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  • Green-cut Cherry Wood

    I just acquired some decent sized cherry pieces from my neighbour's yard. It is junked up into about 2 foot sections and is about 14 inches in diameter. I moved it into the garage to start the drying process but wonder if I should cleave it in two; cut a groove from the outside to the heart on one side; barked or stripped; covered or uncovered? It was cut well after the sap rose in the tree so it is sopping wet right now. What do you turners think? There could be some decent bowls hidden in there somewhere!

    Ken
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  • #2

    Re: Green-cut Cherry Wood

    Ken, what is stopping you from rough turning the Cherry now ??

    If you want to end up with wood full of splits, then try to dry lumps of wood like you plan, they will NOT dry in 10 years that way and you will end up with compromised wood (Fire wood).

    First thing is to seal all the ends of the pieces, as it will take some time before you have these rough turned, here’s what I do with wet/green Black Cherry.

    When rough turned there is a lot less wood to dry, and the wood is able to move as it shrinks while drying (thinner but not shorter) and go oval, just make sure you stuff the rough turned bowl in a brown paper bag so it will dry without splitting
    Last edited by Leo Van Der Loo; 05-05-2020, 09:31 PM.

    Have fun and take care
    Leo Van Der Loo

    Comment


    • #3

      Re: Green-cut Cherry Wood

      Thanks Leo! I have zero experience working green wood on the lathe and value your advice. So, as soon as I can, I will cut it into blanks and round them on the lathe as you suggest. Should I pack the bags with shavings or just put rough turned blanks in? I know that you have gone over this lots of times before, thanks for bearing with me.

      Ken

      Comment


      • #4

        Re: Green-cut Cherry Wood

        Originally posted by KenL View Post
        Thanks Leo! I have zero experience working green wood on the lathe and value your advice. So, as soon as I can, I will cut it into blanks and round them on the lathe as you suggest. Should I pack the bags with shavings or just put rough turned blanks in? I know that you have gone over this lots of times before, thanks for bearing with me.

        Ken
        Use the empty brown paper bags Ken, place the bowl in and close the bag, place in a cool place and check the bags every couple of days in the first few weeks, it is at this time that mold could form, because of the high moisture, If you find mold, wipe it off, and replace in a dry bag (the old bag can be used again when dry) when the moisture drops below 20% the mold dies as it can’t live in drier air, that is the reason you do not place shavings in the bag, air can’t get around the bowl if shavings cover it and can’t dry.

        Simple explanation, wet bowl in, moisture goes up till air is saturated, drying stops, moisture from the air is absorbed by the bag and the moisture level in the bag goes down, bowl dries some more, the brown bag looses moisture to the surrounding air and will absorb moisture from air within de bag, bowl drive some more etc etc etc.

        This way the drying is slowed down, but it keeps drying slowly, the bowl is given time to adjust to the drying and the the tension that happens when the bowl is changing from round to oval and the wall get thinner on the sides but not on the end, it is critical that the wood is able to move and will do so without splitting if it dries slowly, as my thousands of turnings have proven this to me.

        It is not what you know, you just gave to understand it, makes it very simple, problem is, people want it dry yesterday

        These bowls have been taken from the bags and are dry, I used any kind of brown paper bag I could lay my hands on as you can see.



        Notorious for difficult to dry Apple wood, (and most fruit woods), here is a bunch of Applewood bowls that were dried as in the above.

        I don’t know what happened, but this picture and the above sentence was loaded in last night with the rest, but didn’t show now, a restore- discard note was here, so a restore brought it up, hope it stays

        Attached Files
        Last edited by Leo Van Der Loo; 05-06-2020, 11:56 AM.

        Have fun and take care
        Leo Van Der Loo

        Comment


        • #5

          Re: Green-cut Cherry Wood

          If you're going to rough turn, then the wall thickness should be 1/10 of the diameter - 10 inch wide bowl = 1 inch thick walls and bottom.
          In my limited experience, cherry is much more stable than apple, but it's still fruitwood.
          If you want, you can record the weight and date on the bag.
          Once it doesn't change you're good to go.
          Noel

          "Being so impressed with the beauty of nature, I never cease to be amazed at how the
          'touch of the human hand' can transform it into another kind of beauty that is so uniquely human.
          "

          John Snow, Outdoorsman and Retired Teacher

          Comment


          • #6

            Re: Green-cut Cherry Wood

            Thanks Gents. I will have at it over the next few days!

            Ken

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            • #7

              Re: Green-cut Cherry Wood

              I have been experimenting with drying in the microwave. I have some very green birch that was just cut. I managed to burn up the centre of one piece...I have learned shorter cook times than was initially recommended. I plan to try a bowl later today or tomorrow. I will report when done.
              When someone tells you it can't be done, it's a reflection of their limitations, not yours.

              Comment


              • #8

                Re: Green-cut Cherry Wood

                Thanks Lisa, That technique might work for some of the smaller pieces that I have in mind. The bigger bits will be handled as per Leo's advice above.

