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Thread: Spalted Maple & Fiddleback Maple pieces..

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Frisco TX

    Spalted Maple & Fiddleback Maple pieces..

    Here is crazy spalted/stained piece of silver maple. This is a local maple tree cut down and it spalted in my garage in Tx. I really wanted to do something special with this piece. My daughter was goading me to dye it pink or purple. In the end, I just went with a utilitarian bowl as nothing else seemed to fit. Finished with Mahoney's Walnut oil which I have not used in a long while. It says to cure it under UV lighting so I left it in the chuck and put it in my carving vice. This has 2 coats...destined for 3-4 more. Then after a couple of weeks, I will buff it out.

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    Here is a piece of fiddleback maple that I mounted on my vacuum chuck to try it out. Lessons learned: 1) chuck worked great 2) sanding sealer is old or I forgot to stir it well 3) dyes do not have to be applied on a vacuum chuck. They can be applied off lathe dried then remounted for lathe sanding. The specks you see in the bowl bottom (1st pic) are the dye being pulled through by the vacuum but they were blocked by the sealer so they never made it all the way thru. There is really only one way to solve this which would require removing the sanding sealer and dyeing the inside, too. Not worth my time. My daughter loved this piece in her school colors.

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    The Maple family of woods are a wonderful canvas for turning. It has only one drawback and that is the end grain marks. Fresh sharp tools and sand paper are my weapons.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Reno, Nv
    Amazing Chip!!! But how big are they? JMHO, but I think the foot on the silver maple is a little heavy I like the dye job on the fiddleback...that stuff is so hard to find!!
    Your Respiratory Therapist wears Combat boots

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Frisco TX
    The spalted one is 8w x 4h...The fiddleback is 7.5w x 2.25h. I stumbled into a Rockler when they had a huge box of fiddleback maple. Most folks were buying based on thickness and size. I bought based on grade. This purple was AAA as are all the other ones in the pic. The store employees raided all the AAAA pieces. The big platter pieces were originally intended for the collection plates I did but I did find enough of them fast enough. Too bad all those folks with 10 and 12 inch lathes didn't want the larger pieces. So (shamelessly) I am stuck with 4 14x3 and 2 13x3 pieces. I guess I will suffer.

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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    bethel springs TN, but was born and raised in north east PA
    Chip good looking bowls and some eally cool wood. Them blanks ain't to shabby ether.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    ABQ NM
    Nicely done, Chip. I really like that purple on fiddleback. I've still got a couple of small blanks of the Rockler fiddleback myself. I wish they would have had some larger ones when I bought mine.

    And I see you learned the "don't apply dye under a vacuum" lesson. I've had some woods (ash, notably) that is so porous that the dye will bleed through even if it's not in the vacuum chuck. This is especially true on thin-walled pieces.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Goodland, Kansas
    Really nice bowls and wood. Color is nice.
    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.

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