Turning Archive 2004

Drying Sycamore - any tips?

David Eaves
>Hi there,
I gained a nice Sycamore log today (same family as Maple and similar wood if you don't have many in the US)

I'm planning on attacking it with the chainsaw tomorrow. It's recently felled. I should be able to get a minimum of two 11" ish bowl blanks out of it. I will probably rough turn them to season.

My question is this, in my book on seasoning wood it says that Sycamore should be allowed to dry on the surface quickly (usually by endracking for planks) to keep the whiteness of the wood, and avoid staining. I'm worried though if I do this especially with all the end grain exposed I could lose them due to cracks.

Does anyone have any tips on how to balance these two constraints. At the moment I figure when I have roughed them I will let the surface dry for a few days then put them in paper bags to slow the water loss down. At this stage I might coat them with something too.

My other option would to be too dry them as planks. However I fear I will get shakes creeping up the boards then.

Any advice is much appreciated

For info
A word on my climate. UK so always damp :o) They will be in a building which is dry but not that dry I would estimate the equilibrium moisture content out there to be 25% ish.

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