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CHJ

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Starting to tidy up some of the timber that is collecting around here.
Not having a moisture meter I have no idea of the moisture content.


This piece of Ash for instance has been felled a couple of years and had 120mm cracks in end due to rapid drying.

Having split it.

Removed most of the bark and trued up the split face.

What do I do for best now:
A: Store as is.
B: Coat it to reduce drying speed.
C: Reduce it further to near blank sizes. and do the same.
D: Turn it green and leave it to further dry out.


The Yew is dry, just full of cracks that may preclude its use for turning, the Small piece of Chestnut is 'wet' (felled this year).
 

jasonB

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I would turn it green, but leave the wall thickness 18-25mm. Once rough turned place in a sealed plastic bag and keep in a warmish room. Open the bag each day and turn inside out, there should be moisture condensating on the inside of the bag. Once you get no more condensation let it stand for another 4-6 weeks then finish turn.

The reason for leaving the wall thick is to allow for retrueing once dry as the wood will warp but hopefully not split.

Jason
 

CHJ

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jasonB":y8hwdbff said:
I would turn it green, but leave the wall thickness 18-25mm. Once rough turned place in a sealed plastic bag and keep in a warmish room. Open the bag each day and turn inside out, there should be moisture condensating on the inside of the bag. Once you get no more condensation let it stand for another 4-6 weeks then finish turn.

The reason for leaving the wall thick is to allow for retrueing once dry as the wood will warp but hopefully not split.

Jason
Thank you Jason I will try the plastic bag idea to control the drying process, no problem with warm storage space, it certainly gives me more room for optimism that it will not split. More sawing tomorrow it seems.
 

trevtheturner

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The best advice I can give, Chas, is to seal end grain just as soon as possible after wood has been cut, be it into logs or turning blanks.

If you look at a freshly cut log, even a few hours after cutting, you will often see the splits appearing in the end grain. This is caused by the end grain being able to dry quickly, as opposed to the 'body' of the wood which may take years. The longer the end grain is left unsealed, the more the splits will develop, perhaps even rendering the wood unuseable(your yew?). Similarly any freshly cut turning blanks should be sealed a.s.a.p.

The traditional method is to use hot wax, as with the blanks you buy from a supplier. However, there are other methods. A bit of old emulsion or gloss paint from that long forgotten, left over tin at the back of the shed will have the same effect. I brush on PVA adhesive, undiluted, as on my spalted beech turning blanks. All methods have the effect of greatly reducing the rate of drying of the end grain, against the rest of the wood, thereby eliminating or reducing the tendency to split. But only seal the end grain, and the rims of turning blanks. Don't seal the faces as these need to be left exposed to dry.

With the ash pieces in your picture, if you are not about to turn them immediately, they would benefit from having the split ends trimmed off and the newly exposed end grain sealed. A good, thick sealing coat should prevent any further splitting until you are ready to use them.

Cheers,

Trev.
 

CHJ

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trevtheturner":nn3iks44 said:
. major snip..
With the ash pieces in your picture, if you are not about to turn them immediately, they would benefit from having the split ends trimmed off and the newly exposed end grain sealed. A good, thick sealing coat should prevent any further splitting until you are ready to use them.

Cheers,

Trev.
Thanks Trevor I have enough pieces lying around now to try standard sealing and the 'wet turn' methods. I have been promised some beech (fallen tree on farm) which will come freshly chain sawn into blocks so that I can get it coated asap.

I am intrigued by the partial 'wet turn', method though, just wondered what failure (splitting) rate to expect.

Surfing the web I find that some people immerse the wet wood in detergent/water mix as cut and keep it immersed until turned to avoid end splits, then dry it on the rack if it is part turned or seal and apply finish to a 'finished' article to slow down the remaining water loss.
I can see a lot of rust associated with that method!
 

Philly

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Chas
I don't turn as much as I used too so when I get free logs dumped on me I just cut them vertically it half-stops most of the splitting and then I can play with them at my leisure.
Hope this helps
Philly :D
 

jasonB

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Chas, I get very few failures due to cracks/splits usually only if I try and accelerate the process by storing the bags too close to a radiator.

I have had to alter the design of a few pieces as the amount of shrinkage across the grain can be more than the wall thickness. This apple one now measures 295x270, the pencil line indicates a true circle.


But they can also curve away from the center line of the tree. Same apple blank, if it were deeper it would make a good hat :D


The only other problem is that you can get a bit of fungal growth as the moist enviroment encourages it, OK for spalted items but timbers like sycamore can turn grey.

Jason
 
A

Anonymous

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Just taking a break from decorating... only 2 rooms to go.... :roll:

Ray, thanks for the 'English' equivalent of denatured alcohol

Chas... maybe it's time to get into miniatures, it'd certainly make best use of your Yew 8)

Decorating can be fun... I'm also refurbing the 'shop' whilst waiting for paint to dry :p
 

CHJ

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oldsoke":15b356dv said:
..snip..
Chas... maybe it's time to get into miniatures, it'd certainly make best use of your Yew 8)
It would certainly make it go a lot further and reduce the potential for total chippings conversion.

Note to Self:
Xmas List
Item 1--Set of smaller gauge turning tools.
2-- some fancy centers like what Trevor has. ----5--Collet jaws -6---9--
 

CHJ

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Jason noted not many splits, bet you can't make a repeat order of that one. :lol:
 

CHJ

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Philly":wkzka3ou said:
Chas
I don't turn as much as I used too so when I get free logs dumped on me I just cut them vertically it half-stops most of the splitting and then I can play with them at my leisure.
Hope this helps
Philly :D
My thoughts centred around that premise Philly when I split the Ash, thought it might relieve some of the stress whilst I sought advice.
 

CHJ

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Argee":164r9kg8 said:
Have you read this article? For all intents and purposes, read "methylated spirits" for "De-natured alcohol."

Ray.
No I had not seen that Ray It sounds more realistic than the washing up liquid, might try it with some of the small branches that get lopped off the local trees. Got to find something else associated with turning to slow the process down before we have to think about ordering a box van to deliver all the Xmas/Birthday/Anniversary presents that are rapidly gathering.
 
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