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Wood??? (Read 1,554 times)
 
JimQuarles
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Wood???
Sep 4th, 2005 at 10:36pm
 
Out here in Arizona we don't see much Oak or Maple or Walnut except at Woodworkers Source, Rocklers, or WoodCraft.  I have already gotten a scrap of Ash, and been offered and turned down, Palo Verde (extremely poisonous) and Eucalyptus (center so dry it shatters).  Just from looking at one log, I passed on Palm when a neighbor had one taken down.
What I want to know, does any one know anything about the turning qualities of various citrus woods?  Orange, Lemon, Grapefruit?  I haven't seen any in the galleries.  How about Aspen, I can get that in Flagstaff?

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texascop47
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Re: Wood???
Reply #1 - Sep 5th, 2005 at 4:19am
 
Jim I have turned Orange and Grapefruit and it turned real well and has some interesting patterns.  If you can get a crouch piece it is worth it.  I have turned a little aspen and it turns OK just not a very interesting wood to me.  I have seen some nice pieces that were made from aspen so it is up to the turner.
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Jeff Matter
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Re: Wood???
Reply #2 - Sep 5th, 2005 at 4:34am
 
I just got a piece of grape fruit and turned it to see what it was like. Its very soft and easy to turn but rather plain white looking grain. A crotch piece would prolly be better tho. Living in Florida, we have tons of citrus. I havent tried orang yet tho, still new to solid turning
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Lee Goehring
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Re: Wood???
Reply #3 - Sep 5th, 2005 at 4:38am
 
The aspen I've turned was pretty plain, tended to be soft, and "fuzzed" a lot on the surface. That can be sanded down. I have found some interesting pieces that had knots, or other defects in the wood producing some neat patterns. The side grain can show some good reflection or chatoyance.
I haven't tried any of the citrus woods, but my attitude is try anything you can find that doesn't have obvious problems like toxicity, excess decay, or other issues. That's one of the advantages we have as turners - we aren't limited to the well known standard species you can buy at the lumber yard.
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Philip Peak
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Re: Wood???
Reply #4 - Sep 5th, 2005 at 5:20am
 
Just have to be careful with drying it, as fruit wood tends to crack very easily.  I have turned what I was sure was dry apple and it still got small cracks.  It is nice wood though.  As you know I have a bunch of walnut that I would be happy to trade for some of your desert woods.  let me know.  
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« Last Edit: Sep 5th, 2005 at 5:20am by Philip Peak »  

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Curt Fuller
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Re: Wood???
Reply #5 - Sep 5th, 2005 at 6:28am
 
I've seen some pretty nice things turned from grapefruit but never tried it myself. As for Aspen, I've turned a lot of it. It needs to be rough turned green and dried to get rid of most the fuzzyness. Dead trees deteriorate pretty fast. Look for pieces with knots or bug work to find more character. When finished it is very light, almost like balsa wood. But if you're going to be in the Flagstaff area try to pick up some Juniper and Pinyon pine. Juniper is one of my favorite woods to work with. Besides being incredibly pretty wood and nice to turn, the smell is wonderful. I saw some pinyon pieces in a gallery at the Grand Canyon a couple years ago that were fantastic too.
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Gil Jones
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Re: Wood???
Reply #6 - Sep 5th, 2005 at 7:20am
 
For some ideas about what citrus and palm woods look like turned, check out this site. John Penrod is a member of our turning club, and a very nice person.
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Chris Wright
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Re: Wood???
Reply #7 - Sep 5th, 2005 at 7:48am
 
For the most part citrus woods are fairly boring and crack very easily due to their HIGH moisture content and soft wood fibers.  They release so much water so fast when they dry most pieces destroy themselves.  The orange & lemon I had I turned 8 pieces ranging from 5" dia - 12" all but 1 piece literally split in 1/2.

Aspen is a terrific turning wood, I love to turn it.  It is slightly boring unless you get a figured or crotch piece, but it burns and colors very nicely.
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JimQuarles
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Re: Wood???
Reply #8 - Sep 5th, 2005 at 11:51am
 
Everyone,  I appreciate the feedback.  Being new, I still am feeling my way around what I can and can't do or use.  I hadn't thought of the Juniper & Pinon Pine.  The palm I've seen mostly looks like a bundle of reeds jammed together.
Thanks!

JimQ
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E. Bud Gillaspie
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Re: Wood???
Reply #9 - Sep 5th, 2005 at 12:11pm
 
Jim, up NW of Wickenberg there are (used to be) many pecan orchards. Pecan is very pretty. Also around Phx there used to be an avacado orchard or 2. Avacado wood is beautiful. I'd love to have a few chunks of that. I'm also told date palm turns well. Another sometimes pretty wood is "Salt Cedar."
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