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Cracked blank (Read 178 times)
 
Tom Walker
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Jet 1236 Clone
Cracked blank
Jul 11th, 2018 at 5:41pm
 
The newest of the newbies first question.  I bought some 6 inch bowl blanks an they arrived fully waxed.  Scraped the wax off one, mounted the blank and started rounding it out.  Just got the outside roughed and got called away and left the blank in the chuck.  Did not get back to it for about 40 hours.  I found a cracked hunk of wood, one clear through the center and several others.  Did not turn the lathe on, just set the wood aside.  Live in the desert but the lathe is in a A/C shop.  Humidity here is LOW.   Need advice please .
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Ralph Fahringer
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Re: Cracked blank
Reply #1 - Jul 11th, 2018 at 6:30pm
 
When you get blanks fully waxed, they are still wet/green.

That piece probably should have gone onto a shelf for a few (many) months.

Next time you go online for blanks, try to find ones that have been kiln  dried.

I'm pretty sure we all have done this when we first started out! Smiley

Another trick... whenever you go away from the lathe, take a plasticbag and cover the piece with it. I wrap the hndles around the back side of the chuck. You don't need to tie it off, just isolate the wood from the dry air. It will still lose moisture but waaaay slower.

40 hours might be pushing this trick tho.

Seriously, what's more important than turning???!!! Shocked Shocked
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John Cepko
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Re: Cracked blank
Reply #2 - Jul 14th, 2018 at 7:05pm
 
A few wraps of Saran, cling type of plastic wrap works well too.
Or, just go ahead and coat the outside with some Anchorseal, or cheap paint if you know you are going to be away from the turning for a while(days).
Anything to slow, and even out the water loss.
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Don Stephan
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Re: Cracked blank
Reply #3 - Yesterday at 2:22pm
 
Wonder how many people buying and turning waxed blanks use a reliable moisture meter on them to track moisture loss.

Wonder also how many people make once turned bowls from purchased wax blanks and how many make twice turned bowls from them.
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Ralph Fahringer
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Re: Cracked blank
Reply #4 - Yesterday at 4:02pm
 
Wonder how many people even know how long it takes a 3" thick blank that is wax coated and green to be dry enough to turn without cracking.  I have no idea myself.

I'm thinking about 2 or 3 years but anyone else have a guess? Shocked
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Ed Weber
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Re: Cracked blank
Reply #5 - Today at 9:15am
 
Ralph Fahringer wrote Yesterday at 4:02pm:
Wonder how many people even know how long it takes a 3" thick blank that is wax coated and green to be dry enough to turn without cracking.  I have no idea myself.


We had a guy a while back doing a science paper/project on drying times and methods, maybe he could help.
Honestly, there is no real answer.
All wood is different, I have some wax sealed blanks that are several years old and they still take care when turning. Don't remove too much material too quickly.
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Ralph Fahringer
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Re: Cracked blank
Reply #6 - Today at 9:33am
 
I think it is why I love burls so much!

The grain swirls around so much, there is no distinct grain pattern for a crack to start.
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