Tuesday, May 30, 2006

IT had to happen. Sooner or later Classie Corner had get back on one of its favourite subjects, wood.
Forget about the recent dog fetish. Wood doesn’t bark at night and chase cars.
Readers will have to suffer a spate of wood stories from the archives and realtime. This one from the Coffs Harbour Advocate in 2001:

NOSES often turn up at the mention of oregon, a timber whose Australian popularity has gone up and down since the colonial days.
In the past few decades many householders along the east coast have faced the costly expense of replacing pergolas built with plantation oregon that was unsuitable for external applications.
The sight of rot around the nailholes or at a simple butt joint where the moisture couldn’t run off certainly would turn anyone with a hardwood heritage off the imported timber.
But that’s not the sort of oregon that Paula Fursman’s Resurrection Recyclers specialises in.
Her firm chases the best – the oregon that came from the North American old growth forests many decades ago and that is highly prized by furniture makers.
Paula says it’s easy to tell the difference between the old timber and the plantation types.
“The good quality type has growth rings just one to two millimetres apart but the plantation timber has the rings wide apart and is light in weight and colour,” she says.
Resurrection gets most of its old oregon from the demolition of old houses in Sydney, which Paula says benefited for many decades from countless “backloads” on ships from Canada.
“They used it as ballast and at one stage virtually dumped it on the Sydney wharves for people to help themselves,’’ Paula says.
“Half of Sydney was built out of it.”
About half a dozen north coast furniture makers get their oregon from Resurrection.
Paula and husband John Lacey bought the recycling firm about four years ago as a “complementary” business to their earthmoving company which operates from the next door site.
The couple came from north Queensland. John has done a lot of work as a white water raft guide in addition to building up John Lacey Earthmoving, which runs two excavators, three trucks, three backhoes and a bobcat.
Resurrection Recyclers opened in 1981. Paula says she has benefited from a lot of the knowledge of the former owner.
Oregon, of course, is just one of the many recycled building materials on offer.
There’s lots of hardwood, and this time of year even firewood is on offer.
How’s this? Keep warm this winter with a fire of century-old mahogany.
Damaged and checked timber goes through the saw to provide firewood in handy sizes for just $28 to fill a 6 by 4 trailer.

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