4 Tips for Staying Safe While Wood-burning

  • 3 min read

Wood burning, a unique decorating technique, provides an opportunity for people to create intricate, detailed designs and works of art.

Also known as pyrography, this practice has existed since ancient times and remains popular still today.

And, while woodburning allows artists to express themselves in a fun and exciting way, it does come with risks not seen in other forms of art. 

Pyrography artists should make sure to do their research and familiarize themselves with the risks associated with the practice before beginning their first piece.

In this article, we’re going to be discussing the four main safety risks associated with woodburning, including the risks to your lungs, skin, and home, and what you can do to keep yourself safe.

WoodBurning Basics for Staying Safe

  • Protect Yourself from Smoke Inhalation

One of the most relevant woodburning basics is to always remain mindful of your lungs, and the quality of air that you’re breathing, when working on a project.

In pyrography, there are bound to be some questionable materials in the air, including sawdust and toxic chemicals, depending on the material you’re burning.

Always work in a well-ventilated area to provide yourself with the best protection from the get-go. 

Include several fans in the room where you’re working, and keep the air constantly circulating.

You should sand your wood outside, if possible, but wear a mask if you can’t.

Breathing in a bunch of sawdust before even starting your project is the last thing you want to do.

  • Guard Your Skin Against Burns

The best step you can take to keep yourself safe is to start by reading all the safety instructions included with your woodburning tool, and then follow them accordingly.

Burns are the most common injury associated with pyrography, so it’s important for you to take measures to protect yourself. 

Whether using a hot-tip pyrography pen, or the heat gun necessary for use with a Scorch Marker, you should always be mindful of potential burns, especially with kids and teenagers.

  • Choose the Right Wood

Researching wood types and cuts is a critical step in ensuring that your woodburning project comes out exactly as you have it in your mind.

Doing so can significantly improve the way that your creation looks and make designing it that much easier.

However, that’s not the real reason your investigation is so important. 

During the process of woodburning, sap, smoke, and chemicals in the piece can all cause very serious health reactions in people who didn’t take time to properly prepare.

Double-check to see that your wood is untreated and sanded down before use.

Also, avoid burning on any wood that has been painted.

Wood burning markers, like the Scorch Marker, can also be used on alternative media like cardboard and paper.

  • Watch for Hanging Jewelry and Hair

The tools necessary for a pyrography project are incredibly hot and there is always a fire risk that comes along with handling hot tools.

Pull long hair back and remove any hanging jewelry, just to further reduce the risk of burns or starting a fire.

It’s also important to make sure that all hot tips and parts are fully cooled before packing them away or setting them down. 

When working with a heat gun, as is necessary for the Scorch Marker, work in a place far from flammable materials, and keep your hands away from the end of the gun to prevent burns.

Stay Safer While Woodburning with the Scorch Marker

The Scorch Marker, the world’s first woodburning marker, was designed with families and beginners in mind.

The Scorch Marker allows you to create beautiful pieces of art with the same level of detail as traditional wood-burning.

In fact, because you don’t add heat until later, the Scorch Marker allows you to create designs with ease, using vinyl stencils. Learn more about using Cricut vinyls with the Scorch Marker on our blog.

3 Responses

Trudy Merchant

Trudy Merchant

February 22, 2024

I have a question.
Can I use scorch markers on bamboo cutting boards?



February 22, 2024

I’ve bought a cutting board, raw wood. I think it is bamboo. The pen is not working. Suggestions. I have a 1500 watt heat gun.. Thanks

Pat Walczak-Frazer

Pat Walczak-Frazer

January 19, 2023

Can I use Scorch raker on plywood that’s been sanded?

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