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  • i need help!!!!

    i was recently offered a peice of red oak and was asked to carve it for a club project. i asked if it has been dried. the response was that it is still drying. i turned it down because i thought that it would crack. did i do the right thing? or does anybody no of any ways to dry the wood be fore january 15. please let me know. you cann also e-mail me at [email protected] thankx

    casey

  • #2
    Re: i need help!!!!

    Well, I don't know crap about drying wood, but I did read a message here about microwave drying. I did it with a piece of branch from an oak tree (red oak? I have no clue). About 5 inches around and maybe 7 inches tall - 10 minutes at a time on 'defrost', letting it cool completely (and water evaporate) between each 'cook' period. About 3 days, it was pretty dry. I didn't do it day and night, of course...maybe 10 times through each day.

    Anyway, read through some of the past threads....or someone more organized than me will tell you WHICH thread.

    Teri <who just feels like answering people tonight>

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    • #3
      Re: i need help!!!!

      I had a piece of red oak 8ft. long 3ft.Dia. I left the bark on it, Painted the ends with many layers of latex paint, let it set in my garage for 2 years. Started carving on it and it cracked up within the first two weeks. The cracks sort of added to the carving. It's not easy using raw wood that has not been kiln dryed. The other option is glueup of kiln dryed wood.
      Visit Easton, Md's Waterfowl Festival November 8th 9th and 10th.

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      • #4
        Re: i need help!!!!

        I am new to this forum, but will be back often.

        Isn't the rule of thumb that it takes something like an inch per month for a log to dry to about 15%. So your 8ft X3ft log should have taken another year to dry properly. Or am I way off base here.

        Cheers!!

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        • #5
          Re: i need help!!!!

          There are several products on the market that will stop this type of cracking and checking when working with green wood. One is Pentacryl, and another PEG, or polyetheleneglycol. It's kinda pricy, but if you really need to carve that piece of red oak for a good cause, or commission, I'd give it a try. It's available in most mail order outfits that cater to carvers.

          Al

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          • #6
            Re: i need help!!!!

            I went to a seminar with Mr. Sobal as the instructer .He gave us a peice of pine that the tree was cut down 3 days before.WE carved Santas about 10 inches high.The wood was wet and carved like butter.He told us to wet it under the sink that nite and close it in a plastic bag .The next day we continued the same way.He said the carving was giving it the slow drying. It has never cracked.But if your talking about a long branch ,I am not sure of the results. Shimmy

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            • #7
              Re: i need help!!!!

              Hey Al, so do you mean that if I put that stuff on a piece of fresh cut wood, I can go ahead and carve it and expect it not to crack while it dries? That's cool...if I understood you correctly

              Most of my carvings are from pine 2x4s, 2x3s and 2x6s that I get at the lumber yard, but I'd sure like to use branches if it doesn't involve waiting a year for them to dry. I hate the expense of buying wood at carving shops.

              Teri

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              • #8
                Re: i need help!!!!

                Teri -- You do your incredible carvings from lumber yard PINE ??!!?? What could you do with a fine chunk of bass?

                Be still my heart.

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                • #9
                  www.woodcarverssupply.com

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                  • #10
                    Re: i need help!!!!

                    Nancy, yes, I use mostly pine. I've used basswood (though not alot), but I actually prefer pine - I like the knots and grain patterns...I think they help give me that 'old time' look. I know I'm weird. I really haven't experimented with different woods much....only stuff I find along the road, etc...and most of it I have NO idea what it is - I just carve it :-)

                    Al, thanks for the info - I'm going to try some of that stuff...I have a few logs here that I want to get into, but they're green. Thanks!!!

                    Teri

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                    • #11
                      http://albums.photo.epson.com/j/AlbumList?u=4055528

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                      • #12
                        Re: i need help!!!!

                        I carved some fresh cut aspen and haven't seen any sign of cracking yet. Should mention though that the branches were only about 2 in. dia. Aspen is a nice wood to work with and holds detail almost as good as basswood. To store pieces for future use I either dip the end in wax or tie on saran wrap, both methods have worked for me. If aspen is available in your neck of the woods it's worth a try. 8)

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                        • #13
                          Re: i need help!!!!

                          Yes, Callynne, detail in pine can be an adventure. I've lost noses, ears, and all sorts of things.....when that happens, the piece just turns into something else :
                          If I keep my blades very sharp and am careful, though, I can get some beautiful detail. You guys are all making think about trying basswood again, though....I can't say I really gave it a fair shot. But then....what if I love it? Is it readily available in big chunks? Expensive? Aspen, too, huh? I guess I'm going to have to break down and go wood shopping...just to see what you all are talking about.

                          Teri

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                          • #14
                            Re: i need help!!!!

                            I'm with Teri xxx I line the grainy knotty stuff xxx one of my favorite sources is 4x4 cedar fence posts. An 8 footer is around ten dollars. Most of the time I don't really have a firm idea of what I'm carving when I start. Sometimes I'm not sure of what I have when I'm done either. But have a lot of enjoyment getting there. The knots and grain kind of dicate what I'm doing. If I know exactly what I want before I start though I go to the woodshed and get the basswood out.

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