Turning wood before it's dry - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 8 Old 07-22-2008, 11:21 AM Thread Starter
 
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Turning wood before it's dry

I recently got my hands on a bit of 3"x3"x12" ebony. This is the chunkiest piece of ebony I've ever seen and it's perfect jet black - a real find. The gotcha is this: it's part seasoned. Based on research online, it seems that even if I could dry it without it cracking, I could be waiting upwards of 10 years (1 year per inch for most stuff, however ebony is very dense and needs to dry very slowly to avoid cracking).

So what I did was this: turn it into a finished piece and give it several coats of shellac (on the base too, which I normally leave unfinished) and a liberal coating of paste wax. Hopefully the finish will keep the rate of moisture loss very slow, so the piece won't crack. It may not dry out fully within my lifetime, but if it doesn't crack or rot, who cares?

Anyone else tried this? Does it work? Has anyone got any opinions/tips/useful anecdotes about turning wood then sealing it quickly?
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post #2 of 8 Old 07-22-2008, 05:24 PM
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Byrney
I always turn wet wood, just cut down and turned immediately at times. Shellac is good for sealing the end grain as is sanding sealer and white shellac and var also will seal the end grain.You say you never seal the base, which is the endgrain, that is a mistake. The endgrain(top and botom) is what needs sealed to prevent cracking. This isn't a fool proof method but I only lost a few turnings since doing it this way. Let's see a picture of your turning. Mitch
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post #3 of 8 Old 07-22-2008, 08:27 PM
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wet turns

Byrney,
I have turned some wood in similar situations as what you mentioned. I buy a lot of 3 x 3 x 12 blanks in various exotic woods. Most are cut green and then sealed right away. I have had a few develop fine cracks after sitting for a few weeks. What is it you turned from the blank? I have also got 3/4 of the way through a peppermill and discovered the blank was a little greener than I thought. I took it and put it in a spare microwave for 5 minutes at at time at half power. I let it cool down for about 20 minutes between each zapping. I weighed it on a digital postal scale each time and noted the weight. After 9-10 zaps, the weight quit dropping. The piece turned out well and seems to be holding up well.
Mike Hawkins
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post #4 of 8 Old 07-23-2008, 04:48 AM
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I also learnt the hard way. As a complete novice I tried a bowl, wet wood, which is on the forum somewhere, and it split because I left it to thick.I then tried thinning the final cut which has mishaped very slightly but has been more successful.
I've had some success but no splitting since. Perhaps not as good as others but I think the learning curve is a pleasant one to follow in this hobby.
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post #5 of 8 Old 08-30-2008, 01:06 AM
 
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I have Juniper wood on my ranch and was wondering how to best harvest it for woodturning and woodworking projects?
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post #6 of 8 Old 09-03-2008, 05:28 PM
 
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Turning wet or green wood

I had a good teacher when I started turning. green magnolia is the most beauttiful both to look at and to turn. He showed me a trick to prevent warping and splitting. Submerge the finished piece in anti-freeze. That;s right regular automotive anti-reeze. It worked for me.
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post #7 of 8 Old 09-03-2008, 10:30 PM
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turning wood before it is dry

Quote:
Originally Posted by Forrest View Post
I had a good teacher when I started turning. green magnolia is the most beauttiful both to look at and to turn. He showed me a trick to prevent warping and splitting. Submerge the finished piece in anti-freeze. That;s right regular automotive anti-reeze. It worked for me.
Forrest
That may very well work but you are dealing with pure poison.There are so many other methods that are totaly safe.Once you start turning it again ,especially after it drys and the dust starts flyin you have the poison dust in the air.I would not recommend it for those reasons.
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post #8 of 8 Old 09-04-2008, 12:02 AM
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I agree with woodsman. I never heard of that before. I hope you don't practice that method. Wood dust alone can do a number on you.(found out today from a posting some wood is worse then others) and then to add anti-freeze into the wood.

I don't plan my day in advance cause the word "Premeditated" ends up flying around the court room.......
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