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sue denim

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Hello

Most of my turning has been with seasoned dry hardwoods. I have never turned poplar and have been offered a large quantity from mature trees.

How does it turn either green or dry and is it a particularly attractive wood or not ?

I know itisn't a very good fire wood despite the fact they make matches out of it.

Regards

'Sue'
 

Paul Hannaby

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Poplar is often sold under the name tulipwood. It's very good for turning but not particularly interesting to look at.
I think I read somewhere it is used by carvers for rocking horses.
 

marcros

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Tulipwood (Liriodendron tulipifera) is a different species I think.

I assume that you have been offered a large quantity because it is from local trees being felled, in which case it would not be Liriodendron tulipifera. More likely to be Populus nigra.

Unfortunately, none of this answers your questions, sorry.
 

Jonzjob

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These are the leaves and flowers on our tulip trees along the Canal du Midi. The flowers are about 3 1/2 to 4" high and beautiful!



I have some lumps of one that had to be felled a few years back and it is quite interesting. Notice that the leaves have 4 lobes. I haven't seen that anywhere else before.
 

nev

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i felled a very large grey poplar* in my garden last year, and its great for green practice, huge ribbons right across the workshop, but it seriously splits and warps as its drying and its not that exciting or interesting to look at. so i would say if its free and youve got somewhere to dry and season it slowly and properly, or if you just want to make ribbons while its wet, grab some.:)
* at least thats what the consensus is. originally we thought it was a beech, but alas no :(
 

Bodrighy

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I have a load of this from a furniture maker. If you are lucky you will get pieces with green streaks in it. It is a strong wood and suitable for pretty much anything and is an ideal all purpose wood in my experience. It can be a bit boring as far as figuring etc is concerned but if you want to have highly decorative shapes and / or texturing it is ideal.

Pete
 

nodnostik

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Hi All as a Carved Rocking Horse maker I can confirm that tulip wood is generally used for their manufacture. It is not cheap The last load I bought to make a Large horse cost me just over £400. and that I consider to be a good price. It very often has green streaks in it, but in my opinion not the best of woods for turning. It carves very well though.
Don
 

nev

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nodnostik":2z78tv0r said:
Hi All as a Carved Rocking Horse maker I can confirm that tulip wood is generally used for their manufacture. It is not cheap The last load I bought to make a Large horse cost me just over £400. and that I consider to be a good price. It very often has green streaks in it, but in my opinion not the best of woods for turning. It carves very well though.
Don
:shock: and i thought twenty quid on a bowl blank was extravagant :shock:
 

Bodrighy

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nodnostik":3bgb2nk1 said:
but in my opinion not the best of woods for turning. Not the best but I have found it to be stable, easily turned to a good finish and ideal if texturing etc is required. Use sharp tools though.

Pete
Don
 

marcros

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nodnostik":xr912hf0 said:
Hi All as a Carved Rocking Horse maker I can confirm that tulip wood is generally used for their manufacture. It is not cheap The last load I bought to make a Large horse cost me just over £400. and that I consider to be a good price. It very often has green streaks in it, but in my opinion not the best of woods for turning. It carves very well though.
Don
would love to see a WIP of a rocking horse
 

gregmcateer

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Sue,
I just got, quite literally, a shed load of it - and have managed to destroy 2 green 'hollow forms' for a challenge - though it was free and as, I think it was Nev said, the ribbons of wet shavings are damn good fun all over the workshop!
Apparently they make clogs from it, so I assume it will be a bit 'boring', (the grain, not the clogs or the Dutch!).
Good luck and let us see the results
Greg
 

dickm

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Poplar also used to be used for lorry and trailer beds; it seems to respond well to dings and other bashes without splintering. So at some point, it was probably quite cheap. Certainly can grow fast - a colleague planted some as part of an agroforestry investigation back in the early 80s, and felled some decent butts last year.
 

marcros

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Thanks Paul- you make it look easy!

Brilliant work.
 

jurriaan

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The poplar that grows over here, mostly for the paper industry, grows very fast (mature trees in 30 years), populus tremula - mostly hybrids.

The trees give an interesting white/brown contrast when just felled, but this color soon fades on drying.
The wood itself hasn't got an interesting figure, is soft and stringy and often contains sand or stuff like it, which will dull your chisel in no time.

All in all, it's an interesting experience, and if it's free, I'd take some but it's certainly not something I actively search for....
 

Bodrighy

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jurriaan":py70187g said:
The poplar that grows over here, mostly for the paper industry, grows very fast (mature trees in 30 years), populus tremula - mostly hybrids.

The trees give an interesting white/brown contrast when just felled, but this color soon fades on drying.
The wood itself hasn't got an interesting figure, is soft and stringy and often contains sand or stuff like it, which will dull your chisel in no time.

All in all, it's an interesting experience, and if it's free, I'd take some but it's certainly not something I actively search for....

I get a lot of it from the up market furniture industry where it is extensively used for the carcases of very expensive pieces. It seems that it must be a different wood to the one that you have encountered lol. I agree that it is not the the most exciting wood to look at but as far as being "soft and stringy and often contains sand or stuff like it, which will dull your chisel in no time" I have never encountered this.

Pete
 
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