Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Whittemore, Michigan
Seeking Advice - Carving Blocks - How picky are you? Typical sizes sought after?
We are currently producing thousands of board feet of basswood carving blocks, and have a question regarding defects in the wood. As you probably well know, knots, cracks, wane, and streaks are often unavoidable after basswood logs have been sawed and kiln dried. Now that we are in the final production stage of creating these blocks, we are wondering how picky we need to be with eliminating all of this from our blocks. We hate to waste wood, but I understand that certain defects greatly decrease the carvability of the wood. We have eliminated the majority of the defects throughout the production process, but are still left with some stragglers now that we are chopping them to their final lengths. See the pictures below. Almost all of the defects are found at the ends, edges, or corners of the block, which will likely be carved off anyways, correct? Will any streaks in the wood get covered up with paint in most cases? I've actually heard that some carvers enjoy some wane "bark" toward the edges of the blocks because the grain toward the edge of the log carves nicely. I'm sure many of this depends on the carver and the project, but we are seeking a "general rule of thumb" answer.
Also, what are some common sizes sought after for basswood blocks? We are currently doing 6, 12, 18, and 24 inch lengths at various thicknesses and widths. Any suggestions?
Thank you so much in advance. We truly value your input, because without it, we wouldn't be able to produce the quality products you desire, and would be doing this blindly.
-Janish Woodworks, Inc