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  • Catalpa Tree wood?

    Got a few questions on Catalpa wood? Have a few trees that I plan on cutting down and have sawed into lumber. Plan on turning some into carving wood along with some to play with on the lathe.
    Being I'm new at this what size is best to have for carving? Will also being passing along some of it to a buddy of mine in East Tn. One tree is guessing 3ft or better through. 8ft log off that one. Then three more that is 28" through and can get 16ft or more out of these. These three I can remember when they were smaller trees. There on my old Home place, plan on cutting some of them down. As will be selling the place in a few years. And will keep the wood for a few projects I have planned.
    Will also have a few Pecan trees sawed up and 2 Persimmon trees. One of the Persimmon trees is around 20" or more through. Would part of these be good for carving also?
    Pete

  • #2
    Re: Catalpa Tree wood?

    CATALPA is ok for carving, its kind of stringy. Persimmon is hard and pecan is pretty hard.
    Depending on what you like to carve, one inch square, two inch square and three or four inch will carve most of the things you see here. length is up to you. I don't know much about Pecan but I still have some Persimmon head golf clubs around here and they are hard.
    Larry

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    • #3
      Re: Catalpa Tree wood?

      Persimmon would make some good mallets.

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      • #4
        Re: Catalpa Tree wood?

        Catalpa makes a pretty decent carving wood. Harder that bass & tends to kollow the grain. Makes very good looking carvings that you;re not going to paint. Presimmon is very hard , heavy ang close grained. As stated above, it was used for golf clubs. Should turn preety nice.Pecan is from the same family as hickory.

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        • #5
          Re: Catalpa Tree wood?

          I've carved pecan but only with power tools. I tried using gouges and knives but it was too hard. It does make some beautiful carvings, though! I hate to think of those grand old trees going. My sister just had to have a 60+ inch diameter pecan tree cut down because it was dying. I managed to rescue 12 feet of a limb about 20 inches d. Definitely chainsaw material!
          Hazel Strickland
          AKA Dixie Whittler

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          • #6
            Re: Catalpa Tree wood?

            I LOVE carving catalpa.. Had a decent sized tree removed (along the river, growing really nasty...) and saved the main trunk for carving/turning blocks. My tree was pretty fast growing, fair amount of ring spacing. It is grain-y and the grain is very prominent. Might not work for some carvings. As above, don't try to paint it. Catalpa air dried for me without a lot of trouble. Lost some to splitting, once it split it was done. Little or no end checking.
            Persimmon is called "American Ebony", and for good reason. HARD.
            If you get lucky enough to get some with a large diameter black heart... I have turned persimmon , mine had black streaks thru it. Very unpredictable coloring, really neat the way the bands wove thru it.

            Please put a knife/gouge to all of it..... You might find that you like all of them.

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            • #7
              Re: Catalpa Tree wood?

              Catalpa is my favorite next to butternut. Seal the ends and it dries well.

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