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Thread: what to do with crotch wood?

  1. #1
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    what to do with crotch wood?

    Now that I have a lathe on the way, I figure that I'll be able to do something with some green maple crotch pieces as pictured below. What would you guys do with these pieces?

    Attachment 12846

    Oh, ah, I do plan to practice first and learn on some less irregular shaped smaller pieces.

  2. #2
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    First you should get the ends sealed before it cracks up on you. When you get a chance to cut them up they should have some nice character in them.

  3. #3
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    Curt was only half right. First, seal the ends with Anchorseal. Then send it all to me.
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

  4. #4
    Mark, I find crotch wood great for almost any turning that can display the great "feathering" that is found inside the branch union. Bowls, platters and Hollow Forms all lend themselves to excellent results with crotch wood. Platters tend to showcase the feathering the best, IMO. Sometimes when you use this type of wood growth for bowls, you tend to remove most of the figured wood when you hollow the interior of the bowl. (Most often, the most spectacular grain is at or near the center of the log, and that gets removed when you turn the bowl interior.) Have fun with those............Maple can have some wonderful figure!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Fusco View Post
    Curt was only half right. First, seal the ends with Anchorseal. Then send it all to me.
    Dang it Frank, you beat me to it!

    Mark, Frank is doing you a favor by taking that horrible crotch wood off your hands. The grain in that stuff goes every whichaway, and it can almost make you dizzy looking at it. Wouldn't want a shop accident just because you got dizzy, now would we?

    As Kevin mentioned, you can get some pretty stuff out of that part of the tree. Here's a walnut piece I did a while back that has some of the feathering he mentioned:

    Attachment 12848

    My only advice would be to try to figure out where the center of the crotch is, and position your turned piece to take advantage of it.
    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

  6. #6
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    Mark, this is what I do with crotch wood.



    I would recommend that you turn two or three regular bowls first though!

    Seriously, there are a lot of things you can do with crotches, and this is only one of them. But it is a good idea to get your tool techniques well in hand before you start spinning pieces like this.

    Bill
    Bill Grumbine

    www.wonderfulwood.com

  7. #7
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    I agree with Bill. Do several bowls first to get used to turning, using your tools, etc. I have tried a couple like Bill's mainly just to say I did.
    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.

  8. #8
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    Thanks for the suggestions.

    I wouldn't've thought to turn other than across the cross section of the log until seeing Bill's piece - thanks!

    Regarding checking, some of the ends are already checked (the tree fell ~1 1/2 months ago - it was a multi-trip pick up, getting the lower sections for flatwork first) will sealing the ends now do any good? It will dry ok through the bark?

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