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Discussion Starter #1
Hey everyone,

I have a question about turning green wood. I have not turned since high school shop class 20+ years ago. My daughter has discovered wood turning in her shop class this year. SO we set her up an old lathe I had in the back of the machine shop. She is turning graver and hammer handles for me and some of my engraver buddies.
Here is a pic of some she made from maple and walnut during a snow day recently.

Some of my friends have requested she make chisel handles for hammer and chisel engraving as well as hammer handles from osage orange and purple heart. I have found a source for both of those woods with very reasonable prices. The thing is the woods are processed green and anchor sealed.

I know a lot of bowl turners like to turn green and dry after turning. What would my daughter need to do to turn these handle size pieces green and dry them after without a lot of warping and cracking issues?

Thanks in advance,
Ray
 

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For something like that I would probally cut a bunch of pieces to say a 3" square x 12" long and wax the ends and lay them up to dry. After a while you will have plenty of them dry. Just remember the more you put back to dry the more you will have later to turn. Start now and within 6 months you will have blanks all over dry enough to turn.
Don
 

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Thanks Don,

Would it help to wrap them in newspaper to draw moisture out?
About what moisture content am I shooting for? I do have a moisture meter to monitor them with.

Ray
 

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As long as the ends are sealed and stacked they will be fine. Get a quart of anchorseal and an old paint brush. Maybe write the date on the blank so you will know when it was put up. For blanks like that I would say a safe moisture content would be anything under 14%.
Don
 

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hi ray you say the timber is cut and sealed.well you are half way there then. if you get stock like that you can still rough turn it to sped it up you will have to leave every piece over size to allow for shrinking and warping start now before you know it you will have shed loads of the stuff
i do it a lot when making box and small stools. oops merely forgot some nice turnings there ray
all the best
Rob




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Nice turnings , young lady.
What are you using for a finish?

......and X2 what Don & Robbie suggested
 

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All of the above is good advice. Wrapping in newspaper doesn't help dry, it slows down the air movement which helps the wood dry more evenly and helps prevent cracking. It's not necessary on wood like that.
In my experience sealing the ends and putting it on a shelf to dry will work fine. It will take about 6 months or so for 1" handle sizes and maybe up to a year for thicker. It won't be furniture quality dry but will turn without checking most of the time.
If your in a hurry for some, dry it in the microwave. Weight it, I use postal scales but there are lot of inexpensive scales out there. I heat it for 20 seconds on high and feel how hot it is. Let it cool for several minutes and add more time if it doesn't feel quite warm to the touch. I put it on the scales and watch it loose weight while it's cooling.

It takes a bunch of cycles usually of about a minute or so. I put it in the microwave, heat it, then set it out to cool and go do something else. Then do it again each time I think about it. On small blanks probably 10 to 15 cycles gets you pretty close. When it stops losing weight. it's dry. It's actually dryer than needed and will pick up weight until it reaches equalibrium with the environment. However you can turn it when it's dry, just don't put the ferrul on untils reached a stable weight.
 

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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.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks to everyone for your input.

I was hoping for some chemical trick to be able to "cheat" but it sounds like you just cannot get around forced patients.:no:

For a finish on the maple she is using Pimo pipe briar stain. She puts on a first stain coat of either yellow or red. Then sands that back a bit. Then the brown stain goes on and after its dry she sands that back until she has the darkness she wants. Then two coats of Minwax rubbing urethane and a couple coats of spray on urethane.

The purple heart and osage I just bought are 3x3x12. I will resaw those into 1 1/2 square and reseal the ends and wait. I have a can of anchor seal from previous projects.

I turn a lot of acrylic stabilized wood on the fly rods I build but I have not turned bare wood for many years. Sounds like man still has not overcome nature. Anyway, Rachel and I appreciate you all being there and the help you give.
 

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Ray Cover said:
I was hoping for some chemical trick to be able to "cheat" but it sounds like you just cannot get around forced patients.
There is a product called Turners Choice from Cedarcide which is marketed to do just that. I bought some a while back and haven't seen any real benefit from it, but to be fair I haven't really tested it along with a control piece for comparison. I don't hear much chatter about it either so it's either the best kept secret or just isn't worth talking about. I'd love to know if anyone else has tried it.
http://www.cedarcidestore.com/catalog/item/3343694/2900278.htm
 

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Add Pentracyl and PEG to list of products most turners do not use too.

Cost, time, and mess big drawback, some complications gluing and finishing . If jump around Cedarcide site will find mineral oil, mineral spirits, as well as cedar oil and silicone mentioned. Could not find much on their wood turner's product.

You can put a small amount of liquid in a jar stick a piece of wood in there and watch liquid go from bottom to top of wood. Doesn’t mean wood is protected!

PEG
http://owic.oregonstate.edu/pubs/peg.pdf

PENTRACRYL
http://www.preservation-solutions.com/images/labels/pentacryl.pdf
 
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