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Modification of three hardwoods with an N-methylol melamine compound and a metal-complex dye

This study evaluated the combined modification and staining of ash, beech and maple wood with a low molecular weight N-methylol melamine compound (NMM) and a metal-complex dye. Wood samples were treated with aqueous solutions of 10, 20 and 30 wt% NMM and 5 wt% of the dye. The treatment caused the fixation of the water-soluble dye by the NMM resin. Vacuum pressure impregnation of unsealed wood blocks did not result in different solution uptake and weight percent gain after curing among the three species, but sealing of the surfaces of the wood blocks to allow penetration only into one direction revealed easiest penetrability of beech followed by maple and ash. UV micro-spectrophotometry and light microscopy indicated that NMM was partly deposited in the cell wall and partly in the lumens. Penetration of the metal-complex dye was shown by means of X-ray micro-analysis (SEM–EDX). The study shows that a combined resin modification and staining of the three wood species tested is possible and that NMM causes fixation of the water-soluble dye.

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