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  • Pile of Wood

    Made a trip to the Hester’s timber mill got a couple pieces of green aspen. Seven pieces 12” to 14” diameter 16” long. End grain sealed pith bored or split to dry.

    37DC0E1F-CA73-4E57-877F-F5982D85E8A6.jpeg
    Ed
    Living in a pile of chips.
    https://m.facebook.com/pg/CentralNeb...ernal&mt_nav=0

  • #2
    You're not going to be able to get your wives car in the garage if you keep this up. So by boring the pith they dry out better, quicker?

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Mike WNC View Post
      You're not going to be able to get your wives car in the garage if you keep this up. So by boring the pith they dry out better, quicker?
      We managed to end up in a house with a three car garage or more accurately two car garage and Ed’s Play Room. Which I will be cleaning up tomorrow.

      First time I tried carving green wood I read a ton of ideas online. I’ve had pretty good luck using this process. The idea is since wood shrinks as it dries. Boring the pith allows the wood to dry/shrink from both the inside and outside and hopefully reducing the chances of cracks or checks from forming. My process starts using a drawknife to remove the bark. The I apply Anchorseal End Grain Sealer to the ends and an inch or so down the sides. Finally boring the pith or splitting away the pith. (Really need to but a chainsaw) I also took a cutting so I can make 1” long pith plugs. I hope to carve life-sized bust from the bored pieces and will need to plug the top so Mick Jagger doesn’t have a hole in his head. Hopefully that using pith from the same tree will result in the plug not being to obvious.

      Also thought I’d mention that I won’t be waiting for these to “finish” drying before carving. Green wood carves real nice. When I carve green wood I put the carving in a brown paper bag then in a cardboard box with a bowl of distilled water when not carving. Slows the drying again to avoid cracking. If I’ve exposed a lot of end grain when carving I’ll reapply end grain sealer as well.
      Last edited by Nebraska; 11-17-2019, 10:08 AM.
      Ed
      Living in a pile of chips.
      https://m.facebook.com/pg/CentralNeb...ernal&mt_nav=0

      Comment


      • #4
        Aspen carves quite nicely even when dry. This figure was whittled from a dry aspen limb picked up along a trail. The main drawback is it becomes a little brittle. My grandkids played with this and broke it off at the ankles.

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        • #5
          That is one good-looking stock pile of carving wood.
          Aspen should hold great detail when carved dry.
          Telephone installer's 18" bit to drill the pith?

          I got some 5" x 24" pieces of snow-white willow, fresh cut and sopping wet.
          With a Skil-Saw, I cut a 2" wedge out of what I guessed would be the "ugly" side.
          Like cutting out the backs of totem poles. Just carpenter's glue on the ends.
          They all dried without so much as hairline cracks.
          Moldy. Needed almost daily wiping.
          Brian T

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          • #6
            First I'm jealous, Ed. Can't find any Aspen around here...just alder and pine. You seem to have the drying issues solved and appreciate you sharing those.
            Bill
            Living among knives and fire.

            http://www.westernwoodartist.com

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by woodburner807 View Post
              First I'm jealous, Ed. Can't find any Aspen around here...just alder and pine. You seem to have the drying issues solved and appreciate you sharing those.
              I drove 900 miles round trip to get this wood. That’s a little misleading we have kid and grandkids in the area so we went for a visit and getting the wood was a little afternoon outing for us.

              I don’t know exactly where you are but there are aspens in the Cascades and up into Canada.
              Ed
              Living in a pile of chips.
              https://m.facebook.com/pg/CentralNeb...ernal&mt_nav=0

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Brian T View Post
                That is one good-looking stock pile of carving wood.
                Aspen should hold great detail when carved dry.
                Telephone installer's 18" bit to drill the pith?

                I got some 5" x 24" pieces of snow-white willow, fresh cut and sopping wet.
                With a Skil-Saw, I cut a 2" wedge out of what I guessed would be the "ugly" side.
                Like cutting out the backs of totem poles. Just carpenter's glue on the ends.
                They all dried without so much as hairline cracks.
                Moldy. Needed almost daily wiping.
                1” Auger bit had to drill from both ends an 18” bit would have been handy.
                Ed
                Living in a pile of chips.
                https://m.facebook.com/pg/CentralNeb...ernal&mt_nav=0

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by pallin View Post
                  Aspen carves quite nicely even when dry. This figure was whittled from a dry aspen limb picked up along a trail. The main drawback is it becomes a little brittle. My grandkids played with this and broke it off at the ankles.
                  Thanks for the heads up. Hopefully I can avoid that, with the finish process.

                  Finishing Aspen:
                  Pure Light Tung Oil cut with mineral spirits
                  Dry overnight
                  Pure Light Tung Oil
                  Dry overnight
                  440 grit sanding
                  Dry one week (no cheating, oil will come up through poly later if you do)
                  Coats of oil based Gloss Poly (24 hr dry time) and 220 sanding until it looks wet when dried. (4 to 6 coats typically) I figure until it still looks wet it’s still soaking into the wood.
                  light sanding then two sprayed coats oil based Satin Poly.
                  Last edited by Nebraska; 11-17-2019, 01:34 PM.
                  Ed
                  Living in a pile of chips.
                  https://m.facebook.com/pg/CentralNeb...ernal&mt_nav=0

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Nebraska View Post

                    I drove 900 miles round trip to get this wood. That’s a little misleading we have kid and grandkids in the area so we went for a visit and getting the wood was a little afternoon outing for us.

                    I don’t know exactly where you are but there are aspens in the Cascades and up into Canada.
                    We are located on the Oregon Coast and haven't found any around here yet, however, we do visit our daughter in Washington and might try up there.
                    Bill
                    Living among knives and fire.

                    http://www.westernwoodartist.com

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by woodburner807 View Post

                      We are located on the Oregon Coast and haven't found any around here yet, however, we do visit our daughter in Washington and might try up there.
                      Ever try Madrone ? It grows wild on the PAC coast. It looks like walnut inside a bit lighter. Turns nicely from the wood stack. Wonder if I have any in the shop for the lathe. Hum. I have oak galore but it is tough.

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                      • #12
                        We are in a pocket of Myrtle wood but haven't seen any madrone nearby. My wife has spotted some and I'll look at harvesting a few pieces and check the carving properties out.

                        Nice suggestion, Lionslair, and thanks.
                        Bill
                        Living among knives and fire.

                        http://www.westernwoodartist.com

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Myrtle and Madrone are closely related so I hear. Madrone is a flowering tree with skin , no bark. Large leaves and from what I heard has been around since Redwoods were shoots. Very old tree. It flows in all directions putting on high stress into logs. Turning some larger chunks typically popped in release of pressure. I had one growing down hill about 6' high and 16" in diameter. It bent upwards and then left in a tight angle. I suppose hunting for light in that cathedral of Coastal Redwoods. Beautiful sparkle in in wood.

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                          • #14
                            As a teenager (in the late 1940's) I visited myrtlewood factories on the Oregon coast. They had an elaborate process for drying slabs, bowl blanks, roughed-out bowls, etc. Months of temp/humidity controlled storage.
                            Madrone has often been mis-identified as Manzanita even by early explorers. For example, Manzanita Bay on Bainbridge Island, WA was named by a member of Vancouver's crew. My stepson there is now drying Madrone slabs harvested on his own property. More into to come. . .
                            Last edited by pallin; 11-18-2019, 03:14 PM.

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