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Willow - Any Good?

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brianhabby

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Hi there,

I've just cut down a small willow tree and wondered if the wood is any good for turning or anything else. I have a few logs about 2 - 3 ft long and 4 - 6 inches in diameter.

Is this stuff worth usiing or should I just bin it?

regards

Brian
 

Bodrighy

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In a word no. At least most of the willow grown in this country is useless. It is so wet that it sprays while being turned and then will dry out splitting and cracking all over the place. I have yet to work out why cricket bats are straight and without splits LOL.

Pete
 

paulm

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I "rescued" a fair pile of willow logs a few years ago when a largish tree by the village pond was cut down.

A lot of it cracked and split quite quickly so a lot of wastage, but a few pieces were turned very successfully into large bowls, with nice colour and figuring surprisingly. Also quite deceptive as the bowls were left a reasonable thickness for their size and so looked like they should be quite heavy but when picked up were of course as light as a feather !

Worth a try then, but be prepared for a fair bit of wastage.

Cheers, Paul
 

andersonec

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Bodrighy":3kp7o4yl said:
In a word no. At least most of the willow grown in this country is useless. It is so wet that it sprays while being turned and then will dry out splitting and cracking all over the place. I have yet to work out why cricket bats are straight and without splits LOL.

Pete
The willow used for cricket bats is a variety called Salix Alba Caerulea, or 'cricket bat willow' it is a straight trunked tree with straight grain and is used for bats when the trunk is about 18 inches in diameter, most other types of willow, and there are many, are of no use for cricket bats.

Andy
 

brianhabby

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Well, I was visiting my sister the other week and I found a few pieces that we had put aside that she was going to give to her son-in-law when they visited because he also does turning. Each time they visited though he said he had no room in the car and so they were left tucked behind a bush in the garden (unbeknowns to me).

So I brought them home and they are currently sitting in my shed waiting to be turned into something. Plenty of spalting so we'll have to see.

regards

Brian
 

finneyb

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I have willow. It kept sprouting new growth for the first 6 months - so that's a measure of how wet it is.
When dry - 12 months - I find it good for turning long stems such as the trembleur and tall goblet; trembleur is about 18" high.

I also use it for power carving garden ornaments eg the corkscrew and flower planter
Planter was done using a chainsaw. Corkscrew using an Arbortech mini-grinder and Pro 4 woodcarver blade on an angle grinder.

Free wood always comes in for something, just may not always be turning

Brian
 

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