IRG Documents Database and Compendium


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Principles and procedure of the planeing test
1981 - IRG/WP 2162
Small end-sealed samples of pine-sapwood (1.5 x 2.5 x 5 cm³) are treated by brushing and afterwards different parts of the treated surface are removed. The remaining part of the sample is tested against either insects or fungi. If no attack occurs sufficient amounts of biocides have been penetrated at least beyond the zone which has been removed. In spite of some problems the test seems the only suitable method, to evaluate organic solvent preservatives, mainly those containing resins, for simple treating methods.
H Willeitner, M Gersonde


Tanalith T - a new preservative system for protecting house frames in Australia from termite attack.
2003 - IRG/WP 03-30306
The sawn timber industry in Australia has expressed a desire for a new low cost termite treatment. The treatment needs to be on-line in the dry mill, minimising material handling costs and with a very fast processing time to meet timber flow through the dry mill. The preservative, Tanalith® T, forms an envelope on both Pinus radiata and Pinus elliotti sawn timber. Field trials conducted in Australia have confirmed this envelope will protect house framing timber from the most economically important termites in Australia. This paper reviews other research topics carried out during the development of Tanalith® T as a suitable preservative system for termite protection.
P R S Cobham, J Snow


A technique for assessing the preventive efficacy against decay fungi of preservative treatments applied to wood
1988 - IRG/WP 2309
A method is described in which test blocks with envelope preservative treatments can be challenged by selected test fungi previously established on an untreated feeder block. The progress of the test fungus through the treated zone is monitored using novel baits or sensors inserted in holes drilled into blocks to within predetermined distances of the face being challenged. Preliminary results show the method to be discriminating. Three minute immersion treatment with 5% PCP retarded colonisation for a longer period than 1% TnBTO particularly when penetration was in the tangential direction.
J K Carey, A F Bravery


Controlled envelope treatments of Pinus sapwood, achieved by modifications to impregnation process and carrier solvents
2003 - IRG/WP 03-40258
Specimens of slash pine or radiata pine were treated to a target retention of 0.02% m/m permethrin with conventional light organic solvent fluids or with oil-modified fluids (Tanalith® T). Best achievable envelopes from LOSP fluids were poorly controlled, penetrating not only the target outer 0-5 mm zone (mean 0.019%, RSD 28%), but also breaking through into the 5-10 mm zone (mean 0.013%, RSD 37%) and further into the >10 mm zone (mean 0.011%, RSD 52%). With the oil-modified fluids, the target 0-5 mm zone received a mean retention of 0.024% (RSD 30%), with 0.003% (RSD 44%) in the 5-10 mm zone and <0.002% the >10 mm zone. This tight control of toxicant distribution facilitates economical termite control.
M J Kennedy, P R S Cobham


The preventive effectiveness of preservative treatments against wood-rotting fungi. Preliminary results
1992 - IRG/WP 92-2407
The efficacy of a range of preservative treatments in preventing colonisation by decay fungi has been assessed using a method developed at BRE and similar to that adopted by Working Group 9 of European Standards Committee CEN/TC 38. Assessment was made using baits inserted into the test blocks, in holes which had been drilled after treatment to within defined distances of the treated face exposed to the test fungus. Preliminary results are presented to show differences in the rate of colonisation caused by timber orientation, species of test fungus and the application rate and method of application of the test preservative. The results indicate that in the preventive test, Gloeophyllum trabeum is more tolerant of preservatives, in comparison with Coniophora puteana, than would be expected from results generated using the EN 113 test method. In addition, the data suggest that the critical value derived from EN 113 tests may not give a reliable indication of the amount of chemical required in the outer zones of the treated wood to provide effective protection in the preventive test.
J K Carey


