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Re: Cherry wood issue

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  • n7bsn
    ... ...em Where you using a skew or a gouge? I often get very fine shavings with dry fruit wood with a skew. Actually the only time I get big ones is with the
    Message 1 of 9 , Nov 5, 2009
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      --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, "Stu" <stu.shan@...> wrote:
      >
      > Hi all;
      >
      > I'm having an issue with some wood. Bit of back ground. A few years back a neighbour was cutting down a sweet cherry tree. I offered to do that and get rid of the waste in return for the tree. I cut then had a mill slab up my wood, stickered it and left it covered out beside my house for 3 years till my moisture meter indicated it was ready to go. Since then I have turned out all sorts of great stuff, both woodwinds and strings, from this wood. It has now sat btw, for a year in my garage. I ended up in a bed for a month with my back due to moving this stuff on my own. but I digress, as usual.
      >
      > However
      >
      > The last couple instruments I was making I started having an issue with the wood. It was now hard and flinty, easy to chip and prone to cracks invisible till I was just about done. Today I wanted to turn a wheel for an organistrum, the huge great grandaddy of the hurdy-gurdy. The wheel has a 4 inch diametre. No matter how sharp the tool, I could only just get the finest, almost dust shavings off of it and it was nasty slow slogging with frequent stops for tool touch ups. Finally 3 hours later(!) I had the wheel at a point I wanted to take some sandpaper to it. Stopped the lathe and the wheel was cracked radially in a dozen places.
      >
      > What is up here? Last time I had this much trouble was years ago when I decided to try using wood from a 50 year old slab of teak! The stuff is as flinty hard internally as on the surface and makes rock maple look like soft butter. This stuff used to be my favourite wood for turning as it was so responsive to the tools, but now it is less enjoyable than turning a rock.
      >
      > Any ideas on this? I'd really hate to have a 4'x4'x8' stack of incipient firewood here.
      >
      ...em

      Where you using a skew or a gouge? I often get very fine shavings with dry fruit wood with a skew. Actually the only time I get big ones is with the Easy Rougher or 2 inch roughing gouge
      Usually the only times I get cracks in dry wood were in "reaction" wood (branches and crotches). Actually reaction wood is very common in fruit trees (due to the pruning they get).
      I have cracked wood when there was some moisture still in it, and I get rough and got the wood warm. But that doesn't sound like this is the case here.
      Another thought just occurred to me, did you get the kind of heat we did this summer? It hit 40(C) this summer. That kind of heat could have over tempered the wood, since our wood is usually, well, like it is today 9(C) and 95%

      Ralg
      AnTir
      (PS still on track to be at Parksville in Dec)
    • Stu
      ... Skew, gouge, parting tool, I tried all sorts. ... Yeah, we did. We got 40C here and likely hotter in the enclosed carport/deck I have the wood in. Don t
      Message 2 of 9 , Nov 6, 2009
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        --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, "n7bsn" <n7bsn@...> wrote:
        >

        > Where you using a skew or a gouge? I often get very fine shavings with dry fruit wood with a skew. Actually the only time I get big ones is with the Easy Rougher or 2 inch roughing gouge

        Skew, gouge, parting tool, I tried all sorts.


        > Another thought just occurred to me, did you get the kind of heat we did this summer? It hit 40(C) this summer. That kind of heat could have over tempered the wood, since our wood is usually, well, like it is today 9(C) and 95%
        >

        Yeah, we did. We got 40C here and likely hotter in the enclosed carport/deck I have the wood in. Don't suppose there is any chance it will just er "relax" now the rainy season is here? I love the colours and hand feel of this wood and would hate to loose it.

