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Wood Conservation — Previous Questions

    1. Label and identify features exhibited in transverse sections of (1) a deciduous and (2) a coniferous wood from the pith to the phloem. Note the differences and similarities between the two.
    2. Your significant other, in an attempt to stump you (yo!, pun intended), hands you a log, and axe, a razor, and a 10x hand held magnifying lens. S/he asks you to cut the log into three sectional planes and to name the sections. S/he then quizzes you on all the visible elements of the wood that are evident. Show him/her what you know by drawing and labeling the three sectional planes and each element visible by eye and/or at 10x magnification.
    3. What are the components of wood. How to they contribute to or inhibit biological attack.
    4. List and describe at least four (4) conditions which promote biological attack of wood. How can you control each condition to minimize the decay of wood.
    5. Outline the procedure for employing epoxy systems for filling, consolidation, and structural work. Address materials selection, execution of work, safety precautions, etc.
    6. What saws were employed in milling lumber. When. Illustrate and describe what evidence of each particular saw blade you would expect to find on lumber.
    7. According to Alex O’Donnell and Jeff Moore, what are the ten major agents causing deterioration of museum collections. (Leave aside matters of funding and politics.) How can they be addressed from a conservator’s perspective? Propose at least one potential solution for each problem.
    8. The owner of an 1871 Italianate structure discovers that the sill, and several other timbers, exhibit ‘rot’. As an architectural conservator, explain step by step how the distraught owner should approach this problem.
    9. You have been hired by the owner of a 1817 Federal frame structure, which is occupied by a family with young children and a pet goldfish. Upon preliminary inspection, there is evidence of considerable ‘insect infestation’ in architectural and structural elements. How should the owners approach this problem?
    10. List and briefly describe the steps and options a conservator has when proceeding with the duplication of historic wood moldings. Specifically mention tools (or machines), techniques, products, and services (craftspeople, etc.) you might require.
    11. What are the properties of brown rot, white rot, and dry rot; which woods do they prefer; what do they consume; and what is the evidence of each.
    12. Discuss the evolution of wood ‘manufacturing’ (i.e.: Milling, planing, molding) in America, citing specific advances in technology and how they affected period aarchitecture (structural and architectural elements).
    13. What is the relationship between: temperature, relative humidity, equilibrium moisture content, and fiber saturation point.
    14. Based on our site visit to Coggeshall Farm Museum, explain the knowledge gained through the rake-making experience. Be as specific as possible.
    15. Discuss the differing philosophies and methods of architectural photographers as contrasted with others who photograph architecture. Be specific.
    16. Describe the construction and tools (be specific, detailing use of each tool) used to make a window sash.
    17. Illustrate (using two examples of machinery) the development of wood-milling machinery in the 19th century and describe how they affected the production of architectural woodwork (citing two architectural examples).
    18. List and describe (illustrate) the principal stresses causes in structural members by external sources.
    19. List and describe the load demands placed on a structure.
    20. Explain and illustrate the concept of bending behavior with respect to a wood beam.
    21. Describe the relationship between moisture content and fiber saturation point of a wood.