The Dreaded Pallet Wood

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Project by mustanger posted 09-26-2018 07:28 PM 2008 views 3 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I’ve heard so many pros and cons concerning using pallet wood on projects so I decided to find out personally what all the hubbub was about. This pallet had been propped up on the wall of my garage for 5 years or more. It had no treatment markings so I decided to tear it down, plane off the top and bottom layers of crud. The wood I was able to reclaim is beyond description – the yield wasn’t a whole bunch but pallets are free to cheap. I’m sold.

The framing is Walnut with Walnut end grain cornering. Finish is Satin polyurethane.

-- Third Armored Division - Spearhead

12 comments so far

View recycle1943's profile


4475 posts in 2392 days

#1 posted 09-26-2018 08:28 PM

way cool ! free is sooooo nice

-- Dick, Malvern Ohio - my biggest fear is that when I die, my wife sells my toys for what I told her I paid for them

View hookfoot's profile


380 posts in 2719 days

#2 posted 09-26-2018 11:17 PM


View therealSteveN's profile (online now)


5747 posts in 1344 days

#3 posted 09-26-2018 11:49 PM

Nice look there. Of course you do shapes that are already interesting, add that tortured looking wood, and that is a winner.

Pallet wood can be anything, but a lot of times when wood Ops, clear trees to get the big boys out, they move a lot of junk wood. That has the black and white you see sometimes in Persimmon, but the overall feel of it looks to me to be an Oak, or Hickory. Is it open grained?

As usual thanks for posting, already looking forward to your next item of interest.

-- Think safe, be safe

View BobWemm's profile


2867 posts in 2696 days

#4 posted 09-27-2018 12:30 AM

WOW!!!! Great use of some wonderful FREE wood.
I love it.
Thanks for sharing.


-- Bob, Western Australia, The Sun came up this morning, what a great start to the day. Now it's up to me to make it even better. I've cut this piece of wood 4 times and it's still too damn short.

View swirt's profile


5222 posts in 3742 days

#5 posted 09-27-2018 01:07 AM

I like it. A nice design with good looking wood.

Funny concept of pallet wood. I was in Lowes this past weekend and saw they had a box of 4 ft weathered and distressed fake “pallet wood”. All that was missing were the nail holes.

-- Galootish log blog,

View ralbuck's profile


6541 posts in 3036 days

#6 posted 09-27-2018 02:17 AM

WOW!!!! Great use of some wonderful FREE wood.
I love it.
Thanks for sharing.


- BobWemm

GREAT Project and RESCUE too!

I have found black walnut as truck dunnage when I was operating boiler! I used to get oak 4 by 4 about 4 feet long blocks as trash from a garage door plant in W.Fargo ND. too.

-- Wood rescue is good for the environment and me! just rjR

View Ivan's profile


15951 posts in 3638 days

#7 posted 09-27-2018 06:21 AM

Pallet wood can indeed look awesome when you put it together like this.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View adrianpglover's profile


59 posts in 2294 days

#8 posted 09-27-2018 11:23 AM

The problem I have with the “pallet wood” projects my wife finds online is they normally assume a certain size and type of pallet as a base. The types of pallets we get at my work are generally much smaller than the “standard” pallet and a lot of them use plywood and MDF, with almost no real usable wood in it. That being said I took apart some 16+ pallets (that used 2×4s and cardboard), salvaged three 2×4s of about 2’ in length from each, and cut them down to get a single board about 1-1/4” x 3/4” x 14” from each one to replace all the wood in a park bench. In the sanding phase on that one now. Generated a lot of sawdust and firewood though.

What you’ve turned out is much prettier than anything I hope to accomplish with my pallet wood. Nice work and a good look for it. What did you do to the pallet wood to get all of the contrast in the grain?

View pottz's profile


9847 posts in 1754 days

#9 posted 09-27-2018 05:09 PM

i lot of people post “wood art” here and most i dont think much of,especially pallet wood which has been done to death but this one i really love and would gladly hang on the wall in my home.nice work.

-- working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

View mustanger's profile


105 posts in 911 days

#10 posted 09-29-2018 12:17 PM

Thank everyone for the kind comments.

therealSteveN: the wood is too soft to be Oak or Hickory. My guess is Poplar.

adrianpglover: I think sitting out in the weather did most of the natural “artwork”. I took very light passes on the planer to get the most out of the spalting effect.

-- Third Armored Division - Spearhead

View TheFridge's profile


10859 posts in 2256 days

#11 posted 09-29-2018 03:40 PM

Looks a lot like spalted hackberry elm.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View greg48's profile


627 posts in 3527 days

#12 posted 09-29-2018 03:52 PM

My wife used to look at Pinterest for ideas using pallet wood. I brought one home and had her pull the boards off; that was the end of that.

-- Greg, No. Cal. - "Gaudete in Domino Semper"

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