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it a fair price?

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  • it a fair price?

    I live in UK and carve only since 2 months ago, im able to find only 1 inch square block, and i'm looking for 1 1/2(38mm circa). i usualli pay 1.2/1.5 pounds for 1 inch square block (4/6 inch tall). I did a couple of quote in same sawmill and the asked me 3.2 pounds per block 1 1/2 square 6 inch. do you think is this a fair price?


  • #2
    I haven't bought any wood for a long time now but have a look on ebay, Amazon or retailers such as G&S specialist timber in Penrith for an idea of prices.


    • #3
      Like it or not, you have to learn some wood anatomy. Trees present "reaction wood" in their branches. There are extra cell wall layers in the wood of branches. "Tension" wood in angiosperms and "compression" wood in the softwoods.

      If and when the branches are big enough, some companies will saw those for carving.
      Seasoned, reaction wood is a lot tougher than what you are used to.
      Some companies like Heineke understand that to cut and sell second rate carving wood will be the kiss of death for their business.

      Carlo, you need to find the loggers and the basic saw mill. Go bang on their door.
      I can tell a couple of local mills what I need for carving. Less than 30 minutes away.
      They put beams and blocks and logs aside for me.
      I buy lots from time to time and spread it around at cost. We all win.
      Brian T


      • #4
        Hi Carlo,... I'm not familiar with your currency, but I believe that the price you were quoted for the the 1-1/2" wood is roughly $ 5.50 canadian. It may be a bit expensive, but so is everything else these days. If it is good quality wood, and you enjoy your hobby I would suggest you buy it . The cost of basswood from my supplier here in Nova Scotia has doubled in the past 5 to 6 years. In 2016 I was paying $5.50 a bdft, now I pay over $ 11.00 per bdft., but I still carve.
        Carving is still one of the cheapest hobbies that is available to most of us.
        If you're looking for me, you'll find me in a pile of wood chips somewhere...


        • #5

          Just for comparison 1.5” by 1.5”by 12” is $1.25 so less than £1 for twice the wood from my supplier here in the states but I guess the shipping would be a killer. Seams a little high so I’d say look for a new source.

          Ultimately I look at wood rather like worrying about the cost of golf balls. Once you’ve bought the tools and bandaids the wood is the cheap part of the hobby.

          Last edited by Nebraska; 01-07-2022, 08:15 AM.


          • #6
            Carlo.... I agree with Nebraska! While cost is always a factor, if you want to carve there are just some times when you have to bite the bullet!


            • #7
              Master carver Chris Pye is in the UK , he teaches classes and has videos some are free on his is one of his suggestions to a student. Chris Pye | 09 February 2021 14:03

              Thomas - Yes, you cannot get far without wood! I guess you think it grows on trees but, from our point of view as carvers, we have to find sources where the wood has been converted into boards and seasoned (dried).
              I don't know where you live but it wouldn't matter too much; we have subscribers from around the world with the same problem: where do I get suitable wood?
              Do see this as a challenge, rather than a problem. There is wood out there; you just need to find it.
              Here are some ideas:
              1. Online searching - can be very fruitful. They want to sell you their wood!
              2. Fish where the fish swim. In other words, also search for woodcarvers, turners etc; carving and turning suppliers in your area.
              3. Try also woodcarving clubs, magazines - that sort of thing. People who use the wood. Perhaps start a club and pool resources
              You may have to buy more than you want at the moment. And you should if you are interested in pursuing carving into the future. Snap it up where you find it and build up a reserve. You can't get far without it and it's good to have wood to fire off ideas...
              So, a bit of work on your side if there's nothing immediately to hand, but that's the nature of the beast I'm afraid. Sorry there is no easy answer.
              Hope this helps.
              . Explore! Dream! Discover!” aloha Di


              • #8
                You're buying what I call "boutique" wood. Prices like that are at Woodcraft, Rockler and so forth. If you have access to a saw to rip and/or cross cut your wood, you can buy bigger pieces. I paid $5.50 US per board foot for some basswood a few years ago. But it was a slab that I had to cut down myself. That, I bought from a supplier who deals with the trades; thus much higher volume and lower prices.


                • #9
                  Carlo83 Here are a couple of sources of wood:
         scroll down a ways - they have sculpture blocks and limewood

         Carving tools. Kirschen (Two Cherries) is a good brand.

                  Another business to contact is a tree trimming service (tree surgeons, etc.). Figure out what woods you can carve, such as limewood, poplar, etc., and ask them to help you out when they have to cut one of these down. Green wood, if you get some, needs to age. Paint the ends of the wood with wax, house paint, several coats of varnish, etc. to slow down the evaporation and help prevent cracks and splits. Store outside in a weather-protected area, with sticks between layers to allow air flow. The general rule is it takes one year per inch (2.54 cm) of thickness. Search the internet for Drying Wood - British woodturners have quite a bit of literature about this, from solar-powered kilns to use of PEG (polyethylene Glycol)

                  Another potential source for wood is EBay, although caveat emptor!
                  Last edited by Claude; 01-07-2022, 04:59 PM.
                  My FaceBook Page:
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                  • #10

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                    • #11
                      Hi Carlo. If you are on facebook over there you make want to check out "Stichmakers and Suppliers (sas) " There are alot of carvers who make sticks in the from all over the UK. They share about suppliers and product.
                      We live in the land of the free because of the brave! Semper Fi


                      • #12
                        See if there are any UK Facebook wood carver groups and ask for local recommendations. I tried e-Bay early on and the wood was terrible. Craft-store wood is also horrible. I buy in bulk directly from a sawmill here in the US ( and I don’t mind paying a bit more (it’s really the shipping that drives up the price) because it’s a pleasure to carve with the wood for hours at a time. Plus they cut the wood to my specifications, which is great. Good luck!
                        My Website:


                        • #13
                          Thanks everyone ill give a look on all the resource posted, love you


                          • #14
                            Carlo you are fortunate to have the worlds best woodcarving school near you in the UK.
                            I'm sure if you contact them they will be able to provide great sources for the wood needed to do your type of carving.
                            School for wood
                            carving Schleegasse 1
                            3855 Brienz
                            033 952 17 51

                            [email protected]

                            "Quality is not expensive. It is priceless!"