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Finials? (Read 226 times)
 
Robert Evans
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Finials?
Oct 11th, 2020 at 3:02pm
 
I'm in the process of making some Christmas ornaments and it's time to make the finials.  I have some bradford pear that was cut last October and has been in the shop ever since.  I cut the limb on the bandsaw into 1" square pieces about 5" long.  After checking with the moisture meter, this wood is still pretty green.  16-20% moisture.  Can I use it to turn my finials or do they need to sit until next Christmas?
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Don Stephan
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Re: Finials?
Reply #1 - Oct 11th, 2020 at 5:15pm
 
If the wood has been inside for a year, was it end coated last October and when was it cut into 1" square pieces 5" long?  If the ends were uncoated and the wood stored outside I would not expect it still to read 16-20% moisture.

Certainly it can be turned, but any tenon will shrink somewhat to an oval shape as it dries to about 10% and might weaken a glue joint.  And it might not hold some finishes till it loses more moisture.
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Ed Weber
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Re: Finials?
Reply #2 - Oct 11th, 2020 at 5:23pm
 
Don Stephan wrote on Oct 11th, 2020 at 5:15pm:
Certainly it can be turned, but any tenon will shrink somewhat to an oval shape as it dries to about 10% and might weaken a glue joint.  And it might not hold some finishes till it loses more moisture.


It can check, if not crack if the moisture change is too abrupt. Once the wax is gone and you remove material, the rapid change can be bad.
You could rough turn them round and put them in a bag with some shavings, 1" in thickness usually doesn't take that long to dry, especially since you're at 16-20 already.
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Robert Evans
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Re: Finials?
Reply #3 - Oct 11th, 2020 at 7:31pm
 
The ends were painted with Anchor Seal back in October.  The piece is about 4" in diameter.  I cut the 1" square pieces on the bandsaw, making sure the pith was not used. 

I may go ahead and turn them and then let them dry for a couple of weeks before gluing and finishing.  I'm still learning.
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Don R Davis
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Re: Finials?
Reply #4 - Oct 11th, 2020 at 7:34pm
 
I have read recently that people are drying their wood in the micro-wave. That is about all I know except they are drying it for short periods of time.
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Don Stephan
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Re: Finials?
Reply #5 - Oct 11th, 2020 at 7:40pm
 
Having read similar reports, I decided to try heating a small green black walnut bowl so that I could bend the sides into exaggerated warping.  Don't remember how long I ran my low power microwave but when I smelled smoke I pulled the wood from the microwave and the middle was glowing red.  Fortunately the smoke did not trigger the alarm in the other room, but the utility room and microwave smelled acrid for months.

If you decide to try heating in a microwave (NOT SWMBO'S KITCHEN APPLIANCE) start with perhaps 15 seconds and gradually increase in small increments to find the proper time length.
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Robert Evans
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Re: Finials?
Reply #6 - Oct 11th, 2020 at 8:05pm
 
After I got caught drying 38 spl. cases in the oven, I have been banned from using ANY kitchen appliances for my projects.   Huh
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chris lawrence
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Re: Finials?
Reply #7 - Oct 11th, 2020 at 8:45pm
 
Don Stephan wrote on Oct 11th, 2020 at 7:40pm:
Having read similar reports, I decided to try heating a small green black walnut bowl so that I could bend the sides into exaggerated warping.  Don't remember how long I ran my low power microwave but when I smelled smoke I pulled the wood from the microwave and the middle was glowing red.  Fortunately the smoke did not trigger the alarm in the other room, but the utility room and microwave smelled acrid for months.

If you decide to try heating in a microwave (NOT SWMBO'S KITCHEN APPLIANCE) start with perhaps 15 seconds and gradually increase in small increments to find the proper time length.


Yes microwaves work by exciting water molecules once all the water is gone bad things happen.
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Anthony Gomez
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Re: Finials?
Reply #8 - Oct 12th, 2020 at 12:03am
 
Bradford pear is some of the finest high quality turning wood - it is just not very colorful - the problem that I have or had with it is how much moisture when it was harvested - In  the springtime - or summer it is often so wet , any endgrain  coating will have to be reapplied several times before it takes -and even then - cracking can occur - cutting it into smaller chunks would mean I would again seal the endgrain if it is still wet - ice storms means these relatively fragile trees can often break due any icy buildup  - the moisture is reduced quite a bit during the winter - - Bradford pear is supposed to be one of the woodcarvers favorite due to its uniform tight grain
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Ed Weber
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Re: Finials?
Reply #9 - Oct 12th, 2020 at 9:13am
 
Anthony Gomez wrote on Oct 12th, 2020 at 12:03am:
Bradford pear is supposed to be one of the woodcarvers favorite due to its uniform tight gr


It also holds the fine detail very well
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Ralph Fahringer
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Re: Finials?
Reply #10 - Oct 12th, 2020 at 11:01am
 
Put your pieces in desiccant. Smiley

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Robert Evans
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Re: Finials?
Reply #11 - Oct 12th, 2020 at 7:54pm
 
I finished up the Christmas Ornaments.  The bradford pear finials were easy to turn.  Hopefully, the high moisture content won't be a problem. 
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Robert Hayward
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Re: Finials?
Reply #12 - Oct 12th, 2020 at 8:21pm
 
Robert Evans wrote on Oct 12th, 2020 at 7:54pm:
I finished up the Christmas Ornaments.  The bradford pear finials were easy to turn.  Hopefully, the high moisture content won't be a problem. 


Nice work!
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Ed Weber
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Re: Finials?
Reply #13 - Oct 13th, 2020 at 10:07am
 
Robert Evans wrote on Oct 12th, 2020 at 7:54pm:
Hopefully, the high moisture content won't be a problem. 


If anything you might get a slight bend. If that happens, tell everyone they're Dr. Seuss ornaments
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Don Stephan
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Re: Finials?
Reply #14 - Oct 13th, 2020 at 6:49pm
 
Are you saying they might "go on a bender?"
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