Discoloration in steamed beech

Tracing the source of discoloration as a result of beech steaming. 1998.

by Professor Gene Wengert

I am steaming European beech. The steaming results are bad, darkening more than desirable. What is the best procedure for steaming?

Is the darkening due to iron tannate stain (iron reacts with the tannic acid in the wood)? If so, you need to use oxalic acid to remove the stain. Otherwise, shorten the steaming time to produce less color development. Doesn't steaming also result in more cracking?

Professor Gene Wengert is Extension Specialist in Wood Processing at the Department of Forestry, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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