Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Jacksonville, NC
What size turning blanks did you buy and are they completely sealed?
Thickness more than length what need to pay attention too. Obviously thicker wood takes longer to dry. Most vendors sell turning blanks completely sealed in paraffin wax. If so scrap or cut away sealed sides, leave ends alone.
Want to let Purple Hearts while easy to dry takes little more time. Some species of Purple Heart prone to both minor side and end checking. So personally would not microwave, am sure others have.
Osage orange pretty easy to dry.
Turners and carvers have moved away from wrapping blanks in newspaper and replaced with paper bags. John correct saying no need for either, you want air circulation.
Depending upon thickness, where you live (relative humidity) may take couple of weeks, month or longer hanging out in shop. Since giving away or selling handles want to err on side of caution, take little time.
Here is a Dog Wood tool handle made last month. Cut this Dog Wood last January and end sealed, stored in woodshed until last month, MC probably around 20%. Measures 1 ½” x 2” x 14” and moisture content around 14% now. That 14% is within plus or minus in use EMC for my area. That 20% a SWAG, 14% measured this morning with General moisture meter from Lowes.