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Fractal Wood Burning - What You Need To Know

Nosheen Batool
Fractal Wood Burning - What You Need To Know

What is Fractal Wood Burning?

Fractal burning is the technique of burning wood with a very high Voltage Electricity current to burn the pattern on the wood. Nowadays everyone is burning wood with all types of high-voltage transformers. Microwave transformers are used to create high voltage current to burn wooden trays like Charcuterie wooden boards and all other stuff just to give it a new and interesting look. Not knowing how dangerous it can be. People have lost their lives trying this hack.

The problem with Fractal burning is that people are repeating this hack only to gain some likes for videos. They are using all sorts of burning devices like a microwave ovens' transformer to create electric current for these patterns in the wood. 

The trend is not only  hazardous for you but can also damage your machinery. Some users are using car jumpers cables to transformers or metal spikes to create some patterns. Now they are using hundreds of voltage electrical current, which can be deadly. 

To make the creative designs and patterns on wood they dip the wood with a solution. So they make the wood damp and run a strong current through it. It looks stylish and unsusal but at what cost? All these lost lives for some designs in wood.

What are the Dangers Involved in Fractal Burning

Fractal Burning can be lethal for the users. The users are taking off microwave transformers and attaching them to cables to produce the high current, but if they come into contact with wood or anything metal during the process, it can be deadly.

There have been confirmed deaths where people lost their lives trying this hack. The tragic death of couple Tanya Rodriguez and 52-year-old James Carolfi, who were electrocuted while trying this hack, is an example of numerous other deaths. Even if you are not using transformers and buy commercial fractal wood burning products, It's can still cause high voltage electrical injury or death.

Is there any Safe way to Do Fractal Burning on Wood?

Fractal burning is hazardous, and the American Association of Woodturners (AAW) has banned all fractal burning demonstrations or equipment sales. They are also not publishing any material on it other than dissuading people from doing it. Even after that, they have reported 33 deaths since 2017.

Even Lichtenberg generators (commercial products) for fractal burning have counterfeit safety warnings that may claim they are safe to use. Still, the truth is that these are unapproved by any certificate body or inspection bodies.

Are there any Safe Ways to create The Fractal Wood Burning Effect?

There are plenty of techniques that you can use to create beautiful impressions on wood. Pyrography is the art to create patterns or designs on wood by burning it. There are plenty of wood-burning tools in the market that you can safely use and create your desired effect on wooden pieces. You can use these tools to create your desired textures, designs, or patterns on wood. Let's see what is Pyrography. 

What is the Art of Pyrography?

pyrography person using wood burning tool on a piece of wood

Pyrography is an art form where you can create patterns in wood, like fractal wood art. Some may refer to it as wood burning, which is not correct. Yes, you can work on wood items, but you can do pyrography on any surface.

It's an embellishment technique that creates designs and textures by burning the wood with a hot instrument. Like the fractal burning process, you are not using high voltage electric sources to produce that may cause high voltage injury or death.

Pyrography is done with a metal pen that can create fractal patterns. The metal pen conducts heat to burn patterns, scripts, or designs on wood. The wood-burning pens and kits are available that are UL-approved.

Even these kits or metal pens are not without any danger. You must be cautious while handling these tools, as they can get very hot. Some types of wood burning may produce soot, which is a combination of smoke and very fine dust particles that are not healthy to inhale, so it is always recommended to buy a safe product and wear a mask while burning wood.

Tips for safety while Any Wood Burning

Here are a few safety tips if you want to create some patterns on wood by burning it.

  • Fractal burning is lethal, and even commercial products should not be used.
  • Pyrography is a safe and fun way to do it, but you should buy metal pens and kits carefully.
  • When starting a DIY project, educate yourself on it thoroughly and learn the dangers and how to avoid them.
  • Wear a mask while burning wood.

Safer Alternative to Fractal Wood Burning:

Try these safer alternatives to wood burning while still achieving similar results - our friend from ScorchMarker (on Amazon) makes a really cool marker that you use on your cutting board, then a heat gun or hair dryer to get the "wood burning" effect. 



Final Words

Fractal wood burning is a very risky trend; we should not promote it by watching more videos. The trend has already taken enough lives, so common sense should prevail. Plenty of tools allow you to create the same or even more aesthetically appealing textures and designs on wood.

So make sure you follow all safety guidelines and don't choose DIY projects that can endanger your life. Pyrography is a safe way to create beautiful designs, and its tools and kits are widely available. 

Choose a safer alternative, such as Scorchmarker - see latest price on Amazon here.


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