More Bowls

A friend at work brought me the trunk of a small oak the other day.  He says it is Water Oak but it doesn’t look like the other Water Oak I have.  Not sure exactly what it is at this point.  The log is about 7ft long and 7.5″ in diameter at the widest. I bucked it into smaller billets with my chainsaw.  It’s a Husqvarna 357XP if you’re curious and is a great saw.  After that I start a cut into the ends of each piece.


Then comes the splitting wedges.  The cuts in the wood give me a place to set the wedges so that all the force goes into splitting the wood instead of driving the wedge into the wood.  It does a good job and making quick work of the billets.


Sometimes I attempt to cut the pith out and will make two cuts into the end of the pieces.  If I do this, I need two wedges on the second cut or it’ll split the thin center piece.


Here’s most of the log split into pieces.  There are four other pieces not pictured that I split yesterday.


I can’t get around to all of the pieces quick enough.  So, I’m attempting to “store” some of the pieces in paper bags in hopes that they’ll slowly dry without cracking.  I’ve found paper bags or wrapping in newspaper works well for drying the wood.


The next step is to cut the halves into pieces that approximate a cylinder.  To do this I made use of my new bandsaw.  It works well for the job though I wish I could get some more tension on the blade.   It still bows a little bit.  Perhaps a tension spring upgrade is in its future.


The piece then goes on the lathe using a screw center.  It’s a threaded piece that you can chuck into the lathe and then screw into a hole in the wood piece.  Here’s it on the lathe.  Before I can start turning it though I have to pull up the tailstock so it doesn’t come off


Here’s the outer surface of the bowl roughed out.  I’ve put a tenon on the end of it so I can flip it over and hold it with the chuck.   Once it is securely held, I can start working on removing material from the inside of the bowl.


I managed to get six bowls roughed out (actually my wife roughed out one of them) that are about 7″ in diameter.  Here are some of them.  These rough bowls are then placed in bags for a couple of months until I decide they’re dry.  Monitoring their weight is a good way to determine when they’re dry.  I use the process of writing the date on the bag and then forgetting about thrm for a long time.  After that they’re dry.


Quite a bit of material was removed!  The pile looks flatter in the picture.


I also finish turned a natural edge bowl I’d roughed out a while back out of Magnolia. Here it is out of the sack I was drying it in before turning.


Here’s the outer surface after finish turning.


Here’s a picture of the inside of the bowl with some Boiled Linseed Oil on it.  Once again, I got a lot of tear out with this bowl.  Shear scraping worked on the inside pretty well but up on the wings I wasn’t able to keep the tool steady enough.  It looks like I’m going to have to start looking into soaking troublesome bowels before finish turning them. 


I’ll put a couple more layers of BLO on it and then cut the tenon off.  Maybe I’ll sit it some place up high where you can only see the outside of it.

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