        Stu
      • n7bsn
        ... It might, let is set a few more weeks and try a sample and see Ralg (skipping Crown Council) AnTir
        Message 3 of 9 , Nov 7, 2009
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          --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, "Stu" <stu.shan@...> wrote:


          >
          > Yeah, we did. We got 40C here and likely hotter in the enclosed carport/deck I have the wood in. Don't suppose there is any chance it will just er "relax" now the rainy season is here? I love the colours and hand feel of this wood and would hate to loose it.
          >

          It might, let is set a few more weeks and try a sample and see

          Ralg (skipping Crown Council)
          AnTir
        • Stu
          ... Will give that a shot Aleyn (skipping everything as most of our shire officially has h1n1 and we are selfish and don t want to share)
          Message 4 of 9 , Nov 7, 2009
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            --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, "n7bsn" <n7bsn@...> wrote:
            >
            >

            > It might, let is set a few more weeks and try a sample and see
            >
            > Ralg (skipping Crown Council)
            > AnTir
            >

            Will give that a shot


            Aleyn
            (skipping everything as most of our shire officially has h1n1 and we are selfish and don't want to share)
          • conradh@efn.org
            ... I ve run into the same problems with sweet cherry myself. I tried making a big dough trough, and hewing and carving involved vast effort to remove a tiny
            Message 5 of 9 , Nov 7, 2009
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              On Thu, November 5, 2009 1:43 pm, Stu wrote:

              > The last couple instruments I was making I started having an issue with
              > the wood. It was now hard and flinty, easy to chip and prone to cracks
              > invisible till I was just about done. Today I wanted to turn a wheel for
              > an organistrum, the huge great grandaddy of the hurdy-gurdy. The wheel
              > has a 4 inch diametre. No matter how sharp the tool, I could only just
              > get the finest, almost dust shavings off of it and it was nasty slow
              > slogging with frequent stops for tool touch ups. Finally 3 hours later(!)
              > I had the wheel at a point I wanted to take some sandpaper to it. Stopped
              > the lathe and the wheel was cracked radially in a dozen places.
              >

              I've run into the same problems with sweet cherry myself. I tried making
              a big dough trough, and hewing and carving involved vast effort to remove
              a tiny pile of chips.

              I just cut down a good sized cherry tree from a friend's yard, and unlike
              other cherry logs I've dealt with this one has several sections that split
              reasonably straight. It's no help to you with your own batch, but I'm
              going to follow the advice of several traditional woodworkers and do all
              the roughing out green, and as much as possible of that with froe and
              wedge instead of saws. Biggest problem with this one has been to actually
              decide in advance what I'll want to be finishing over the next few years!

              This will be my first time working cherry this way--but it works so well
              with oak and ash that I'm inclined to try. Getting it down into smaller
              pieces early will eliminate a lot of the strain that causes checking, and
              leaving the rough blanks somewhat oversize gives you some margin for
              correcting warpage--though this is far less on split wood than on sawn!

              I also always grease the endgrain heavily, including any knots that are
              exposed. I've even managed to dry madrone (Arbutus to you) this way with
              no checks, over about five years time.

              Please let us know how the various rehydration tricks that have been
              suggested work out for you. Don't see how they can heal cracks that have
              already happened, but perhaps you can improve the workability enough to
              make projects where cracks don't matter so much. At least it might save
              some pretty wood from the firewood pile.

              Ulfhedinn
            • n7bsn
              ... . Stopped ... Ya know, I have to say this is the first time I ve ever heard of anyone using grease. Wax, yes, heavy latex paint yes, wood-sealer yes.
              Message 6 of 9 , Nov 8, 2009
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                --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, conradh@... wrote:
                . Stopped


                > I also always grease the endgrain heavily, including any knots that are
                > exposed. I've even managed to dry madrone (Arbutus to you) this way with
                > no checks, over about five years time.
                >

                Ya know, I have to say this is the first time I've ever heard of anyone using grease. Wax, yes, heavy latex paint yes, wood-sealer yes. Grease, nope.

                Considering all the other options, I don't think I would try it myself.

                Have you ever tried to boil Madrone, no I'm not kidding. We boil it all the time here, usually never thicker then 2 inches. But boil it we do. Slabs, roughed blanks, chunks.

                Have a nearly zero failure rate.

                I usually boil for a couple hours, then let it cool. Remove and wood and that's it. I seldom wax or seal the wood. The current batch went straight to waiting for finish turning

                http://pics.livejournal.com/hrollaug/pic/0006dekf.jpg
                http://pics.livejournal.com/hrollaug/pic/0006b1kr.jpg

                TTFN
                Ralg
                AnTir
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