Hey guys, thought I'd start out by at least introducing myself. Name's Wes and I just signed up here not too long ago. I've been reading a lot of your posts and I'd like to say that I find what you guys all do here is very informative and much appreciated! Since I was a kid I've been working with wood in some way or another, whether it be building bike ramps or tree forts, and I'm now a 3rd year apprentice in carpentry. Working with wood in any way or shape has always sparked my interest, especially with turning. I recently received a lathe for my birthday. I've already turned one bowl on it although it was a bit of a journey. Back in high school a few years ago I played around on the lathe for a bit, but it was making things like baseball bats. Turning these bowls seems like a whole new world once you get to the inside. I have picked up a book to learn some techniques on bowl turning but I probably should have bought it and read through it before I started but I think I handle it fairly. A question I have for you guys is about drying the wood and finishing it...
During the fall, my brother in law and I cut down a very large Elm tree in our back yard. Needless to say I have lots of elm to turn into bowls. I would really like to get a nice set of bowls and plates going for use. Me, being completely oblivious to properly drying wood, started one bowl and it seemed to be a little difficult to cut because of how wet it was, so I took it inside at the end of the day and placed it in front of the register over night. Huge mistake! So, after watching some youtube videos and getting my gouges properly sharpened, I started another bowl and finished it last night. It turned out alright and I sanded it down to about 800 grit. My question would be how do I properly let this bowl dry out so it does not crack? I also picked up some Salad Bowl Finish to apply to the bowl once it dries. What would be an appropriate amount of time before I can apply that? I'm pretty new to this whole thing as far as turning "green" wood compared to dried wood. Any help you guys could offer would be greatly appreciated and I thank you in advance.
Also, I went to a local woodcraft store to pick up a few goodies for my new toy and decided to grab a blank piece about 5"x6" of Bloodwood. From what I've read about it, it is apparently a pretty dense wood. Does anyone have any experience with it? I thought it looked pretty neat with it's deep red color. I am hoping to start something on it tomorrow and I'm curious if it's going to be a difficult wood to turn.
Any advice is much appreciated! Thanks again guys!