Stumper Detail

Date: Monday, January 1, 2001 
Question/Topic: Powder Post Beetle 
Answer/Pointer: Q. I have an antique desk. About five years ago, I noticed what looked like sawdust on the bare floor where the back part of the desk stands. How can I tell if there are microscopic insects present, and if so, how can I treat such a problem? A. N doubt your desk is infested with what's known as the power-post beetle, which burrows in the wood, leaving a fine dropping of sawdust. Such a problem can be recognized by small holes left by the insects. Such furniture should be promptly removed from other furniture or wood items so that they won't be infested as well. To safely treat the furniture and destroy the infestation, John Conrad, who does restoration work at the Henry Ford Museum in Detroit, says to first oil the piece inside and out with Conrad's Wood Youth oil. Then, after at least 24 hours, wipe the furniture off with a dampened cloth containing alcohol and a little of Conrad's oil. Insects, termites, and worms and their eggs will not survive this treatment. The oil softens the eggs so they cannot hatch and the wood becomes inedible. Conrad' Wood Youth Food Oil is available in two 16-ounce bottles for $30 postpaid shipped UPS from John Conrad, 21494 Avon Lane, Southfield, MI 48075. (From Anita Gold's column, Tallahassee Democrat, 3/9/97) 
Librarian: LCLCPL 

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