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harvesting wood questions (Read 3,048 times)
 
John Cepko
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Re: harvesting wood questions
Reply #15 - May 14th, 2016 at 12:16pm
 
Tony R. wrote:
Do you then have to paint or seal the rough turned b? Won't it crack as the moisture escapes, just like with logs?

Yes, I do.
I hit my rough turned bowls with a coat of anchor seal.
I lose very few bowls to cracking. If I do, it is because I left some pith in there somewhere.
They will warp, so leave the rough turned plenty wide, an inch or so is usually hood gor bowls up to 10" or so, maybe an inch and a quarter, or inch and a half for the largest bowls.
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Tony Rozendaal
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Re: harvesting wood questions
Reply #16 - May 17th, 2016 at 1:04pm
 
Mark Putnam wrote on May 14th, 2016 at 8:24am:
Do you then have to paint or seal the rough turned b? Won't it crack as the moisture escapes, just like with logs?


Yes, I seal the end grain of the green turned blank with AnchorSeal.
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Chris Gunsolley
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Re: harvesting wood questions
Reply #17 - May 19th, 2016 at 10:53am
 
John Cepko wrote on Jan 20th, 2016 at 1:17am:
I love tree crotches.
The 'V' usually is an interesting piece, and you get two per crotch.
Anything that a firewood splitter cant/'won't tackle is good for me.
I like trunks better than branch wood, unless the branch is huge.
Bradford Pear is brittle because the bark grows deep into the crotch, creating a weak place for the branch to break off at the slightest stress. For that reason BP crotches are out, they will fly apart on the lathe. Don't ask me how I know... But, it turns like butter, with long curlies, so get all the solid wood from that tree you can get.



John,

I know this may be tricky to describe, but how do you orient the bowls in the trunk to get two bowls out of the crotch, both exploiting the interesting grain patterns within the crotch?

For instance, say the crotch is standing vertically--approximately as one would naturally grow most of the time--and we're facing the "V" straight on... After cutting the branches off, in cutting the wood with your chainsaw to make blanks, would you cut the wood through the center, the way that you normally would to remove the pith in a cross-grain cut in a log without a crotch? So, where the branches intersect and mend into one piece of wood, one bowl would come from the crotch at the side where one branch was, and another would come from the side where the other branch was? To clarify, if the tree were still standing and we were to draw the bowls on the crotch in the tree, the bowls would be sideways, perpendicular to the ground but as high as possible on that crotch? Basically, one bowl would be on the left half, the other on the right half?

If that doesn't sound quite right, would you please attempt to describe how you would cut your blanks from the crotch to take full advantage of the grain patterns?

Please bear with me. This is tricky to describe and I'm sure to answer. But thank you.
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« Last Edit: May 19th, 2016 at 10:59am by Chris Gunsolley »  
 
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Mark Putnam
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Re: harvesting wood questions
Reply #18 - May 19th, 2016 at 11:10am
 
Take a look at this, Chris. This is my understanding of how most turners harvest crotch wood. This way you get two similar pieces to work with.

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Re: harvesting wood questions
Reply #19 - May 19th, 2016 at 11:21am
 
In a simplified view, a crotch is just a "Y".  The pith extends upward upwards through the main stem to the junction where it splits and secondary piths continue on through each branch of the "Y".   Imagine a plane that passes through the wood such that the "Y" shape is retained on both sides of the plane.  If the tree is truly symmetrical (and few are), that plane will pass through the main pith in the stem and the secondary pith in each branch.  Simply cut along that plane to create two blanks, each with that same basic 'Y" shape, and with one flat face (where the wood was cut through the pith), and one rounded face (the outside the tree).

If you are making conventional round bowls, just center the circle just below the junction, and adjust it to best use the available wood.  Or,  you can also make an asymmetrical bowl by mounting the blank on a woodworm screw that enters the flat face just below the junction.

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« Last Edit: May 19th, 2016 at 11:22am by Louie Powell »  

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Chris Gunsolley
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Re: harvesting wood questions
Reply #20 - May 19th, 2016 at 11:21am
 
Mark Putnam wrote on May 19th, 2016 at 11:10am:
Take a look at this, Chris. This is my understanding of how most turners harvest crotch wood. This way you get two similar pieces to work with.

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Oooh, nice! That's not what I was describing, so thank you for this because apparently in my conception above I was orienting the wood in a less optimal way. By this, you wouldn't cut the wood as if you're splitting the "V" as I described above, and I'd think of this better way as 'duplicating' the "V," as opposed to splitting it.
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« Last Edit: May 19th, 2016 at 11:25am by Chris Gunsolley »  
 
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Chris Gunsolley
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Re: harvesting wood questions
Reply #21 - May 19th, 2016 at 11:29am
 
Louie Powell wrote on May 19th, 2016 at 11:21am:
In a simplified view, a crotch is just a "Y".  The pith extends upward upwards through the main stem to the junction where it splits and secondary piths continue on through each branch of the "Y".   Imagine a plane that passes through the wood such that the "Y" shape is retained on both sides of the plane.  If the tree is truly symmetrical (and few are), that plane will pass through the main pith in the stem and the secondary pith in each branch.  Simply cut along that plane to create two blanks, each with that same basic 'Y" shape, and with one flat face (where the wood was cut through the pith), and one rounded face (the outside the tree).

If you are making conventional round bowls, just center the circle just below the junction, and adjust it to best use the available wood.  Or,  you can also make an asymmetrical bowl by mounting the blank on a woodworm screw that enters the flat face just below the junction.



Your description seems consistent with what Mark suggested with that picture, and thank you for the clarification.

