Wood Carving Keeps The Mind Sharp

The weather has been changing radically over the last week, humidity as well as temperature. In most cases I do not have to charge this as a customer is not just inquiring about a carving but is serious about getting one done. FirewoodeditLog splitting is the act of splitting firewood from logs that have been pre- cut into sections (rounds, bolts, billets3). Damage from shrinkage is not a problem here, and the drying may proceed more rapidly than in the case of drying for woodworking purposes.

The primary reason for drying wood to a moisture content equivalent to its mean EMC under use conditions is to minimize the dimensional changes (or movement) in the final product. By doing this, one is essentially creating a solar kiln in which the carving is being dried gradually. Spoon carving greats usually flip the piece and square off the back at this point, preferring to carve the bowl of the spoon opposite from the curve of the log for the sake of visual appeal. NOTHING is foolproof and each wood is a little different… plus there are many MANY variations in the exact techniques of applying DWD for drying woods.

The roughed-turned blanks can be dried pretty quickly compared with trying to dry large, solid bowl blanks, and there’s probably no single better way to gain skills than to rough-turn green wood. Wood splitting (riving,1 cleaving) is an ancient technique used in carpentry to make lumber for making wooden objects, some basket weaving, and to make firewood.

In order to reduce the possibility of checking and ruining a nice piece of work, one needs to promptly remove most or all of the heartwood (the center of a log), thin out the remaining wood to it desired thickness, and get a generous coating of oil on the wood. If you don’t let green wood go through the drying stage, there is the inevitability for cracks and splits after you’ve carved and applied a finish to the bowl. Fresher palm wood equals softer easier carving, but greater chance of serious splitting and cracking. Painting a carving will generally cost between 15% and 20% of the total value of the carving.

The treatment oil is blended with lemon oil however still mixed with Hydrocarbon (Petroleum Derived Compound) which I don’t like it. This is my first time DIY using treatment oil on wood and have no idea how proper I would have treated the new woods and how well I can preserve them although they are guaranteed for 25 years. Traditionally elm wood has been used in wet environments such as waterwheels or village water pumps, because of its ability to resist rot. Some are very aggressive cutters, while others don’t bite the wood with quite so much force. Finally, use a very fine grade of paper, and sand only with the grain of the wood.

Buckeye is a favorite bowl wood as it carves easily and is light in weight, a characteristic which appeals to the housewife. Bound or hygroscopic water: Bound water is bound to the wood via hydrogen bonds The attraction of wood for water arises from the presence of free hydroxyl (OH) groups in the cellulose , hemicelluloses and lignin molecules in the cell wall. You’re nearly ready to remove waste wood from the center and to rough shape the sides.

You should already have decided if you ant to stain the wood or leave it natural for finishing. No matter what wood you use try to stay away from mixing heartwood and sapwood in the same piece. When the wood is freshly cut and green, the bark will peel fairly easily from most species of wood and some bark like cedar can even be peeled from dry wood. The same thing will happen to your carving wood if you do not seal the grain ends, as instructed above. The author stained one wand she made, but left the other natural to show off the grain of the wood.

SSV run at partial atmospheres (typically around 1/3 of full atmospheric pressure) in a hybrid of vacuum and conventional kiln technology (SSV kilns are significantly more popular in Europe where the locally harvested wood is easier to dry versus species found in North America). The wood could be developed more widely as a commercial timber, comparing favorably to black walnut. Some say that the majority of the carving should be limited to the top third of the stick so that it does not become overwhelming. I used a wooden spokeshave for this one and cherry is a wondrous wood to work with these two tools. Due to the tree type and life cycle most mango wood products are under 15” in diameter.

Now if you mill the raw log a year after cutting the tree down, then you’d probably have some drying already occurring, but the entire log won’t be dried sufficiently for fine woodworking. Carving Tip: If the wood is very hard and difficult to carve, make a solution that’s part water and part denatured alcohol and spray onto the wood to soften it. The alcohol helps the water to penetrate the wood faster. Also, after carving the bowl, final finish can be applied immediately, which is not the case with green wood. This process does work but doesn’t seem to dry the wood completely, which ultimately results in cracks!drying wood for carving

As wood carvers, this moisture content is both a blessing and a curse, but it is imperative that you understand how and when to work with this moisture instead of trying to fight the forces of nature. Free water is not in the same thermodynamic state as liquid water: energy is required to overcome the capillary forces Furthermore, free water may contain chemicals, altering the drying characteristics of wood. With regards to keeping the bark on the wood, my supplier” indicated that this would help insure even drying and eliminate any twisting, etc.

Side-grained hollow turnings will likewise go oval, a lot or a little, depending on the rates of shrinkage of the particular wood. There are exceptions to this rule – I have found a supply of imported American cherry, ash, maple etc which is correctly kiln dried down to 12% moisture or so. If you do find really well seasoned wood you will have to pay a high price for it. The inner moisture is released through these checks allowing the wood to close back up when it reaches an even dryness.

Step two: Start by cutting the wood block to a little longer than you need for the finished spoon and split it in half along its length. Air to blowout the free water from a turned piece, drying the surface enough to sand and/or prevent staining. If you want the ease of carving green wood treen but want it available right away it can be microwave dried. I then only persevered through all the carving mishaps, and sanded and oiled it despite its scorch mark, for the same reason. Kiln dried wood is usually recommended for woodworking projects since it’s more stable than green and air dried lumber.

If your carving is placed outdoors the best way to extend its life is to keep it out of direct sunlight and wind. Taking care to prepare carving blanks that have good grain and wood fiber orientation, they rarely lose more than a few percent to excessive checking and warping, but that takes experience in reading the wood. I do not see any dangers myself and I do modify my chains for carving to suit my needs.

Wood initially dries from the shell (surface), shrinking the shell and putting the core under compression. Personally I’ve never had a problem accessing 5 or 6 inch lime in England, but I have my own cut to 9 inch allowing considerable leeway in the choice of pose – if the wood is too small stick bits on. I brush green wood sealer over the entire piece of olive wood, which means the ends (number 1 priority and it is best to double coat them) as well as the faces and sides.drying wood for carving

I visited my shack in the Wisconsin woods in October and found that a bear had torn a big limb off the apple tree in the yard, either climbing to get the apples or just pulling down the limb to bring the high ones into reach. Controlling these factors, and thus the rate at which wood dries helps control possible defects. I use a tree a few inches in Diameter with some black cherry burls starting to grow out of it. It makes the lamp tower look more interesting. However, when we get free wood it is often green and depending upon our goals, we may need to wait for it to cure (dry).

Either way, now is the time to study the wood and get to know it a little before taking a knife to it. When carving, it’s much nicer to work with the wood than fight against it. Part of the reason why spoon carving is such a valuable teaching exercise on grain direction is that you aren’t working on a flat surface, like you would be with other hand tools. A carving from cottonwood may be intricate in detail , but the grain and finish of any softwood will never challenge the beauty of a carved piece of oak or pecan.