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Problem Carving Too Dry Wood?

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  • Mudbone
    replied
    Re: Problem Carving Too Dry Wood?

    Thats a sweet sailin ship! Gonna look great on someones wall!!!

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  • Ron Davidson
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    Re: Problem Carving Too Dry Wood?

    I had a piece of mahogony that was so dry it gave me problems carving it and I have used and still use the water and alcohol mixture but in this case I used 30 weight motor oil. I brushed it on and let it soak in and then carve until it got to the dry wood again. Worked pretty good this way. I posted a picture of the results. it is 3" thick and 18X24

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  • Callynne
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    Re: Problem Carving Too Dry Wood?

    Dave, I always keep a spritz bottle of 50% water/50% rubbing alcohol handy. I never had a problem with just using tap water though.....sort of makes you wonder what you're drinking, huh?

    We used to have well water but hubby insisted on switching over to city water two years ago, he has high blood pressure and thought it would have less salt in than our conditioned/softened well water.....I didn't but he won out! All I know, is that the cast iron steamer that sets on top of the woodburner now 'grows' a really thick, heavy white crust that you have to scrap off! He says it's calcium deposit....looks like salt to me.....either way, that never happened with our well water!!

    Anyway, back to the carving part....I think that the alcohol helps keep any mildew from growing on the wood too. I never thought about it helping open the fibers, but that makes sense, it certainly does make a huge difference in making the wood easier to carve, that's for sure! Thanks for mentioning it! Deborah

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  • Mudbone
    replied
    Re: Problem Carving Too Dry Wood?

    Hey Dave, Thanks for the tip! I am carving some cypress right now and not only is it dry but if your familiar with cypress it is sort of "stringy" for lack of better word. ou know when you have to go cross grain its really hard to get a good cut. Anyway I am going to try your mix and see if it helps...
    Tom

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  • DewragDave
    started a topic Problem Carving Too Dry Wood?

    Problem Carving Too Dry Wood?

    I find that sometimes wood is almost too dry to carve easily, especially in the winter when the humidity is low. It seems to splinter out and dull the tools faster than wet wood. The solution that I found is to mix distilled water and rubbing alcohol in a 50/50 proportion and spray it on the wood with a misting spray bottle. I saturate the area that I'm ready to carve and let it soak in for a few seconds. What apparently happens is the water absorbs into the wood and keeps the alcohol from drying out too soon. Then the alcohol makes the tool glide along more smoothly and cuts down on sharpening. Try it and see if you have the same results. PS: I use distilled water to cut down on mold growing in the bottle. You would think that the alcohol would do this but whatever is in my tap water seems to get nasty after a couple of weeks in the bottle.
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