Turning Archive 2004
George@Colonel's Workshop-Havertown PA
>Good Afternoon Friends,
Fourteen months ago my #2 daughter found a cherry tree branch poking through a wall in her new house expansion. I forget the name of the hurricane. I got some of the branch for bowl turning. The latest sections of branch were removed from their firewood pile just a couple weeks ago, and I went to work with my chain saw and made a few blanks. I got several pieces with a great deal of spalting. I never worked spalted wood before, so I have some questions and observations: Is it common for the wood to be extremely punky? The bowls I turned were on the soft side, and the surfaces had the texture of a washcloth. I tried sanding on and off the lathe, and it won't get smooth. I figured I have to firm-up the surfaces before using the fine grit paper. The wood was also pretty dry even though the logs had a diameter of about 9 inches. The logs were much lighter to lift, so I guess they lost a lot of water sitting in Lizzy's back yard. I am surprised that the color is so pale in comparison to the other bowls turned earlier this year and kept in paper bags. These spalted bowls are white, like cherry sapwood. However, they were from the interior of the branch. I don't like the color after an application of tung oil and naptha. Earlier bowls were very dramatic in character, warmth and color from the get-go, and are darkening/reddining as they get older. The spalted stuff after the tung oil has not popped and darkened dramatically, but looks more like a green suited corpse who died of nausia. I sure would appreciate your comments. Where should I go from here? I have about 6 more blanks cut and not worked.