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-   -   Can I use a Blue Spruce for furniture? (https://www.woodworkingtalk.com/f2/can-i-use-blue-spruce-furniture-44299/)

TrevorCiovacco 10-31-2012 06:33 PM

Can I use a Blue Spruce for furniture?
 
A blue spruce pine, that's a staple of the house a grew up in, recently fell over in a hurricane on the East Coast.

I was wondering if it's worth saving to use for a future project.
I want to use it for anything that will work, but I was really hoping to turn it into a butcherblock countertop for my kitchen.

Anyone know if this is a possibility? Or what my options are?

ryan50hrl 10-31-2012 06:49 PM

I'm guessing you won't want to use pine for counter tops... its going to be too soft for that. However, if its good wood I wouldn't just throw it out.....

Steve Neul 10-31-2012 06:52 PM

Blue spruce and pine are two different species but either can be used for furniture. I think it would be too soft for the butcherblock. Unless it just has sentimental value I think you will find out it's more trouble to turn into lumber and season it than it's worth. I can't offer any suggestions. I think the wood will be to bland to turn into cookies.

Wema826 10-31-2012 07:39 PM

being that it is a soft wood, could it be possible to use it to make shop furniture? I:E bench tops, shelving, cabinet frames? it would be put to good use and you would see it every time you're in your shop!

mike1950 10-31-2012 08:43 PM

Does it have a lot of limbs- if so it wont make very good lumber.

Midlandbob 10-31-2012 10:22 PM

Most spruce has pitch pockets also. Is is not a good wood for most all but more rustic furniture. Some have had interesting results turning whole chunks of spruce with a row of knots around the perimeter.
A lot of construction wood is cut from spruce in Canada.

mike1950 11-01-2012 08:47 AM

I have some Sitka spruce from canada- 3"x20"x9' and no knots or flaws. They are quite a bit different tree. I got some blue spruce boards for free- almost solid knots, ended up as fire wood..........

TrevorCiovacco 11-02-2012 07:00 AM

Thanks for the responses.

It has a lot of sentimental value, so I'm going to dry it out and see where it goes from there.

My dream is to turn it into an endgrain butcher block countertop, but it being a very soft wood, I know its going to be a challenge. I just like the idea of getting everyday use,for the whole family to appreciate, out of a tree that means a lot to us.

Someone suggested using the roots and stump to make a coffee table, anyone have experience with a project like that?

Gilgaron 11-02-2012 09:49 AM

You could also consider different kitchen knick knacks if the yield ends up being low... a jelly cupboard, cookbook holder, papertowel holder, or even a knife block where the softness either wouldn't matter or would be a plus.

JMacFadden 04-19-2019 10:16 AM

Hi my Mom just had a large Blue Spruce limb fall. I appreciate all of the ideas. I would like to help her have a keepsake piece from the limb. The comments above will be helpful.



Julie

Wrightsville, PA

Steve Neul 04-19-2019 10:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JMacFadden (Post 2051095)
Hi my Mom just had a large Blue Spruce limb fall. I appreciate all of the ideas. I would like to help her have a keepsake piece from the limb. The comments above will be helpful.



Julie

Wrightsville, PA

It's difficult to make something from a limb like that. If the limb was alive when it was broken off it could take many years before it was really stable enough to use. A lot depends on the size of the limb. What you need to do is figure out what you want to make and roughly cut it out for that. This would allow it to dry quicker. If it is a large limb the ends would need to be coated with something like Anchorseal or gulf wax to prevent the ends from drying too fast. When wood dries too fast it causes the ends to crack and split. This happens sometimes anyway but you could reduce the severity by coating the ends. Just so you know there is a general rule of thumb for wood cut into lumber it takes a year for every inch thickness for the wood to dry enough to use. For a limb with the bark on it that timeframe would be a lot longer.

Tony B 04-19-2019 11:53 AM

Get a lathe and try turning Christmas ornaments and candle sticks. After the wood settles to 8%Moisture Content (which could take a year or more sitting indoors), you might be able to get some straight pieces for small picture frames.
BTW, if you get a lathe, you could become addicted. Nothing more relaxing than watching concentric circles and letting your chisels and gouges flow with the wood. You been warned.

35015 04-20-2019 12:08 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TrevorCiovacco (Post 394356)
A blue spruce pine...recently fell over in a hurricane on the East Coast...I was wondering if it's worth saving to use for a future project.

I would have to see pictures of the tree/log to give you a better answer, but yes its worth saving, especially if it has intrinsic value to you...:smile2:

Quote:

Originally Posted by TrevorCiovacco (Post 394940)
...I want to use it for anything that will work, but I was really hoping to turn it into a butcherblock countertop for my kitchen...Anyone know if this is a possibility? Or what my options are?

Yes...to the first question...and "many options" to the second...

Quote:

Originally Posted by TrevorCiovacco (Post 394940)
...Someone suggested using the roots and stump to make a coffee table, anyone have experience with a project like that?

Yes, I have experience with just projects.

Much of what your asking is not in the realm of common woodworking practice today (modern time thinking) as it was a standard practice in the past.

Drying out the wood isn't even a necessity if one embraces the more traditional methods of woodworking, but again, these are different standards, approaches and skill sets within woodworking that most do not practice today...

Let me know if I can expand on anything...

j

35015 04-20-2019 12:13 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JMacFadden (Post 2051095)
Hi my Mom just had a large Blue Spruce limb fall. I appreciate all of the ideas. I would like to help her have a keepsake piece from the limb. The comments above will be helpful...Julie

Hello Julie,

Yes you can use "limb wood" to make all manner of useful thing...

From kitchen utensil to other items of use and aesthetic beauty. The skill sets are primarily traditional as are the tools that make most of these from my perspective and what I do in woodworking...

I must share that "limb wood" is notoriously reactionary in nature as wood goes. It is also best worked "green" and not seasoned for most utilitarian applications.

To employ it dried will take a number of years and a larger sized limb.

Pictures would be helpful...

j

JMacFadden 04-22-2019 09:23 AM

Thanks for the advice
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Steve Neul (Post 2051099)
It's difficult to make something from a limb like that. If the limb was alive when it was broken off it could take many years before it was really stable enough to use. A lot depends on the size of the limb. What you need to do is figure out what you want to make and roughly cut it out for that. This would allow it to dry quicker. If it is a large limb the ends would need to be coated with something like Anchorseal or gulf wax to prevent the ends from drying too fast. When wood dries too fast it causes the ends to crack and split. This happens sometimes anyway but you could reduce the severity by coating the ends. Just so you know there is a general rule of thumb for wood cut into lumber it takes a year for every inch thickness for the wood to dry enough to use. For a limb with the bark on it that timeframe would be a lot longer.

Steve, thank you for the advice. Julie

JMacFadden 04-22-2019 09:26 AM

Blue Spruce
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Jay C. White Cloud (Post 2051281)
Hello Julie,

Yes you can use "limb wood" to make all manner of useful thing...

From kitchen utensil to other items of use and aesthetic beauty. The skill sets are primarily traditional as are the tools that make most of these from my perspective and what I do in woodworking...

I must share that "limb wood" is notoriously reactionary in nature as wood goes. It is also best worked "green" and not seasoned for most utilitarian applications.

To employ it dried will take a number of years and a larger sized limb.

Pictures would be helpful...

j

Jay thank you. I will make sure to send a picture. Julie


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