Issues Facing Wood Preservation in Australia Today
2003 - IRG/WP 03-30327
Timber and timber products are a major part of the Australian building industry and preservative treatment is a common consideration for most timber users. Despite this however, there is a major lack of awareness by the users of the various issues associated with preservative treatment. Australian treatment specifications are logical, concise and uncomplicated. There are three agencies in Australia that set specifications for treated timber and although the various requirements are well coordinated, the different jurisdictions vary in the extent to which treated timber quality is monitored. Recent developments in Australia have seen increased usage of engineered wood products and this has bought with it a shift in the thinking behind timber treatment requirements. Along with approval of glue line treatments, the most recent initiative has been the use of envelope treatments for the protection of house framing against termites. There are a limited number of wood preservative formulations currently approved for use in Australia and over recent years there has been increased erosion of market dominance by copper, chrome arsenic (CCA) wood preservatives. It is likely that pressure on the use of CCA will see this effective wood preservative restricted even more in the future. The major concern for the timber treatment industry in Australia is the absence of a national quality monitoring scheme. Poor performance by treated timber in the market place that results from substandard product can only damage not only the treatment industry but the timber industry as a whole.
J Norton


Assessment of the Envelope Effect of Three Hot Oil Treatments: Resistance to Decay by Coniophora puteana and Postia placenta
2006 - IRG/WP 06-40344
Timber of Corsican pine (Pinus nigra var. maritima) and Norway spruce (Picea abies) was treated in hot linseed oil, rapeseed oil and a proprietary resin derived from linseed oil. The samples were immersed in oil or resin under reduced pressure at temperatures of 180°C and 200°C. Very high uptakes of the oils or resin were recorded for pine, while spruce showed lower weight percent gains, below 20%. Treated blocks were exposed to two brown rot fungi, Coniophora puteana (BAM 15) and Postia placenta (FPRL 280). The effect of using a therm-oxidatively cured resin or a drying oil (linseed) was compared with the use of the non-drying rapeseed oil. The resin treated blocks had a lower weight loss at the end of the experiment than blocks from the two oil treatments. It is believed that the polymerization of the resin immediately after treatment assists in reducing the accessibility of the timber to fungal decay. To assess the extent to which this is an envelope treatment, a simple variation on the BS EN113 test method was used to expose untreated surfaces. Sticks of timber which had been treated with the linseed oil or the resin were crosscut to expose un-cured faces on the end grain, and exposed to fungi in the same manner as the standard EN113 test. The effect of cutting open the envelope treatment was an increase in weight loss when compared to the equivalent fully sealed blocks.
M J Spear, C A S Hill, S F Curling, D Jones, M D C Hale


Proposed method for out-of-ground contact trials of exterior joinery protection systems
1981 - IRG/WP 2157
Methods for testing the efficacy of preservative treatments for exterior joinery are described using the format of a European Standard. Commercially used treatments applied to jointed test units (L-joints) which are then protected by conventional finishes are exposed to normal outdoor hazards out of ground contact. Assessment is made a) by determining eventual failure through decay and b) by destructive examination of replicate treated and untreated units, after increasing time intervals, rating comparative performance in terms of wood permeability increase and the progress of microbial colonisation.
J K Carey, D F Purslow, J G Savory


Comparative response of Reticulitermes flavipes and Coptotermes formosanus to borate soil treatments
1991 - IRG/WP 1486
Eastern (Reticulitermes flavipes [Kollarl]) and Formosan (Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki) subterranean termite workers (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) were exposed to borate-treated sand in an indirect exposure tunneling assay in the laboratory. In the ten day assay period, both termite species readily penetrated sand containing 5000, 10000, or 15000 ppm (wt. of compound / wt. of sand) disodium octaborate tetrahydrate (Tim-BorÒ) or zinc borate (Firebrake ZB-FineÒ). With Reticulitermes flavipes, significant mortality (85-93%) resulted from workers tunneling through sand treated with 5000 ppm disodium octaborate tetrahydrate (higher concentrations were also effective), or 15000 ppm zinc borate. Responses of Coptotermes formosanus workers were lesser and more variable, with only concentrations of 10000 and 15000 ppm zinc borate resulting in mortality 70-89%) significantly different from that in the control groups. These results suggest that differences between these two species in tunneling behavior may reduce exposure of Coptotermes formosanus to the borate-treated sand.
J K Grace


