Powder Post Beetles In A Finished Walnut Chair

  • Advertise with us

« back to Wood & Lumber forum

Forum topic by gfadvm posted 03-20-2012 08:32 PM 3359 views 0 times favorited 34 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 3203 days

03-20-2012 08:32 PM

Topic tags/keywords: powder post beetles

I searched all the previous threads on this topic and didn’t get a definative answer so I’m posting this. I recently built a walnut folding chair, finished with several sprayed coats of Spar Urethane, and sold it for a good bit of $. The owners report tiny holes with bits of sawdust have appeared. I want to do the right thing but they aren’t looking for a refund if it can be fixed (bugs killed) or I’ll make them another but I still need to know what to do to kill these critters if possible. Calls to several exterminators have not produced any answers as they don’t know what to do either. HELP! Edit: This was supposed to be kiln dried lumber so I don’t know where these came from and I haven’t seen any other damage in my shop?

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

34 replies so far

View rance's profile


4271 posts in 3673 days

#1 posted 03-20-2012 08:37 PM

Put it in a microwave for 5min on defrost.


Fumigate it for a few days and then test it/give it back.

-- Backer boards, stop blocks, build oversized, and never buy a hand plane--

View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 3821 days

#2 posted 03-20-2012 08:38 PM

Rance…you must have one huge miscowave if you can fit a chair in it.

Powder post beatles. They are a pain. I threw away a cabinet once that had them but I understand that there are options to get rid of them. i am not sure what they are but i have seen others post about their solutions.
Good Luck!

View Tim Dahn's profile

Tim Dahn

1590 posts in 4078 days

#3 posted 03-20-2012 08:46 PM

I bet if you put the chair in a big black trash bag and left it out in that Oklahoma sun it would be almost like an oven or kiln inside.

-- Good judgement comes from experience and experience comes from poor judgement.

View patron's profile


13654 posts in 3854 days

#4 posted 03-20-2012 08:50 PM

i don’t know if it might work andy
but as it folds up

if you can put it in a top opening freezer
and let them freeze for a while
that may do it

if not wrapped in some plastic sheeting
with some exterminator powder
or fumes might work
(like tenting a house)

good luck

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View reggiek's profile


2240 posts in 3783 days

#5 posted 03-20-2012 09:00 PM

Here is some info I’ve used before. They have some excellent information on Powderpost Beetles

-- Woodworking.....My small slice of heaven!

View SnowyRiver's profile


51458 posts in 3993 days

#6 posted 03-20-2012 09:28 PM

I would just put the chair in a large plastic bag or sheet of plastic, shoot some insecticide in it and close it up for 48 hours.

-- Wayne - Plymouth MN

View SuburbanDon's profile


487 posts in 3507 days

#7 posted 03-20-2012 10:11 PM

I like the black bag in the sun idea.

-- --- Measure twice, mis-cut, start over, repeat ---

View sIKE's profile


1271 posts in 4267 days

#8 posted 03-20-2012 10:20 PM

You might try fuming with some amonia

-- //FC - Round Rock, TX - "Experience is what you get just after you need it"

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 4161 days

#9 posted 03-20-2012 10:21 PM

Find a place that paints cars, put in in the oven they use to
cure the paint. Any antique dealer who handles furniture
should be able to make recommendations to your client.

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 3203 days

#10 posted 03-20-2012 10:28 PM

Thanks for all the quick replys. Can I fumigate it effectively by bagging it and setting off one of those Raid bombs in the bag; then leave it bagged for a period of time? This is my problem NOT the new owner’s so I need to deal with it. Thanks again my friends.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View SnowyRiver's profile


51458 posts in 3993 days

#11 posted 03-20-2012 10:34 PM

I would just go to your local garden center and get some insecticide for powderpost beatles and use that in the bag.

-- Wayne - Plymouth MN

View SCOTSMAN's profile


5849 posts in 4098 days

#12 posted 03-20-2012 10:35 PM

I feel your pain brother , it must be very frustrating to have executed a piece of work and have this happen. I beg you not to worry yourself sick over it keep in touch with the people and some of these ideas will work. I would contact a local university or wood college and ask their opinion before starting on any of the frezing heating ideas they may make the damage worse or joints come loose etc take it easy and keep cool,after all it’s not exactly your fault.Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

View bruc101's profile


1366 posts in 4055 days

#13 posted 03-21-2012 12:28 AM

About 8 years ago I was helping the finishing department for a small aerospace plant on a project for a couple of weeks. Three of us were in the finishing department one Saturday morning all decked out in our clean suits doing some serious work for one of their finishers who just happened to be a woodworker.

We had their drying oven set at 200 degrees for one hour. Inside the oven on the drying racks were 2 dozen 2×8’s x 8 feet long full of the famous wood eating bug…at the end of the hour those wood eating bugs were no longer living…course we had some cleaning to do to purge the oven of dust.

So, heat does kill them.

-- Bruce Free Plans

View Joseph Jossem's profile

Joseph Jossem

492 posts in 2781 days

#14 posted 03-21-2012 01:53 AM

Those nasty powder monkeys I have had to deal with them constantly in hawaii last 15 years cut a nice tree they like they appear withn hours.

IF you have acess freeze it hahaha but it works.from there I have used thinner and all sorts of chemicals the best I have found is the bayer poison from homedepot make sure it gets in good.

View LittlePaw's profile


1571 posts in 3591 days

#15 posted 03-21-2012 03:53 AM

Here’s my five cent’s worth, Andy. 1) KNOW SOMEONE WITH A WALK-IN FREEZER? Leave the chair in it for a few days. 2) disassemble the chair; put all parts in a big plastic bag and set off a bug balm in it and leave it alone for a day or 2 or 3 . . . until you hear nothing with your stethoscope. Hope for the best!

-- LittlePAW - The sweetest sound in my shop, next to Mozart, is what a hand plane makes slicing a ribbon.

showing 1 through 15 of 34 replies

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics