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  • Having trouble finding wood

    Hi,

    I'm trying to get hold of some blocks of wood for carving but can't find anything online. I want some nice big blocks. Like 0.5m. Can anybody help?

    Much appreciated x

  • #2
    Only place I buy basswood in Mainland USA https://heineckewood.com/ as shipping cost is good and so is the wood is the best. The rest of my wood was either purchased from Woodcraft very expensive or from woodturning shop supplies who carry blocks of wood. Today I get throwaways from woodturners and pro craftsmen who only use the best exotic woods. Or you can follow the group of people who fell trees and grab your own greenwood. I know one guy you made friends with the guys who cut trees for a living. People I know I carve when they chop down a tree, they show up wanting some cash which they do not get normally....because the tree is diseased or bugs or just plain bad wood...., sorry I can not carve that it is junk wood. One person thought his tree was worth its weight in gold because it was koa....he was mad when I offer only 50 dollars for the truck load. Because there were only a few pieces that did not have a disease.
    . Explore! Dream! Discover!” aloha Di

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    • #3
      It is very unlikely you will find any source for carving blocks .5 m (19 inches) square. As a glue-up it would be prohibitively expensive. As a cutdown tree it would have the risks described by DiLeon (above). If you are taking up sculpture, perhaps you should stick to stone.

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      • #4
        Short answer: NO!

        Drying wood is measured in years per inch so 4” thick and 6” wide is about the max most mills provide.

        I have some 18” diameter aspen logs in the garage and it carves nice could be an option.

        If you want to do larger projects you’ll likely need to do glue ups.

        I am curious what is it you want to carve?


        Just thinking that is going to be a really big spoon.
        Last edited by Nebraska; 01-19-2022, 12:14 PM.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Nebraska View Post
          Short answer: NO!

          Drying wood is measured in years per inch so 4” thick and 6” wide is about the max most mills provide.

          I have some 18” diameter aspen logs in the garage at it carves nice could be an option.

          If you want to do larger projects you’ll likely need to do glue ups.

          I am curious what is it you want to carve?


          Just thinking that is going to be a really big spoon.
          I always wonder why you did glue-ups....now I know why you do not use whole wood. I can get blocks as big as I want including ones the size of a car. I have had wood delivery to my house ...brought in with cranes and five muscled big men to carry it into my studio. Woodcraft here has big blocks that size but you going to pay about 300 dollars for the hardwood and up. I know a woodturner who gets blocks size of washing machine do giant size bowl. But you have to hook into the right people like woodturners who know where to get this wood or wood sculptor whole make large carving....chainsaw artist is always getting extra big size wood. Of course, you go to a standard mill you can not get blocks but I have a miller who will get and cut them for me....not that hard to ask if they would be willing to cut you a piece. The last walnut piece I had was cut by special order at a regular mill it was 20 inches but it was a special order and I had to wait to whenever they could get to it. Not easy to find but doable. The last thing on the face of the earth would I recommend carving stone as Phil suggested. If it was that hard we would have no chainsaw carvings. There are resources you need to find them. I have tons of gaint blocks of wood sitting in my studio....that is big and super heavy. Heinecke Wood Products you can order any size block you want with no minimum size order, harder to get bigger pieces, and yes you're going to pay for it and shipping, but it does not hurt to ask the owner if you are willing to pay the bucks, I do not think they have changed their any size orders....although I have not ordered wood from them in some time.
          . Explore! Dream! Discover!” aloha Di

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          • #6
            IMG_0170 (1).jpg This piece of wood a major commission...was approximate 6 ft by 8 ft. across and 4 feet high for a pool bar. The person for who it was commissioned was told that they would have to get and purchase and deliver the wood (which he did) because we did not have the resources. It arrived on a semi tracker trailer and was told I was to carve it on the tracker trail which I refused, I was not working in the sun on no trailer that I had to climb on in the middle of a field...the wood weighed tons and I told them if they did not get off the trailer was not carving it...to find someone else. They found a crane to get off. Wood was found by a top professional chainsaw carver. It was dropped where they parked the trailer and they tented it for me to work on and electricity was hooked up at a building 100 ft away. Some things are not easy ... but you can find big wood if you have the right resources. Every day I had to haul my tools in a wheelbarrow and carve on-site....it last really huge work I ever did.
            Last edited by DiLeon; 01-18-2022, 03:26 PM.
            . Explore! Dream! Discover!” aloha Di

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            • #7
              Really big wood in this day and time is hard to find with consistent quality throughout the block.
              You just aren't going to find a good piece.
              More and more often now, for the First Nations carvers in the Pacific Northwest, they work with glue-ups of top quality pieces which are surprisingly well matched. That will cost a bundle. Still, that's the direction that I recommend.

              Even the chainsaw carving competitions are using mostly glue-ups.
              Good specialty business making those things.
              The last few 40' western red cedar ocean canoes have been carved from deadfalls away back in the forest, maybe laid there for half a century or more.

              Where I live, I can go straight to any of several local cedar mills and ask for a good log piece.
              There will be knots so you have to figure out how to limit the waste.
              I might have to wait months, maybe only tomorrow! Nobody has a big enough log sort yard to
              give carvers a whole lot of choice.

              Maybe I get lucky. Found an 8'x 16" log with 4" core rot and the rest of it was clear rainbow (striped) WRC. That was 20 years ago.
              Brian T

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              • #8
                I see lots of disease wood, insect wood, most wood is not carvable...but I learned if I want to carve I put my name in....and wait it will show up. Here the good wood is hard to find yes....but it is still out there at least here. I know in mainland USA especial the east tons of land have been cleared for agriculture...in fact, where I grew up there are no more woods like there was 60 years ago...in fact, the houses have zero trees. Ugly....and raped lands. People cut down trees and often use them for firewood...leaving the land bare. Perhaps where Phil lives no medium size carving wood left.....just rocks like Easter Islands then yes go carve rocks. . If you can not find wood to carve...then it is a major disaster that needs to be addressed now. We have Koa trees can not find any more and can not buy all sellers have shut down. But I had no idea it was so bad in America that you can not find a medium-size block of wood...that is shocking!!
                . Explore! Dream! Discover!” aloha Di

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by DiLeon View Post
                  Di...your work is simply breathtaking!!!!

                  What did you use to carve that?

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by tbox61 View Post

                    Di...your work is simply breathtaking!!!!

                    What did you use to carve that?
                    This was a four-team process....two master chainsaw artists did the rough out work...and then it was delivered to the owner's site and then I was hired to detail work. I had trouble with this one as it was not my design....and rather than using more real animals it was very Disney-looking. Anyway, I used die grinders, and angle grinders with 1/4 sabruutooth burrs, and disc. had to use chisels. I used drills with large bits to make holes to make the chisel work easier. I used Arbortech Industrial Woodcarver ...I have two that I interchange as they get hot. I used all ten of my Dremels like tools plus two mini angle grinders with two-inch chainsaws and donut burrs. I used about five different sanders... The animals go all the way around and this pic is not finished work, but I could not find those pics. It has holes on top of the bar top that have eels in them ...they are life-size...eels were inserted into the holes and filled with epoxy. Those holes were a pain in the rear end laying on the table and dig them out to put the eels into each hole.

                    I have done tables bigger than this the last one I did was huge... about six-foot by 12-foot table solid base with a glass topper. Those tables had real-looking tuna swimming and a lot more open-air....those jobs were also a three-person team...I took over when the whole thing was generally roughed out. Maile hated doing anything that was not fast like the chainsaw. and moreover major hated doing detail work....so I was hired to take over after they chainsaw the fish or sea animals. I do not do the finished work but a pro craftsman does the epoxy work or whatever kind of finish used...which is ok by me. I can not afford the top, top-of-line 140 dollars a gallon finishes they want on the work.

                    This kind of work is really hard on me between my shoulders are really bad, my back has OA, and the rest of me is hanging...LOL, I have had a few people approach me for more commission work but my body is not working well right now. I wish I had pics of those tables they were fine-looking....but my computer took a dump and I had not saved them plus I never saw the total finished work. ...poop happens. These jobs got me hooked on using grinders for sanding and that was new...I was shocked how much they grind wood down and fast. Alot of chainsaw pros showing me tips.. learned a lot doing that kind of work.
                    . Explore! Dream! Discover!” aloha Di

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                    • #11
                      Reese Wittledaspoon Give Heinecke a call at 715-822-3524 Tell them what size you want and ask for a quote. It will be a glue-up, but from what I've seen, they do a good job on it. I personally don't carve anything that big, it can't hurt to call them.

                      Claude
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