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Implement Alley Discussion Forum

Wooden Axle Rot Prevention?

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fpappal

10-09-2018 04:43:53




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I am looking for suggestions to prevent my new wooden axles from rotting. The wood is hickory. The wagon will be put in the barn during the winter, but the rest of the year it will be outside. I can obviously paint them, however after the wagon is built it is not going to be so easy to keep painting them. Maybe some sort of oil? Should the tapered ends in which the skeins fit over be treated with something special? Once those skeins go on they are on there forever.

Thanks.

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RodInNS

10-13-2018 09:27:52




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 Re: Wooden Axle Rot Prevention? in reply to fpappal, 10-09-2018 04:43:53  
Coat it in boiled linseed oil. That will seal/protect it while keeping the wood grain visible so you can monitor it's condition wheras paint would obscure that. However, if you're not worried about keeping an eye on the condition of the wood, by all means paint it.

Rod



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Leroy

10-12-2018 17:53:52




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 Re: Wooden Axle Rot Prevention? in reply to fpappal, 10-09-2018 04:43:53  
You do realize that when new they were painted with I think an oil base pant, if not oil not sure what it would have been based on. Several wood gears and all were painted from new.



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DoubleO7

10-11-2018 07:32:17




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 Re: Wooden Axle Rot Prevention? in reply to fpappal, 10-09-2018 04:43:53  
I bet back in the old days, when they re-greased the spindles, they wiped the old grease off their hands and smeared it all over the wood axle.



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MJMJ

10-11-2018 06:13:08




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 Re: Wooden Axle Rot Prevention? in reply to fpappal, 10-09-2018 04:43:53  
Hickory has always been traditional for those applications. Sure, it's not the most weather resistant, but if you treat it right it'll last for decades.



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RJKeith

10-11-2018 05:06:13




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 Re: Wooden Axle Rot Prevention? in reply to fpappal, 10-09-2018 04:43:53  
As others have stated, hickory doesn't hold up well to weather. Use Black Locust if you can find it, or white oak, especially chestnut oak or post oak, both white varieties and all as strong as hickory.



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fpappal

10-11-2018 06:03:17




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 Re: Wooden Axle Rot Prevention? in reply to RJKeith, 10-11-2018 05:06:13  
The axles have been made and it took me HOURS. A few have told me hickory rots, but others have told me that is what they should be made of. I tried to attach an old ad for wooden axles, not sure if it will attach or not. The ad is for "Turned Hickory Axles". Why would they use hickory back then if it was not the best choice for the application?

https://speccoll.library.arizona.edu/sites/default/files/styles/ual-large-16-9/public/AZ%20561_Folder%201_1910_Wagon%20parts%20catalog%20from%20Cray%20Brothers%2C%20Cleveland%2C%20Ohio%2C%20March%201910.jpg?itok=pCKAFBHD

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Leroy

10-12-2018 17:50:48




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 Re: Wooden Axle Rot Prevention? in reply to fpappal, 10-11-2018 06:03:17  
Bend strength, It will hold up better in the bending than the other woods. Same reason ax handles are made of hickory. And the axles under load would get a lot of that bend same as wood spokes in the wheel. And at that time everybody that could kept the wagons inside out of the weather.



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Bret4207

10-10-2018 06:48:59




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 Re: Wooden Axle Rot Prevention? in reply to fpappal, 10-09-2018 04:43:53  
Anything wood you want to last needs to be undercover as much as possible. I've learned this the expen$$$ive way.



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2x4

10-09-2018 21:32:17




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 Re: Wooden Axle Rot Prevention? in reply to fpappal, 10-09-2018 04:43:53  
Hickory does not hold up to the weather very well. Its heartwood (brown)is better than the sapwood (white) , which will rot quickly. Soaking it in creosote would help but that prolly can't be done any more. Lumber yard may have some ideas.



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fpappal

10-10-2018 04:03:08




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 Re: Wooden Axle Rot Prevention? in reply to 2x4, 10-09-2018 21:32:17  
When I started this little project hickory was recommended because of its strength. Even old price lists I have found from the early 1900s advertised hickory. You would think if the wood rots so quickly they would have used a different species. Maybe I will be keeping it in the barn more often than not. Thanks.



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c.amick

10-09-2018 17:40:39




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 Re: Wooden Axle Rot Prevention? in reply to fpappal, 10-09-2018 04:43:53  
I would treat them with a wood preservative then shrink wrap the ends or maybe the whole thing.



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Bill M. from Illinois

10-09-2018 17:33:21




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 Re: Wooden Axle Rot Prevention? in reply to fpappal, 10-09-2018 04:43:53  
I have found that boiled linseed oil turns black after a while and I don't use it. The best I have found is Woodlife Classic wood preservative. It is thin and soaks in good.



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fpappal

10-09-2018 17:36:01




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 Re: Wooden Axle Rot Prevention? in reply to Bill M. from Illinois, 10-09-2018 17:33:21  
How often do you have to reapply the Woodlife? Thanks for the comments.



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Bill M. from Illinois

10-09-2018 18:39:57




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 Re: Wooden Axle Rot Prevention? in reply to fpappal, 10-09-2018 17:36:01  
If kept inside during winter , once a season would be plenty. It can easily be applied with a small pump up sprayer. A small bottle sprayer will work also with less waste but slower.



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Jon Erickson

10-09-2018 16:26:17




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 Re: Wooden Axle Rot Prevention? in reply to fpappal, 10-09-2018 04:43:53  
I agree with Michael. Also, I would brush the linseed oil into the wood after spraying it on.



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Michael Soldan

10-09-2018 05:31:32




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 Re: Wooden Axle Rot Prevention? in reply to fpappal, 10-09-2018 04:43:53  
Use boiled linseed oil and mix it 50/50 with varsol or paint thinner. You can put it in your garden sprayer and spray it on once a year.



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