We have some birch from a tree that died that was kind of special. I don't know what was wrong with the tree. I'd like to use the wood to make some crafts. Do I need to treat it somehow? I can't find any noticible bugs. I think it's pretty dry. It's been hanging around outside for over a year.
I don't do anything to my wood before working with it, though I tend to use green wood rather than dry stuff.
Once I'm done I finish with a coat of oil, usually walnut as it gives a nice finish and is safe on things to be used with food (most of my carving to date has been spoons).
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