Granitgard used as a partial and perimeter barrier in the protection of buildings against subterranean termites
1995 - IRG/WP 95-10114
The graded granite subterranean termite physical barrier, commercially marketed as Granitgard, has a Certificate of National Accreditation issued by the Australian Building Codes Board, and is included in Australian Standards. After several years in developing the specifications and installation techniques for Granitgard, it may be used to protect almost all footing designs. Granitgard can be simply placed around slab penetrations and buildings perimeters to provide a durable, long-life subterranean termite barrier. This paper discusses the development of partial and perimeter applications of Granitgard around buildings, and the advantages of using a termite barrier that removes the need for costly and dangerous chemical retreatments.
D M Ewart, J R J French


IRG/COIPM INTERNATIONAL MARINE TEST - to determine the effect of timber substrate on the effectiveness of water-borne salt preservatives in sea-water. Progress Report 2: Report of treatment and installation in Australia
1978 - IRG/WP 440
The purpose of this test and the procedures to be followed have been fully set out in documents distributed by the International Research Group on Wood Preservation and numbered IRG/WP/414 and IRG/WP/420. The prescriptions set out in these two documents have been closely followed.
J Beesley


Developments in the protection of wood and wood-based products
1980 - IRG/WP 340
Technology is playing an increasingly important role in the field of wood protection. This current review highlights how modern techniques have provided greater insight into the biological and physical processes affecting the durability of wood and wood-based products. Emphasis is also given to developments in preservative testing methodology and to the encouraging changes towards both the correct use of timber and the improvement of Standards and Codes of Practice. A final section, on recent technical developments in wood preservation, considers subjects ranging from an evaluation of new specific biocides to methods of increasing the permeability of refractory timber species.
J M Baker


Soft rot penetration - Effect of groundline maintenance treatment on poles in sevice
1983 - IRG/WP 3263
R S Johnstone


Progress towards controlling soft rot of treated hardwood poles in Australia
1977 - IRG/WP 289
H Greaves


Protocol for evaluation and approving new wood preservative
1985 - IRG/WP 2159
M E Hedley, J A Butcher


Field tests out of ground contact in France: Definition of the test procedure and preliminary results after 18 months
1981 - IRG/WP 2161
M Fougerousse


Extending the useful life of creosoted electricity distribution poles in service
1993 - IRG/WP 93-50001-16
Creosoted transmission poles have provided good service over many decades in a whole range of environments. The use of save biocides for secondary treatments has the potential to extend the life of such poles. These techniques, together with a full understanding of the modes of failure, make it possible to establish new strategies to further improve the environmental benefits of treated wooden poles.
D J Dickinson, B Calver


The dry rot fungus Serpula lacrymans. Examples of attack and remedial treatment
1988 - IRG/WP 1347
The film deals with several aspects of dry rot attack and eradication in buildings. The detailed biology and morphological charasteristics of the fungus are portrayed. The various forms of mycelial growth, the role of the strands in the nourishment and spread of the fungus, as well as the many types of fruitbody formation are outlined. Environmental and nutritional requirements of the fungus as well as the potential infection danger posed by the basidiospores are discussed. The second part of the film, outlining the main reasons for dry-rot attack and spread in building together with the significant damage caused, shows the full extent of the problem to expert and lay-person alike. The necessity of correct survey and inspection of decayed areas to determine the full range of attack is stressed. Examples of various remedial treatments and the present technological state of eradication techniques, e.g. pressure injection, in Germany are discussed.
G Buchwald, B M Hegarty, W Metzner, R Pospischil, H Siegmund, P Grabow


