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Bill Gooch
 
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Default Basswood

I was given a half dozen large chunks of basswood - 4ft lengths about 10
inches round. It's green and I'm not having much luck turning it. Either
its the wood or my technique but I seem to be ripping the wood apart rather
than getting the nice curls coming off the gouge that I get with ash etc.
Also, the one bowl I have pretty much finished was very difficult to sand, a
lot of long fibers that took a lot of work with a 40grit sandpaper to get to
a point where they disappeared.

Is there a technique to use with basswood or is it better off left to
carvers? Any thoughts?


--
Bill Gooch
Kemptville, ON.




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william_b_noble
 
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sounds like dull tools to me, that would be the first thing to check - once
you get deep tearout, sanding is really hard. If the tools are sharp, then
(other than using wax or laquer or CA glue to harden the tearout areas for
better cutting)I have no other suggestions
"Bill Gooch" wrote in message
.. .
I was given a half dozen large chunks of basswood - 4ft lengths about 10
inches round. It's green and I'm not having much luck turning it. Either
its the wood or my technique but I seem to be ripping the wood apart rather
than getting the nice curls coming off the gouge that I get with ash etc.
Also, the one bowl I have pretty much finished was very difficult to sand,
a lot of long fibers that took a lot of work with a 40grit sandpaper to get
to a point where they disappeared.

Is there a technique to use with basswood or is it better off left to
carvers? Any thoughts?


--
Bill Gooch
Kemptville, ON.






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George
 
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"william_b_noble" wrote in message
news:1120567948.330ae5eebfc6b9a691571cd8173f3e45@t eranews...
sounds like dull tools to me, that would be the first thing to check -

once
you get deep tearout, sanding is really hard. If the tools are sharp,

then
(other than using wax or laquer or CA glue to harden the tearout areas for
better cutting)I have no other suggestions
"Bill Gooch" wrote in message
.. .
I was given a half dozen large chunks of basswood - 4ft lengths about 10
inches round. It's green and I'm not having much luck turning it. Either
its the wood or my technique but I seem to be ripping the wood apart

rather
than getting the nice curls coming off the gouge that I get with ash etc.


Wet and soft wood is a double task. Answer is to present a sharpened edge
properly. Scraping is suicide, as are angles which provide a short portion
of the edge across the fibers. I have best luck using large-radius gouges,
and yes, this includes roughing gouges on the outside, because they allow
more edge in the cut to slide the wood along, allowing it to sever itself.
It's the same as in carving, little forward and downward pressure, and
sliding sideways produces the cleanest cut. With the lathe doing the
sliding for us, we only have to do the A-B-C so that it cuts, rather than
scrapes and tears.

Of course, things will improve once the wood is dry, so it's not as
important if you're going to turn later for circular.

Then there's that old paradox of how lacquer and CA, both harder than the
wood fibers, are lumped with a lubricant which is not.


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Chuck
 
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Default

On Tue, 5 Jul 2005 08:07:12 -0400, "Bill Gooch"
wrote:

I was given a half dozen large chunks of basswood - 4ft lengths about 10
inches round. It's green and I'm not having much luck turning it. Either
its the wood or my technique but I seem to be ripping the wood apart rather
than getting the nice curls coming off the gouge that I get with ash etc.
Also, the one bowl I have pretty much finished was very difficult to sand, a
lot of long fibers that took a lot of work with a 40grit sandpaper to get to
a point where they disappeared.

Is there a technique to use with basswood or is it better off left to
carvers? Any thoughts?


Bill,

I've never turned green basswood, but from your description it sounds
very much like turning green ash. My advice would be, get your bowl
shape the way you want it. trying to avoid too much tearout by
avoiding scrapers and keeping your gouge sharp. Then, when you get to
the shape you want, get your gouge razor sharp, either off the grinder
or give it a hone or whatever you do to sharpen it.

When you've got it the best you can get it, present it to the wood at
a 90 degree angle, so you are taking a shear cut, and the tearout and
nasty, long fibers will be sheared off clean as a whistle.

I just turned some storm-downed ash the other day like that, and the
stuff was so wet the sap was slinging everywhere. On my last pass, I
did a shear cut and the finish is no worse than 220 grit would do.
Perhaps a bit better.

--
Chuck *#:^)
chaz3913(AT)yahoo(DOT)com
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Derek Andrews
 
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Bill Gooch wrote:
I was given a half dozen large chunks of basswood - 4ft lengths about 10
inches round. It's green and I'm not having much luck turning it. Either
its the wood or my technique but I seem to be ripping the wood apart rather
than getting the nice curls coming off the gouge that I get with ash etc.


In addition to the suggestions you already have, you might try using a
tool with a much more acute sharpening angle than your standard bowl
gouges. Maybe you have a spindle gouge sharpened like this which you
could try out to see if it makes a difference before regrinding your
bowl gouges. (I assume you are bowl turning rather than spindle?) I say
this based on the general rule of using finer sharpening angles on
softer woods.

The other thing I would try is cranking up the lathe speed and making
really fine cuts.

I have not turned basswood, but I did try a chunk I have here with my
carving chisels. I must admit that it did not cut nearly as cleanly as lime.

--
Derek Andrews, woodturner

http://www.seafoamwoodturning.com
http://chipshop.blogspot.com
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/toolrest/










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Barry N. Turner
 
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I suspect the basswood may turn something like some wet buckeye I had a few
weeks ago. I couldn't get a clean cut with a freshly ground and honed bowl
gouge. I finally got it rough turned, then let it dry a bit before I did
the finishing cuts. I did a lot of power sanding too.

Barry


"Bill Gooch" wrote in message
.. .
I was given a half dozen large chunks of basswood - 4ft lengths about 10
inches round. It's green and I'm not having much luck turning it. Either
its the wood or my technique but I seem to be ripping the wood apart

rather
than getting the nice curls coming off the gouge that I get with ash etc.
Also, the one bowl I have pretty much finished was very difficult to sand,

a
lot of long fibers that took a lot of work with a 40grit sandpaper to get

to
a point where they disappeared.

Is there a technique to use with basswood or is it better off left to
carvers? Any thoughts?


--
Bill Gooch
Kemptville, ON.






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Prometheus
 
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On Tue, 5 Jul 2005 08:07:12 -0400, "Bill Gooch"
wrote:

I was given a half dozen large chunks of basswood - 4ft lengths about 10
inches round. It's green and I'm not having much luck turning it. Either
its the wood or my technique but I seem to be ripping the wood apart rather
than getting the nice curls coming off the gouge that I get with ash etc.
Also, the one bowl I have pretty much finished was very difficult to sand, a
lot of long fibers that took a lot of work with a 40grit sandpaper to get to
a point where they disappeared.

Is there a technique to use with basswood or is it better off left to
carvers? Any thoughts?


Might need to be dry- basswood was the first thing I tried turning,
and it worked really nicely on the lathe, though I was using
kiln-dried 8/4 stock. Not sure if it is worth the effort visually,
though- that's an awfully bland wood.
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Derek Andrews
 
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Prometheus wrote:
Not sure if it is worth the effort visually,
though- that's an awfully bland wood.


I would certainly be looking at using it for purely decorative pieces
that are going to include carving or texturing and perhaps some
pyrography or colouring etc.

--
Derek Andrews, woodturner

http://www.seafoamwoodturning.com
http://chipshop.blogspot.com
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/toolrest/








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