a variety of other bird species such as pine warbler (Dendroica pinus), brown-headed nuthatch (Sitta pusilla), and Bachman's warbler (Vermivora bachmanii). Seeds are also eaten for food by sondbirds and small mammals. Standing dead trees are frequently used for cavity nests by woodpeckers.

 
At 8/16/2006 5:58 PM, Blogger wishblog said...

Not my choice... I would have done pecans, but they paid for lobs..

 

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