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Many of you have read my tale of late night wood stealing earlier... this has to do with the larger chunk of dry wood I had found... I struggled with the chisels on this four footer... crappy wood... I think its willow or something... very hard to carve. Anyhow, I got a nice moai like guy carved out of it and set it up in the garage to apply some stain. 10 minutes later tons of large black carpenter ants started crawling out of a couple small holes. They were everywhere... and once in a while these huge queen ants with wings started crawling out. Of course they were all dropping quickly due to the stain but I was scrambling to get them off the tiki before they dried in the poly stain. Anyone else have any insect problems when they carve wood? I would figure there isn't much that could burrow into palms though... I've also encountered larve in my basswood logs while debarking them.

This tiki is definately going outside... who know what else is burrowed inside!

That is too funny!!!


Watch out for miniature hibernating bears!

For any Toronto carver lurkers in the forum, I saw a huge stack of tiki sized logs behind the Canada Malting Plant on Queen's Quay on Saturday. Just drive south on Bathurst 'til your hat floats, and park in the Island Airport Lot. Get out of car, don ninja outfit, then turn left on the pier. They're leaning against the south side of the building.

Lake Surfer, I dug out a palm with roots and all, and termites. I think they were just under the bark but I sprayed it with diazinon anyway and I'm keeping a close eye on it. Hoefully I got 'em all but you can't be too careful.

Here is a buggy lil tale for ya. I bought a two foot Tiki in Hana last time I was in Maui. I got the buggah home safe and sound and put him on the shelf he was going to call home. A few hours later I noticed a stream of ants leading to the tiki. They seemed to be very excited about a bump on the tiki legs (ok, you jokers get your mind out of the gutters.) I thought it was just a knot or some imperfection in the wood. It was the same color of the wood and was pretty much indistinguishable. I couldn't figure what the ants were freakin' on. I poked at the bump with a nail and it totally popped and started oozin' out some wierd chocolatey looking crap. To this day I have no idea what that bump was It wasn't a sappy wood and I wasn't about to taste it or smell it. After I cleaned it up with some alcohol the ants bailed and the tiki hads been ant free ever since.
And that is my tiki-ant-mystery bump story.


Well, I'm not a carver but I am a preschool teacher and if there's one thing I know about it's lice infestations. Whenever there is an outbreak we take the couch cushions and whatever else that might be infested (besides the kids) and tape them up in plastic 'till it's totally airtight. We leave the stuff in there for six weeks 'till the lice suffocate.

Don't know if any of this is helpful in your situation but I couldn't help but share my expertise.


This topic has totally got me buggin'


When we brought our tiki home from oceanic arts (a schmaltz creation from a palm tree chunnk we found on the side of the road) it was unsealed palm wood. We set it up outside and went to get some sealer. When we came back we were about to start the French Shellac and then the loud buzzing began.
A bumblebee had taken up residence in the few short hours between setting it in the backyard and going out to seal it.
We had to patch a few very large bumblebee sized holes before continuing. AND had to run away a few times, cause the bee didn't like what we were doing...




You sure the bees weren't carpenter bees?? Those bastards decided to infest our house last summer and drilled these perfectly round little holes all over the trim...luckily they didn't attack the outdoor tikis but if they decide to, once the weather warms up, they are gonna have hell to pay!


Yeah, I've had my battles with some ants, termites, etc. Lake Surfer, funny story, we're very similar, I made my first tikis from drift wood that accumulates at Rincon Beach in Ventura, almost all the wood I brought home was infested with some type of insect. I covered them end to end with plastic trash bags and sprayed Raid in there a couple times a week. By the way, your "operation wood retrieval" story was great. I'm always milling through trashcans, wood piles etc. for anything to be used for projects. I use the excuse that I'm a college art student when someone catches me, but I know I'm gonna still be doing it in 30 years. I also have two carpenter bees living in one of the tikis in my backyard. One is an albino, I'm not sure if thats special or anything but its pretty cuel. They always come huvering around my head when I'm out back carving. Unlike other types of bees, these seem friendlier, like you could chat tikis with them and they would understand, unlike your neighbors who are fed up with the chain saw noise. My girlfriend named one of the bees "Tumble-Weed". -tOny

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