Saturday, January 15, 2011

Going burling

First a little housekeeping.  I finished the burning on the trio a couple of nights ago (Thursday, I think).

 Once again, they're Maple, all 3 are 2 1/4" diameter and range from 1 3/4" tall to 2 3/4" tall.

All 3 pieces have been signed with my standard signature, a stylized version of my initials, JTC, that also look like a stylized roman numeral 3.  My name is Jason Thomas, my father is Jeff Thomas, his father was Jack Thomas so I'm the 3rd generation with those initials.  For the record, my son's name is Christopher and his middle name is not Thomas.

Most of my day today was spent picking up and moving my latest purchase.  I found a Maple burl listed on eBay this week and I ended up the highest bidder.  Fortunately it was local (~50 miles each way) so I didn't have to pay shipping.  He had the burl listed as 36" diameter, 40" tall, and 1000 pounds.  I doubted all of those figures but I was quickly proven wrong (except for the weight, I'm still not convinced it's 1000 pounds).  My six year old daughter posing for scale, it's laying on it's side in this photo.

It took 2 of us, plus his teenage son, a come along , a rope, and 45 minutes of hard labor to get it loaded.  I rented a 5' X 9' trailer with a ramp to get it moved. Unload went quite a bit easier.  I lowered the ramp and looped the rope around the burl before hooking up the other end to my lathe.  I then simply pulled forward to leave the burl sitting in the middle of my driveway.  An hour of winching got it inside and with the help of a neighbor we got it upright.

I still want to move it a little bit to get it out of the way but for now it's safely stored in my garage.  As you can see by the 48" level it's every bit of the 40" tall he listed and it's about 38" diameter. It's too big for my chainsaw so I'm considering having it slabbed at one of the local sawmills so I don't butcher it.  That will add significantly to the overall cost but I got it cheap enough that it still makes sound financial sense.

1 comment:

  1. Geez, that's a beauty. When you say you are going to slab it, are you thinking into bowl blanks (5"-8" deep) or more along the lines of platters and such? Can I offer a suggestion?

    Take a look at some of Mike Mahoney's work. He has does some sets of kitchenware from the same chunk of wood. Big salad bowl, a serving dish or two cored from the big bowl, salt and pepper mills, individual serving sized bowls and plates, get the idea. Depending on how tight everything is inside, you could do a similar set which would be gorgeous (and relatively easy sale to the right person too, if that interests you).

    Cool chunk of wood. Let us know how it comes along.