THERMALLY TREATED ASH
First developed in the 1930’s, the thermal modification of timber is now a computer controlled kiln based process that preserves wood in its most natural and flawless state, using just heat and water - no nasty chemicals at all.
The Ash is dry heated to around 130c to remove all the moisture, then steam heated to over 200c and held at that temperature for several hours. Finally, it is water spray cooled to ensure a final moisture content of just 5%. All this careful and precise attention triggers three important changes in the resulting timber :-
Firstly, caramelisation of Lignin in the wood causes colour change throughout each plank, creating the rich browns of more tropical timber to appear.
Secondly, the actual cellular structure of the wood is physically altered to significantly reduce all moisture induced movement.
Finally, the rot resistance of the timber is dramatically improved, because the sugar content burns away - this eliminates the food source for all the mould, fungus or biological decay which would normally cause deterioration.
Thermally treated Ash is lighter in weight than most hardwoods and has low thermal conductivity reducing the surface heat of the furniture on a hot day. Exposure to moisture and sunlight will naturally weather the Ash to a soft platinum-grey colour.