Field trials of groundline remedial treatments on soft rot attacked CCA treated Eucalyptus poles
1983 - IRG/WP 3222
A total of 17 CCA treated Eucalyptus poles, which were found to contain 2-5 mm of soft rot in October, 1980, were reinspected in October, 1982. In 1980, 11 of the poles were given a supplemental groundline bandage treatment of either Osmoplastic or Patox, while 6 of the poles were designated as untreated controls. Two years after remedial treatment, samples were removed from the poles for microscopic observations and for chemical retention analysis. It was found that the remedial bandage treatments were effective in preventing any further advance of soft rot. Based on the positive results of this study, a treatment efficacy of five years or longer is predicted.
W S McNamara, R J Ziobro, J F Triana


Spruce lumber treatments with ammoniacal solutions of inorganic preservatives
1977 - IRG/WP 391
As a part of our work in the Wood Preservation group at the Eastern Forest Products Laboratory in Ottawa to facilitate exploitation of spruce, which is a large timber resource in Canada, we have been studying the treatability of spruce roundwood. A report on this subject was presented to this group last year. More recently, another commodity - spruce timber - has been rapidly gaining the interest of wood treaters, mainly because of its potential use in permanent wooden foundations. We identified this trend and extended our research work to the treatability of spruce lumber.
R Rak


Effects of various preservative treatments on the mechanical and physical properties of plywood
1993 - IRG/WP 93-40007
The technical properties of plywood are related to both the intrinsic characteristics of its composing wood species and the quality and performance of the glue bond which acts as an interface between veneer sheets. Consequently mechanical and physical testing and glue bond strength analysis offer an appropriate means for studying the effect of preservative treatments on the overall quality of plywood. A range of boards was treated with waterborne and oilborne preservatives. Changes in modulus of elasticity, modulus of rupture and tensile strength were noted as well as variations in physical properties. Analysis of the glue bond strength was done by shear strength testing and determination of the amount of wood failure after different ageing procedures.
J Van Acker, M Stevens


An investigation of the effects of pre-steaming on the treatment of sawn spruce timber with Celcure A, a copper-chrome-arsenic preservative
1981 - IRG/WP 3150
Difficulties in the treatment of spruce using standard vacuum/pressure techniques with both water-borne and organic solvent preservatives are well known. We have evaluated the influence of steaming on treatability with a waterborne CCA preservative.
C R Coggins


Light organic solvent preservative treatment schedules for New Zealand-grown radiata pine
1986 - IRG/WP 3379
The influence of pressure differential and treatment time on preservative uptake and distribution in radiata pine heartwood and sapwood is investigated. Treatment schedules are defined which minimise solvent usage but ensure complete sapwood penetration and optimise heartwood penetration.
P Vinden


Boron treatments for the preservation of wood - A review of efficacy data for fungi and termites
1994 - IRG/WP 94-30037
Boron treatments have been used for many decades for protection of timber from biological attack and also as a fire retardant treatment. In recent years there has been an increased interest in boron treatments as an option for protection of structural timbers&apos; e.g. timber framing used in termite risk areas. This paper reviews efficacy data for both fungi and termites relevant to this end-use.
J A Drysdale


Borate thermal treatments
1992 - IRG/WP 92-3715
Green, partially seasoned (air-dried, steam conditioned), or kiln-dried southern pine timbers were treated thermally using 15% disodiumoctaborate tetrahydrate solution. After treatment, sections were stored under non-drying conditions to allow for diffusion. Results showed that effective treatment meeting the AWPA minimum retention (0.17 B203 pcf [2.72 kg/m³] in the outer inch) and penetration (2.5-in [64-mm] or 85% of the sapwood) could be obtained only with certain combinations of seasoning, treatment, and diffusion storage. The best results in terms of both retention and penetration were obtained with material steamed and stored prior to treatment using a 10-min hot bath time. Kiln-dried timbers could not be treated effectively. The results suggest that non-conforming treatment of green or partially seasoned timbers will require higher solution concentrations, higher hot bath temperatures, and/or longer diffusion periods to meet required standards. Results also indicated that treatment of smaller stock in dimension sizes (up to 2-in [50-mm]) should be feasible.
H M Barnes, R W Landers, L H Williams


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