                Ken
                Last edited by KenL; 05-06-2020, 10:02 AM. Reason: typo

                Comment


                • #9

                  Re: Green-cut Cherry Wood

                  Originally posted by beachburl View Post
                  If you're going to rough turn, then the wall thickness should be 1/10 of the diameter - 10 inch wide bowl = 1 inch thick walls and bottom.
                  In my limited experience, cherry is much more stable than apple, but it's still fruitwood.
                  If you want, you can record the weight and date on the bag.
                  Once it doesn't change you're good to go.
                  I have a little different opinion on the wall thickness Noel, depending the wood and how uniform the grain is 8% is usually enough, but 10% is often said to be needed, I go for a 1inch wall at the rim on a 12 inch bowl, and as the bowl gets smaller going down, I reduce the wall thickness some, also a thinner bottom, as the distortion is rarely so bad as to need extra wood.

                  I had some bad experiences with tenons on the 10% bottoms, as it happened to the Black Cherry bowl in post #2 above, that tenon split badly, but I was able to rescue it, here’s another one, a Mulberry bowl where the tenon did split and I had to turn the split away, it went almost right through, and then glued a Black Walnut bottom/foot in, picture shows the bowl after it was done.

                  After a few of these problems I changed to using a recess rather than a tenon, with good success, and rarely use a tenon anymore
                  Last edited by Leo Van Der Loo; 05-06-2020, 11:52 AM.

                  Have fun and take care
                  Leo Van Der Loo

                  Comment


                  • #10

                    Re: Green-cut Cherry Wood

                    Originally posted by Chimera View Post
                    I have been experimenting with drying in the microwave. I have some very green birch that was just cut. I managed to burn up the centre of one piece...I have learned shorter cook times than was initially recommended. I plan to try a bowl later today or tomorrow. I will report when done.
                    I have done some experimentation of drying with an old low powered microwave that I had picked up at the curb site when this was done for recycling.

                    Had the inside fire and also the charcoal results from too fast drying, tried partial drying which was not a success either, to do a bowl safely it takes near a whole day to do short low power cycles, but it can be done, not worth it to me.

                    No guaranty and often a total loss of a finished product, you still have the distortion of the drying, though usually less because of the thinner walls of a finish turned piece.

                    So I use the microwave now only for warming up my cold coffee that I forget to drink, usually a few times

                    Have fun and take care
                    Leo Van Der Loo

                    Comment


                    • #11

                      Re: Green-cut Cherry Wood

                      yes it seems there is a lot of difference if the piece is small enough to turn on the microwave turntable or not, how hot you let it get. I am trying a birch cookie now that is about 8 inches in diameter. It is about 1/4 inch thick on one side and over 3/4 inch on the other side. It has not cracked yet though there are tiny tiny cracks all over each side of the cookie....I have been running it for 30 seconds and then flipping it and so on for 3 cycles. then letting it cool and doing it all over again. It is loosing about 20 grams of water each cycle so far.
                      When someone tells you it can't be done, it's a reflection of their limitations, not yours.

                      Comment

                      • Thread Continues Below...

                      • #12

                        Re: Green-cut Cherry Wood

                        Originally posted by Leo Van Der Loo View Post

                        In part....So I use the microwave now only for warming up my cold coffee that I forget to drink, usually a few times
                        My wife assumed that I was the only fellow who had that coffee problem! It is good to know I am not alone!

                        Ken

                        Comment


                        • #13

                          Re: Green-cut Cherry Wood

                          Originally posted by Leo Van Der Loo View Post

                          I have a little different opinion on the wall thickness Noel, depending the wood and how uniform the grain is 8% is usually enough,:
                          10% is easy for this math/arithmetic bozo to use.
                          I'd rather be too thick, than too thin and not have enough after 'ovalling' to turn.
                          As we so often say "this is how I do it."
                          Noel

                          "Being so impressed with the beauty of nature, I never cease to be amazed at how the
                          'touch of the human hand' can transform it into another kind of beauty that is so uniquely human.
                          "

                          John Snow, Outdoorsman and Retired Teacher

                          Comment


                          • #14

                            Re: Green-cut Cherry Wood

                            8%, 10%..... How about, "that looks about right".
                            billh

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                            • #15

                              Re: Green-cut Cherry Wood

                              The amount of shrinkage is actually smaller in just about every species of wood that grows around here, there are just a couple exceptions that I know of, namely Beech, Hickory, Oak species, Sweetgum, Hop-hornbeam, the Hickory surprised me where I was barely able to return the bowls with decent wall thicknesses like ¼”.

                              I do have a table here, but don’t forget these % given are for wet/green to Oven-dry, and we can get wet and green wood, we never end up with Oven-dry wood.

                              So to keep drying times plus shrinkage stresses down (thicker wood is more likely to split) I do keep the type of wood in mind when rough turning wet wood, so 10% is on the high side for wall thickness, it often used to be a safe number, but it still can surprise you DAMHIKT

                              The other thing is the difference between Tangential and Radial shrinkage, the greater this is the harder it is to keep it from splitting, where these two values are equal there is no tug of war and the drying will be easy, but there are other things playing a roll, like cross linked wood is less likely to split (we know about Elm and Honey Locust is another one).

                              Well as I say, never a dull moment with wood, it’ll trip you up when you don’t expect it .

                              Click image for larger version  Name:	Wood shrinkage.jpg Views:	1 Size:	37.8 KB ID:	1282610Click image for larger version  Name:	Wood shrinkage.jpg Views:	0 Size:	37.8 KB ID:	1282611
                              Last edited by Leo Van Der Loo; 05-08-2020, 03:15 PM.

                              Have fun and take care
                              Leo Van Der Loo

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