Green pen blank question
#10
  
I would like to turn some pens from a freshly cut tree.
My dad planted it many years ago and I would like to turn pens for all of the grandkids from it.

Any suggestions on drying out blanks quickly?

Thanks
Greg

It's better to burn out than it is to rust

Danchris Nursery
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#11
  Re: Green pen blank question by 2beast (I would like to turn...)
Considering the line of work you're in, you may know somebody who has a kiln. I'd resaw the wood into 1" thick planks and see if you can get it kiln dried. If you can't, then cut it into 3/4" x 3/4" x ~5" long blanks and microwave it, or possibly use your oven. There are resources online for drying wood in the microwave. I'd go longer than 5" just in case you get any end checking.
Janus was a disaster, coming or going - K. L, McReynolds 07/01/2015

My blog: http://wcwoodworking.blogspot.com/
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#12
  Re: Green pen blank question by 2beast (I would like to turn...)
I agree with crokett; oversize the blanks to account for warpage and cracking. I've heard of boiling blanks but I've never tried quick dry techniques. I have enough issues with just slow drying.
Cellulose runs through my veins!
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#13
  Re: Green pen blank question by 2beast (I would like to turn...)
We have no idea of the moisture content of your wood you want to turn nor species. Some species will definitely crack or split if try and force dry them. Outside surface wood may feel dry, but center still wet and will split while turning soon after.

Since don’t know where you live don’t know if sap tuning or not. Drying wood simply a water removal process. Warmth and relative humidity have a lot to do with wood losing moisture. Suggest processing into 1” x 12” blanks and let them set out for two to three months in cool dry place. Of course don’t forget to end seal. Forget about that 1” per year nonsense, might surprise you how soon blanks will be ready to turn.

Most consumer moisture meters don’t read wood with MC of 60 or 70 percent. So using a scale to weighing your blanks might be more helpful. When they stop losing weight your wood is at EMC. People use mail or kitchen scales to weigh their pen blanks.

Good luck with it.
Bill
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#14
  Re: Green pen blank question by 2beast (I would like to turn...)
(12-07-2017, 09:47 AM)2beast Wrote: I would like to turn some pens from a freshly cut tree.
My dad planted it many years ago and I would like to turn pens for all of the grandkids from it.

Any suggestions on drying out blanks quickly?

Thanks

Microwave the best option.  Since water leaves end grain 10 to 12 times faster than quarter or face grain, that's your place to watch.  I would rive the wood to minimize warp surprises, and then microwave low, slow and often.  Might want to keep the RH high for the first several cycles by keeping the pieces in a plastic bag. Allow to cool/condense, then turn the bag inside out and re-nuke.  When the bag shows little or no moisture, you're there.  Allow a day or two for final open air equalization, and then test bore.  If the center is still damp, you'll feel it.
Better to follow the leader than the pack. Less to step in.
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#15
  Re: Green pen blank question by 2beast (I would like to turn...)
If you nuke them don't use the kitchen microwave. Your wife will not be happy. BTDT and have the scars to prove it.
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#16
  Re: RE: Green pen blank question by Angus (If you nuke them don...)
(12-07-2017, 08:28 PM)Angus Wrote: If you nuke them don't use the kitchen microwave. Your wife will not be happy. BTDT and have the scars to prove it.


Caution:  Don't try to go too dry, or you might ignite.  Dry knots are a real peril, too.

And NEVER microwave elm.  My "shop" microwave, formerly the kitchen appliance, still has an air about it....
Better to follow the leader than the pack. Less to step in.
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#17
  Re: Green pen blank question by 2beast (I would like to turn...)
Thanks for all of the ideas  Yes

We will give it a shot
Greg

It's better to burn out than it is to rust

Danchris Nursery
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#18
  Re: Green pen blank question by 2beast (I would like to turn...)
If the microwave doesn't work on your test piece, you could just wait and air dry them to turn for next year.

I've got a box in my shop with a bunch of 6" lengths from a Redbud branch I cut a month or so ago. Not sure if Redbud will make a nice pen, I'll find out in a year or 2.
"73 is the best number because it's the 21st prime number, and it's mirror 37 is the 12th prime number, whose mirror 21 is the product of 7 times 3. Also in binary 73 is 1001001, which is a palindrome." - Dr. Sheldon Cooper
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