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Question

I was wanting to find out if Blackbutt timber battens are certified non combustible under AS1530.1.

Woodsolutions Answer

Unfortunately no timber is classed as 'non-combustible' when tested to Australian Standard 1530 Part 1: Combustibility test for materials. The test involves placing specimens in a furnace at approximately 750°C, at which temperature they must produce only a limited amount of heat and flame. However, blackbutt is one of the seven species classed as 'bushfire-resistant' in accordance with AS 3959:2018 if that is any help.

Answered on : 22 Jun 2022
Please note that our answer is based on the best advice available at the time. If the National Construction Code, Australian Standards or local requirements have been subsequently amended, our answer may no longer be correct in all details. For more information, please read our disclaimer.
Question

Are bark chips usually treated? If so, is it safe to grow fruit trees and vegetables on areas where bark chips have been, and to allow chickens to forage there?

Woodsolutions Answer

Debarking is the first operation in a sawmill, before logs are cut up for sawn timber, or peeled for veneer production. Preservative treatments are applied at a later stage, after removal of the bark, so it is unlikely that bark chips from a sawmill would contain any chemicals that would leach out into the soil. However, if the bark chips were in place for a long time they might have taken nitrogen from the soil as they started to break down. This could affect the future growth of some plants. However, we don't have expertise in soil treatment and suggest you seek further advice from a plant nursery.

Answered on : 16 Jun 2022
Please note that our answer is based on the best advice available at the time. If the National Construction Code, Australian Standards or local requirements have been subsequently amended, our answer may no longer be correct in all details. For more information, please read our disclaimer.
Question

I need some help in finding out about thermo treated timber for Australian Market such as decking, flooring and cladding. Do these need to be treated to Australian standards? If so where can I enquire for testing certifications etc...?

Woodsolutions Answer

Thermally modified timber is not currently included in any Australian Standards, and has not been tested by Australian research bodies as far as we are aware. It has been tested by Scion Forest Products in New Zealand (comparable to our CSIRO) and the results of exposure tests conducted by Scion can be found on this website https://www.tunnicliffes.co.nz/thermowood-.html. Note that the test program only included material treated at 230 degrees C. Thermally modified wood has also been extensively tested in various European countries. You will find a discussion about thermally modified wood and its potential in the Australian market in a report titled Review of New and Emerging International Wood Modification Technologies, published by Forest and Wood Products Australia. A copy can be downloaded via this link https://www.fwpa.com.au/images/marketaccess/Review_of_wood_modification_technologies_FWPA_2015_final.pdf. Local suppliers of thermally modified wood may be able to provide additional data.

Answered on : 15 Jun 2022
Please note that our answer is based on the best advice available at the time. If the National Construction Code, Australian Standards or local requirements have been subsequently amended, our answer may no longer be correct in all details. For more information, please read our disclaimer.
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