Maple Mastery: When it comes to satisfying children who chew, maple is potentially the safest wood for children's toys.
Wooden teethingtoys can save lives when it comes to defeating the pacifier and pacifying the pacifier. Almost any common American hardwood or white pine is safe, some tropical woods can cause problems with the toxins they contain. These toxins can sometimes cause problems for carpenters when they get dust from working with wood on the skin or lungs.
I have used hickory only with mineral oil. Bob Flexner wrote probably the best book on finishes, he says that any finish is safe after 30 days. I would suggest any type of hardwood, such as oak or maple. In my opinion, softer woods such as spruce pine or spruce are more likely to chip and that would not be good for your little ones.
Make sure you sand everything you do thoroughly to make it smooth to the touch. Make sure all the dust has been wiped off. You can use lemon oil to coat the finished product and give it a clean shine. It would avoid stains and lack of color on children's toys, as they can put the object in their mouths and there are many chemicals in wood finishing products.
As with any toy, when considering a wooden one, it should be age-appropriate and safe for the child. There are no smaller parts for younger children, no toxic paints or glues, and the level of complexity must also be appropriate. This includes things like pressure treated wood and pallet wood (some pallet woods are fumigated or may have been exposed to toxic materials). Making wooden toys out of trees that don't produce is a great way to make use of materials that would otherwise be thrown away.
ECOS paints are non-toxic, VOC free and certified safe for use on toys and around those who are particularly sensitive to chemical fumes and paint odors. Engineered wood such as MDF or plywood is versatile enough to make children's toys, but keep in mind that they can be loaded with chemicals used in the manufacturing process. In conclusion, while MDF toys tend to be much cheaper than solid wood toys, the risks involved, especially as they wear out, may not be worth it. Woodworkers prefer this wood as it is sturdy and less prone to splintering, an important property of wood for making toys for children.
You seem to have gotten excellent responses in woods and finishes, although a natural finish of salad oil or beeswax, although higher maintenance, is inherently edible. Also, in an effort to be greener, choosing MDF wooden toys can be counterproductive, as damaged toys are more likely to be sent to the landfill instead of the next child, and all of this seems to defeat the purpose of going green. Fruit woods and those that come from trees that produce nuts such as walnut fall into the category of food-safe woods. Although there are about 600 species of oak, the common factors for this wood are strength, heaviness and durability.