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Thread: Purple Heart

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Geneseo, Illinois
    Posts
    61

    Purple Heart

    1st time I have worked with it. After sawing it turned brown. Is there
    something I need to do to make it, or help It turn purple again???

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    falcon heights, minnesota
    Posts
    5,609
    it sounds like you burned the edges that you cut. purpleheart is very hard and dense. needs a sharp blade. sanding the edges should take the burned stuff off. one thing, when sanding, i found out about this when turning a pen, is that it will probably turn a whitish purple. that's ok, just leave it in a sunny area, turning every now and then, and it will darken up nicely.
    benedictione omnes bene

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Bradford, Vermont
    Posts
    425
    Les, purpleheart is a funny wood. I've seen blazing purple pieces turn brown on any sort of exposure to air or UV, and I've seen brown pieces turn purple on exposure. It's hit-and-miss which way it'll go. If yours is turning brown, that appears to be how that one will go. I've got some in my shop that's been royal purple for about five years now, with no finish. I've had some, though, that turned the color of walnut inside two weeks.
    -- Tim --

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Reno, Nv
    Posts
    3,632
    If I may Les, Purpleheart is kinda funny. It needs to oxidize for a bit before it "purples" up. When I do peppermills from it, I finish turning and most sanding then stand it on a table in the middle of the yard, geographical locations not withstanding. 4-6 hours and Shazam!!! it's purple.
    Good luck!
    Your Respiratory Therapist wears Combat boots

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Geneseo, Illinois
    Posts
    61
    Jim
    It was deep purple when I cut it, and I didn't burn it, so I guess I will set it
    in the sun, and see what happens

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Reno, Nv
    Posts
    3,632
    Exactly..the outside has had the chance to oxidize. Once you cut it, turn it, shave it, plane it...you get the idea, the fresh surface needs to oxidize again. I don't remember if it's an organic or mechanical reaction, but it is a reaction.
    Your Respiratory Therapist wears Combat boots

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Geneseo, Illinois
    Posts
    61
    Jim
    Placed in the sun yesterday, fliped it a few times, and I can start to see a small
    change already. I should hold off with the finish till the right color comes back I
    Guess

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    North West Indiana
    Posts
    6,098
    On the lathe when turning pens (the only exposure I have had to Purple heart) when friction finishing if it isn't purple, I use brown/rough paper towels and get it HOT. It turns the deepest purple. Then with around four coats of clear/white Hut's friction finish, the color has stayed with the pens I have kept for the past three years.
    Jon

    God and family, the rest is icing on the cake. I'm so far behind, I think I'm in first place!

    Host of the 2015 FAMILY WOODWORKING GATHERING

  9. #9
    Now if we could only do that with trunks and hair forks!
    Somehow though I don't think they would particularly care to be put on the lathe
    Dragon's Paradox - ** working on updates ** Custom and One Of A Kind Heirloom Quality Hand Crafted Jewelry & Gifts

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    North West Indiana
    Posts
    6,098
    Yeah, but I wonder if it is a heat thing and a little warming in a microwave would do the trick for you KaLea?? (for the hair thingys, don't get in the microwave yourself! )
    Jon

    God and family, the rest is icing on the cake. I'm so far behind, I think I'm in first place!

    Host of the 2015 FAMILY WOODWORKING GATHERING

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