Thursday, July 28, 2011

Local woods only

1 quick photo of something I've been playing with the last couple of nights. I don't want to give too many details yet, I am willing to say that these are for our club's August President's Challenge - Local woods only.

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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Necessary evil

 More work with the Mountain Mahogany.  This set is from the butt end of the largest log and ended up at just over 12" diameter.
 I'm not sure if it's visable here but there is a fair amount of curl in this wood.  It's subtle but its there.
 I was afraid I was going to lose the smallest piece in the set, a portion of the rim broke off while I was coring it out of the 2nd largest piece.  I was able to move the piece slightly off center to compensate and to save the piece.
 Here's most of the rest of my haul, cut, split, and sealed.  Not a fun thing to do in Phoenix this time of year but a necessary evil.
I've also been working on roughing out some hollow forms.  Most of this wood is from Mike.  The 2 big forms are Silver Maple burl from Mike (darker color on the left) and Box Elder Burl I received in a trade (lighter color on the right).  There's also a smaller Box Elder Burl hollow form immediately to the right of the larger one.  These blanks were not from Mike, they were received in a trade while I was in Idaho.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Mike's generosity

These 3 pieces were all from the stuff I got from Mike Mahoney.  Left to right they are, curly Black Ash, red burly Box Elder, and curly Mormon Poplar.  These will probably end up as hollow forms of various sizes.  Eventually.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Mountain Mahogany

 My first roughout from Mountain Mahogany.  Roughly 7" diameter.  True to everything I'd read the wood is very dense and very heavy.  It turns very well but does seem a little on the brittle side.
There is a wonderful contrast between the heartwood and the sapwood.  In many cases I will remove much of the sapwood, in this case I'm probably going to try and retain most of it as I really like the color and the contrast.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Vacation haul

I'm back after a 3 week vacation to Idaho to visit family and to go on a 5 day white water rafting trip.  Along the way I picked up wood whenever possible.  This stack was sourced from Mike Mahoney and includes curly Ash, curly Maple, Maple burl, red Box Elder, and quilted Mormon Poplar.  All of this came from Mike's personal stash.  I also got a tour of Mike's operation - from his shop, to his drying room, on to his shipping room, and a small tour of his home and a quick look at his turning collection.  I don't think I've ever met a nicer person than Mike and he's a fantastic turning to boot.
While in Idaho I visited a couple of turners, Brian Brown in Idaho Falls and Dick Anderson in Pocatello.  I met Dick briefly at the 2011 Desert Woodturning Roundup and I met Brian a couple of years ago when he was in town on business.  With Dick I swapped some Mesquite for some Madrone Burl, Russian Olive, and a piece of Mountain Mahogany.  Brian and I traded some Mesquite, African Sumac, Desert Ironwood, and Olive for Russian Olive, Osage Orange, and Box Elder Burl.
My biggest haul on the vacation though was some Mountain Mahogany I managed to get near the end.  I thought I could get some in the 6" diameter range and hoped to find some between 8-10" diameter.  The biggest piece is approx 12" x 14" on the butt end.  It's also extremely heavy, similar to Desert Ironwood.  When dry it will not float in water, one of only a handful of woods with this property.