Thought I'd say hi and say I've found this thread very interesting indeed. Having spent an absolute fortune since starting fishkeeping last year, it's great to see the success you've had on a budget.
So I don't get over excited and try doing this with my tank, could you please fill me in on your water ph/kh/gh to see if I'm similar.
Hopefully someone more knowledgeable will correct me if this is wrong but boiling helps kill off any parasites / nasties that are in the wood, as much as helping it sink. I would definitely still boil stuff, whether it sinks or not.
Yeah, I boiled it for the nasties, and the internet suggested soaking it in a bucket for weeks to waterlog it until it sinks. I haven't checked my levels in FOREVER, and I didn't have a baseline to start off with so it would be hard to see how the wood affected the water parameters.