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Thread: Is a root ball turnable?

  1. #1
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    Is a root ball turnable?

    I helped my brother pull some shrubs from my parents home this weekend. These had been planted about 40 years ago. When we got them broke loose the color of the base was fantastic. Is this usable? I brought two of them home with me and hosed off the dirt. Each base is about 6-7 inches across and about 8-10 inches tall. do they need to be sealed? or can I turn them now???

    Thanks,
    Tom
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Root ball 1.jpg   Root ball 2.jpg  
    It's not what you achieve in life...It's what you overcome!

  2. #2
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    Me not being a turner can even answer this one....YES there have been many awesome root ball turnings shown here. I am sure Vaughn and others will jump in and show you examples

  3. #3

    Yup

    I'm a novice turner so I can only give you my limited advice.

    "Grip it and rip it"

    With color like that I'd try even if the results were horrible.

  4. #4
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    Nope. Can't be done.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    They are a challenge for sure, but the results can be pretty cool.

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    Sharp tools, light cuts, safety gear, and caution are you need. I also like to pressure wash the roots before I get into them with the chainsaw or gouges. You'll still likely hit some rocks or other hard stuff, but the more you can wash away, the better.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  5. #5
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    Vaughn, thank you for that. Your finished product is amazing! Is it suggested that it dry out first?
    It's not what you achieve in life...It's what you overcome!

  6. #6
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    bethel springs TN, but was born and raised in north east PA
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    Tom i agree with Vaughn can't be done. Send them down here and i'll throw them away for you.
    This is the only one i've done so far and it was bradford pear.
    Steve
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 024 [800x600].JPG  

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Baugues View Post
    Vaughn, thank you for that. Your finished product is amazing! Is it suggested that it dry out first?
    Tom, the ones I've done so far have been somewhat wet when first turned, so I roughed/dried/re-turned them about the same as I would any other wet wood. I've got another big myoporum root in my woodpile that was cut three or four years ago, so I'm guessing it's pretty dry by now. As soon as I work up the motivation (and courage) to turn it, I'll find out if dry is better than wet.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  8. #8
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    Stephen, that piece is stunning to say the least. I can only dream.
    It's not what you achieve in life...It's what you overcome!

  9. #9
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    Tom I have turned a couple that were green. One thing you have to watch for are impediments such as rocks when turning. The ones I did had a couple imbedded in them.
    Bernie W.

    Retirement: Thats when you return from work one day
    and say, Hi, Honey, Im home forever.

    To succeed in life, you need three things: a wishbone, a backbone and a funnybone.

  10. #10
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    I decided to put the smaller of the two on the lathe tonight to see what would happen. The wood inside is really wild. At first I just turned it down to see what it looked like then it cracked off a large chunk in the center so after turning it down this is what I'm left with. Now I have no idea where to go with this. It looks like a goblet but the base would not be large enough to support it. So now I'm thinking of using the "large end" for one project and use the "stem" for something else???? I just don't know what???? Anyone want to give me any ideas?????

    Thanks,
    Tom
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 07 resized.jpg  
    It's not what you achieve in life...It's what you overcome!

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