SPIRAL DESIGN #2: The construction...Selection of wood

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Blog entry by BertFlores58 posted 08-31-2010 03:45 PM 2128 reads 0 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: Whirlpool Part 2 of SPIRAL DESIGN series Part 3: Endgrain discolorization ..... solved. »

It took me a different trial of wood samples. Since the plan is to have it done in endgrain, I have to select the wood that will not break at thickness of 7 mm or nearly 3/16 inch. I used my own strength for testing it. I have found several strong wood mostly 2/3. Cut them into desired pieces and looks like this.

wood selections

Another difficulty is select proper combinations of color depending on the design. I need some contrast to emphasize the design. I have to test the pieces by spraying water to the pieces. I was satisfied with the wood pieces I find and match them to form squares out of two different triangles.


wood groupings

The gluing turn out good and not a lot of work however, the sawing is not perfect and most of the time I have to use file to have a good and perpendicular contact with each joint pieces. Since I have to make 6 different ciculars sections of different design, I make a template as a pattern to cut the pieces in the right directions and positions. I made 3 sections (only from the bigger side) and let the small pieces to be done later. I planed the sides to be 10 degrees with a jack plane. Doing this manually makes me confident that I can control the need angle and joint requirements. Here are some photos on the results.

the 3 sections

the fourth day

Here is the progress as of today….


TO ALL LJ. I really need help on finishing the endgrain. I tested the first section I made and just rub it with poly but to my dismay, the colors of the wood changes to all brown with just a little contrast as the original when I spray water. Is there a secret way to finish endgrain so that it will retain the color of the wood?

Here is the closeup of what happened after a coat of poly… Contrast was lost compared to the photo above where there was no coat yet.

poly coat

Hi Martyn (Britboxmaker), I you ever read, I now realized why you are using sanding sealer and wax.. I think I will follow your way. I will test this by next opportunity.

By the way, to let you know… This a very slow project… I am still thinking how to work faster in using Jigs.. Anyone who have in mind is very welcome…. I don’t know if I ever finished this cause it is really time consuming and I do my woodworks only during the weekends….. till next….

-- Bert

9 comments so far

View b2rtch's profile


4861 posts in 3077 days

#1 posted 08-31-2010 03:50 PM

Bert,Hey! this is my name.

-- Bert

View BertFlores58's profile


1698 posts in 2951 days

#2 posted 08-31-2010 04:05 PM

Bert, yes I know and no worry about that since I always share what I am doing for the others benefit. This time you can help me out to do make the spiral in flesh. I can let you be my buddy as well.

-- Bert

View Eric_S's profile


1565 posts in 3224 days

#3 posted 08-31-2010 04:08 PM

Looking good so far. I expected it to take much longer but you’re making great progress!

-- - Eric Noblesville, IN

View b2rtch's profile


4861 posts in 3077 days

#4 posted 08-31-2010 04:10 PM

I was just kidding , I do not worry.
How did got your name?
Mine is short for Bertrand.
Obviously you are Asiatic and I was not expecting an Asiatic man to be named Bert, just curious.
The piece that you want to make looks very ambitious and very nice.
Have a very nice day.

-- Bert

View BritBoxmaker's profile


4611 posts in 3065 days

#5 posted 08-31-2010 04:15 PM

Bert. I admire your tanacity and patience. Planing up those pieces, by hand, sounds like a lot of hard work to me. Also could you give us an idea of scale, what diameter will the finished pattern be?

As for the finish. I take it your ‘poly’ was spirit based, which would darken the lighter wood and reduce the contrast. Oil does this as well. You are right about sanding sealer and wax, this would maintain the contrast. Water based poly also keeps the contrast initially but after the third or fourth coat (if you do that many) can introduce a light cloudiness, which again destroys contrast . Although I’m sure you will get as many opinions here about finish as there are hours in a day.

Keep it up Bert. This will be a stunner.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging.

View BertFlores58's profile


1698 posts in 2951 days

#6 posted 08-31-2010 04:16 PM

My complete name is posted… Norberto … sound spanish but I am a Filipino… here in Manila. Just read my profile and you will find some info. UTAH is I think inland…. during my time as a seafarer on merchant vessel, I had visited USA sea ports… New Orleans, Portland (Main), Savanna, Philadelphia, and many others…. but I am sure a lot of changes are there nowadays… By the way,... Nice day…till tomorrow. It is 10 pm here…

-- Bert

View BertFlores58's profile


1698 posts in 2951 days

#7 posted 08-31-2010 04:27 PM

Martyn, Thanks for giving warnings on that endgrain.. I had examined my dovetail wooden box and note same it really darkens the endgrain…. I remember your impossible been in flesh and possible. I hope I could do it also with your inspiring words… The end finish will be 24 inches (around 60 cm) in diameter… It will be bigger as I will add ending curves and outer moulding framing. I change my mind from using it as a lazy larry. Some of the observers here suggested to let it be mounted on a hardwood and make it as table top. thanks

-- Bert

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9231 posts in 2948 days

#8 posted 08-31-2010 05:30 PM

This is really going to be a beautiful project. The amount of work you are doing with hand planing and all is amazing. You have a lot of patience and skill.

I am very interested in seeing how the final finish comes out, as I am also looking to expand my knowledge on finishing. I just got some sanding sealer and I am going to give it a go as soon as a suitable candidate (project) comes up.

Thank you for taking the time to do the step-by-step posting. It is wonderful to watch and so good of you to share your experiences with us.

:) Sheila

-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

View degoose's profile


7234 posts in 3383 days

#9 posted 08-31-2010 10:12 PM

If I had time I would take a crack at this myself but too busy…You seem to be having fun and learning new things too…

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

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