chestnut - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 09-14-2019, 04:40 PM Thread Starter
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chestnut

A friend is getting me some chestnut. I don't see it for sale anywhere so I am wondering if it is good for turning?
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post #2 of 8 Old 09-15-2019, 12:02 PM
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There isn't enough chestnut currently growing to have a market for the wood. In my experience is is a lot like oak. Some folks turn oak and some do not. Some wood is subject to tear out chips and chunks. You really won't know till you try. IS this "old" wood or new wood. There are still a few chestnut logs laying in the woods 70 years after the trees died that have some usable lumber in them. Most however are rotted beyond any salvage. There are sometimes, Chinese Chestnut and other chestnut trees available. In addition Buckeye is sometimes called horse chestnut.
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post #3 of 8 Old 09-15-2019, 04:09 PM
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I have some of the old antique chestnut that was used in making pews for a church south of Oxford Mississippi. The pews were built in the turn of the 19th century so this had to have been harvested probably in the late 1700s.

The wood is much lighter in weight than oak and is softer. It has a mellow tan look. Ash could pass for the grain as they look somewhat alike, just not in color. They don't machine the same either, the Chestnut machines much better than Ash.

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post #4 of 8 Old 09-15-2019, 08:02 PM
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Ive worked with some turn of the century stuff. Well, turn of A century, dates back to the early 1800's if my supplier can be trusted (he can). Lovely stuff to work with, little on the soft side though. Not horribly splintery. Cant say ive tried turning it, but sharp tools and i cant imagine youd have a problem

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post #5 of 8 Old 09-16-2019, 12:56 AM
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If it is wormy chestnut, I don't know if the worms came because of the blight or if the worms are naturally in the wood or ?? Is it a bug that left the holes or tracks in the wood?

Any how it will be interesting to see a piece turned. I googled wormy chestnut bowl, and there several pictures. So maybe it turns ok. If you cut across or along a worm hole, it may have some interesting character to the looks.
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post #6 of 8 Old 09-16-2019, 10:17 PM
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I've turned two or three chestnut bowls. The tree was cut about nine or so years ago. The wood was hard, but not unmanageable, but it's been a while since, and I don't remember much about the actual turning. I'm actually turning a small one now. I'll let you know how it goes.

John
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post #7 of 8 Old 09-17-2019, 11:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jspriddy View Post
I've turned two or three chestnut bowls. The tree was cut about nine or so years ago. The wood was hard, but not unmanageable, but it's been a while since, and I don't remember much about the actual turning. I'm actually turning a small one now. I'll let you know how it goes.

John
John, a chestnut should make a very nice bowl. I sure would like to see some pictures when your through.

Don in Murfreesboro, TN.
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post #8 of 8 Old 09-23-2019, 10:42 PM
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John, a chestnut should make a very nice bowl. I sure would like to see some pictures when your through.
Finished it this weekend. The white around the rim on the first picture is from the flash. I'm not the world's greatest photographer. I'll try later without the flash.

The wood was hard but finished well. I sanded through 1500 grit until I could see distinct reflections, then used friction polish and then wax. These pictures don't do the finish justice. I have 2 (3?) other bowls that are chestnut that turned out better than this, but haven't made pictures yet.

Chestnut is definitely worth the time.

John
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