Also, that's an interesting idea you have on the asymmetrical bowl from this section. I imagine the asymmetry combined with the dramatic grain patterns could get quite interesting...
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Don Stephan
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Re: harvesting wood questions
Reply #22 - May 19th, 2016 at 7:09pm
 
The feather figure in a crotch is at the pith, so orient your bowl so the bottom is closest to the pith (although that should have been removed from each blank) and the rim faces the bark.  Probably almost all of use turned a crotch bowl once with the rim facing the center of the log and all the crotch figure became shavings.

More than once I've read that osage orange turns from orange to brown with time, and that dry osage orange is about as hard as concrete.

Bruce Hoadley's book "Understanding Wood" is a great reference even for turners, not just furniture makers.  In it he explains why branch wood is not used for lumber - another name for it is reaction wood.  I would expect bowls from branch wood to warp more than those from the trunk of the tree.
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John Cepko
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Re: harvesting wood questions
Reply #23 - May 19th, 2016 at 7:49pm
 
Chris Gunsolley wrote on May 19th, 2016 at 10:53am:
John Cepko wrote on Jan 20th, 2016 at 1:17am:
I love tree crotches.
The 'V' usually is an interesting piece, and you get two per crotch.
Anything that a firewood splitter cant/'won't tackle is good for me.
I like trunks better than branch wood, unless the branch is huge.
Bradford Pear is brittle because the bark grows deep into the crotch, creating a weak place for the branch to break off at the slightest stress. For that reason BP crotches are out, they will fly apart on the lathe. Don't ask me how I know... But, it turns like butter, with long curlies, so get all the solid wood from that tree you can get.



John,

I know this may be tricky to describe, but how do you orient the bowls in the trunk to get two bowls out of the crotch, both exploiting the interesting grain patterns within the crotch?

For instance, say the crotch is standing vertically--approximately as one would naturally grow most of the time--and we're facing the "V" straight on... After cutting the branches off, in cutting the wood with your chainsaw to make blanks, would you cut the wood through the center, the way that you normally would to remove the pith in a cross-grain cut in a log without a crotch? So, where the branches intersect and mend into one piece of wood, one bowl would come from the crotch at the side where one branch was, and another would come from the side where the other branch was? To clarify, if the tree were still standing and we were to draw the bowls on the crotch in the tree, the bowls would be sideways, perpendicular to the ground but as high as possible on that crotch? Basically, one bowl would be on the left half, the other on the right half?

If that doesn't sound quite right, would you please attempt to describe how you would cut your blanks from the crotch to take full advantage of the grain patterns?

Please bear with me. This is tricky to describe and I'm sure to answer. But thank you.



I do mine as the others above me described.
If the crotch is a simple Y , I line up the piths of both branches of the Y, wnd cut a line on the outside bark of each branch.
Then I go to the trunk end of the Y, and try to make a line on the same plane as the first. This might/will involve orienting the log, and propping it up so as to be able to get a good line... Imagine the Y on its side.
I like to cut down the side of the log, and right through the center of both branches. I cut down the side to avoid cutting pure end grain.
The first couple can be tricky, but then it gets easier to get the best blank from a log.
Now, if you have 3 or more branches coming from a node, take your pick.
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« Last Edit: May 19th, 2016 at 7:50pm by John Cepko »  
 
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Re: harvesting wood questions
Reply #24 - May 20th, 2016 at 12:38pm
 
Chris, I've got to try splitting the V. Should give a whole different grain pattern.  Make the split the bottom of the bowl.

Glenn J.
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Chris Gunsolley
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Re: harvesting wood questions
Reply #25 - May 20th, 2016 at 4:37pm
 
Glenn Jacobs wrote on May 20th, 2016 at 12:38pm:
Chris, I've got to try splitting the V. Should give a whole different grain pattern.  Make the split the bottom of the bowl.

Glenn J.


So, by this, you would get one bowl from the side where one branch was, and another from where the other branch was, correct?

As if splitting the Y exactly in half, then the bowl bottoms would be toward the pith? (On the part where the base of the "V" meets...)
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« Last Edit: May 20th, 2016 at 4:38pm by Chris Gunsolley »  
 
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Re: harvesting wood questions
Reply #26 - May 20th, 2016 at 6:46pm
 
Chris

After chainsawing a Y fork, I have two Y shaped pieces - I have no idea what is meant by "splitting the Y".
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Chris Gunsolley
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Re: harvesting wood questions
Reply #27 - May 20th, 2016 at 6:51pm
 
Don Stephan wrote on May 20th, 2016 at 6:46pm:
Chris

After chainsawing a Y fork, I have two Y shaped pieces - I have no idea what is meant by "splitting the Y".


OK, I get it. That's consistent with the picture Mark provided. Thanks.
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Re: harvesting wood questions
Reply #28 - May 24th, 2016 at 12:14pm
 
I normally cut so I have 2 Y pieces. The idea of cutting down the V is out of my thinking box that I've got to try it to see what the grain pattern looks like.

Glenn j.
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Chris Gunsolley
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Re: harvesting wood questions
Reply #29 - May 26th, 2016 at 10:04am
 
Glenn Jacobs wrote on May 24th, 2016 at 12:14pm:
I normally cut so I have 2 Y pieces. The idea of cutting down the V is out of my thinking box that I've got to try it to see what the grain pattern looks like.

Glenn j.


You know, what might be interesting about that is that as you work down the V, on each side you should see both a directional and diameter shift in the growth rings of each half. This might produce an interesting grain pattern with an entirely different theme than would the other (more common) method that duplicates (as opposed to splits) the V.

The theme of the other method is a combination of multiple sets of growth rings into the bowl, but when you split the V in half (as opposed to duplicating it) as we are considering, generally that directional shift in the growth rings should produce features such as drastic changes in the space between the lines in the grain and have an entirely different transitional phase affect. 
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« Last Edit: May 26th, 2016 at 10:07am by Chris Gunsolley »  
 
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