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woods: safe, and not safe


New member
i understand that certain types on conifer trees are unhealthy for corns and cause respiratory problems. i want to build a few climby things for my corns but im a bit afraid to at the moment. all i would be using are small pieces of wood bound together by an all natural (maybe hemp?) rope.

i need to know more about ideal materials before i even imagine what to make.

Woods: Good/Bad
Ropes: Good/Bad

thanks for your time!!
If you want to make a serious project out of it, you might want to check out this tutorial on building a PVC climbing structure. Materials will cost about 15 bucks, and it'll take about an hour to build. I intend to build one as soon as my arboreal vivarium is finished.


As far as woods that aren't safe, I know that pine and cedar have been known to cause RI's and such. Something to do with the chemicals that make the wood scented. I can't offer much help other than that, though.

Hope that helps,
ah thats great!! nice find and thank you. i love to build things. i have built all my tank stands myself (with pine, stained and sealed). cant go wrong with $15, ill be trying this out and i will post with the end results.

thanks again!

if anyone still has info on the woods/ropes please id love to hear it! :)
If you seal pine, it is fine to use, as the phenols (the causes of problems) will not be able to be released. However, a pine branch would probably not be suitable anyways. I'm not really sure if you want to use scrap wood (from like Lowes) or actual branches for a more aesthetic look. The ideal wood (at least I think so) for herps to climb on is sandblasted grapevine. Most hardwood branches are also fine. But PVC also works well--but if want a more natural look, use bamboo in place of the PVC.
For rope, you might want to try taking hemp and braiding it. Hemp is relatively cheap, and you can get a book or tutorial on how to make necklaces and stuff out of it, and then adapt the techniques to suit what you need it for. I'm sure you could make some pretty decent vine-like structures out of it.
my PVC creations are bouncing all over the internet :D
i really need to get some pictures of my other designs....

yeah, best to stay away from any coniferous trees. Stick with aspen, alder, madrona, oak and other hardwods. Treating "wild caught" branches have been gone over heavily here on the forums. Basicly you need to strip the bark off completely and bake or bleach....

I wouldn't imagine any type of rope to be harmful
Most fruit tree wood is safe too, except cherry. Apple is usually the easiest to find and grows in some nice shapes. Couldn't you use sisal rope? Its made from agave fiber and is really strong.