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  • tools & telephone poles


  • #2
    Re: tools & telephone poles

    Mtn,
    I bought the large Flexcut Mallet set for roughing a very large sign project last winter and I think they would be great start on your Pole Spirits. The width makes the corners a challenge for my limited stropping skills.

    You asked about the poles. I have a friend that does alot of saw mill work. He collects power poles and will cut lumber for decks and fence etc out of the treated poles. He also has some very old western red cedar poles that he has cut some beautiful boards from. I tried to carve my bald head out of a piece of cedar pole, the likeness was not very complimentary but it carved OK. So the answer is it depends on the wood the pole was cut from.
    Ah chip

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    • #3
      Re: tools & telephone poles

      The group I carve with was going to carve a couple of busts from a chunk of telephone pole we had been given. We gave up before we got it rough-sawed due to the smoke and smell from the tar or creosote they treat the poles with. It also seemed to be quite grainy with a lot of hard sap wood in it. I think you would be better off with a log...

      I am using a set of the Flexcut mallet tools right now and they seem to work fine. As this is the first time I used mallet tools I am certainly not the best source of info on that subject though!

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      • #4

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        • #5

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          • #6
            Re: tools & telephone poles

            Try using Oak its hard but carves nice and with a fresh coat of preservative each year it will out live all of us. A have a huge carving of Uncle Sam in my back yard I did with red oak. Ruffed it out with a chain saw, and worked it down with a angle grinder and than chisels. It holds detail well, but it is alot of work.
            Visit Easton, Md's Waterfowl Festival November 8th 9th and 10th.

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            • #7
              Re: tools & telephone poles

              Come on Mtn Willie, don't give up just because you got hold of some bad wood.
              Think about it, you have some really good tools, you've got the want to, now go get some different wood and get to carving!!!!
              Bad wood and junk carving tools have discouraged more than one beginning carver. Don't let it do this to you, you have the tools, so you're more than half way there.
              Go to a sawmill and see if you can get some end pieces off of a log, maybe even buy a small log. Cottonwood and sycamore carve easy and are cheap!
              I want to hear that you have begun that big project.
              Talk to us!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
              grumpy560

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              • #8

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                • #9
                  Re: tools & telephone poles

                  Glad to hear it. Good luck with the cane, keep us posted.
                  grumpy560

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                  • #10
                    Re: tools & telephone poles

                    Be carefull with logs. If you want to carve a logg you must seal the end grains of the piece and store it for a year or more before carving. Give the wood plenty of time to dry. This reduces the amount of massive cracking that will take place during carving. When you finish cutting, the thinner sections will cure or dry faster than the thick sections. Be sure to give you carving a couple good coats of sealent. If the piece is big enough and not truly dry, it will crack anyway.
                    I've had some hard luck with loggs so I switched to lamenating sveral hardwood boards to the desired thickness. This can be costly but your guarenteed total controll over the shape of the wood. Good luck

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                    • #11
                      Re: tools & telephone poles

                      I too have just begun to let out the artistic ability I believe lies within.
                      I am the possessor of two very large pine logs. Each is 3-4 feet in diameter and about 6 feet long. You mention sealing the ends---- Please tell me what to use as a sealer.
                      The wood has been aging for about two years in the open. The ends are pretty hard with no perceivable decay.
                      As a novice I would appreciate any suggestions

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                      • #12

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                        • #13
                          Re: tools & telephone poles

                          parafin wax works great for pieces up to 18' dia. Haven't had a chance to try anything bigger. Even that takes several years to dry and even then may split after being carved.

                          Al

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                          • #14
                            Re: tools & telephone poles

                            Latex paint seems to work pretty good too. parafin wax is a tried and true method, be careful when melting it though in it's hot liquid state it is very flamable (or is that combustable?).

                            D.E.

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                            • #15
                              Re: tools & telephone poles

                              Yup, and it catches fire, too!

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