Jarrah Wood as a fireplace mantle

24 Oct 2013
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United Kingdom
Hi all,

I'm in the process of building a brick fireplace for a woodburner and have been looking for a nice Oak beam to rest on top. Unfortunately there is a lack of salvage yards near me and a nice Oak beam will mean lots of cash and a big travel.

At a builders yard I have found some untreated Jarrah wood sleepers. I've never heard of this wood before but its a hardwood and looks pretty nice. Do people think this is a suitable wood for this type of application? The thing that worries me is that the yard don't know how how long the wood has been seasoned for and its currently stored outside in the rain. Would I need to store it indoors for some time before I could use it?

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I bought oak sleepers £75 each for a coffee table , took two years to dry completely and stop shrinking.
Depends how wet the timber has become [Jarrah common in OZ]
If its a used sleeper, it's well seasoned, it may not be dry on the surface but it will be usable. I personally would planing it first (both sides) stand it indoors in a not hot, dry environment and check it for cracking over a few weeks, that should prove whether it's seasoned or not...pinenot :)
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If it's a used sleeper it will give off poisonous fumes in heat, only new untreated sleepers can be used indoors.

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