Oak Burls?

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Blog entry by bluchz posted 10-24-2009 12:16 AM 3031 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

It seams in NC i can find oak burls in the woods. I log for a living. Is there any woodworking use for oak burls? I recently found one i would guess to be 36” round. The last one i brought home broke apart when it dried, so i am not sure if these are worth rescuing from the woods.

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4 comments so far

View Karson's profile


35125 posts in 4423 days

#1 posted 10-24-2009 01:18 AM

I have one that was probably 24” wide, I cut slices from it for making some pens. They held up OK because they were 3/4 X 3/4

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia †

View reggiek's profile


2240 posts in 3292 days

#2 posted 10-24-2009 01:44 AM

Brurls are good for turning…and for cutting into vaneers mostly.

For turning, burls are better if turned slightly green….they will typically have inclusions, checks and bark in them. Oak, at least the Ca version to which I am used too, has a long grain that makes it unstable in burls when the moisture is too low. The best bet is to cut them green and seal with wax or anchor seal until you use. Once turned be prepared to dry them slowly in an area with moderate heat and humidity…you may want to treat any visible defects with CA glue or a poly resin (wood stabilizing) prior to using…

-- Woodworking.....My small slice of heaven!

View jeffthewoodwacker's profile


603 posts in 3826 days

#3 posted 10-24-2009 01:48 AM

Reggiek is correct – if turned while green they do well. If you seal them up real well with either anchorseal or paraffin wax they will hold up better. I usually soak them well with a 50/50 titebond II glue/water mixture and put them in my vacuum box. Some oak burls are beautiful when turned – others are garbage. As John Jordan says – life is too short to turn crappy wood!

-- Those that say it can't be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

View OregonBurls's profile


580 posts in 3170 days

#4 posted 10-24-2009 02:39 AM

Yes! Oak burls turn great. I have found that most oak burls are realy bunyuns. I have rarely found turn “pin” oak burls. but the bunyuns are still beautiful wood. This is a pic of a black oak burl.

-- Greg, Southern Oregon, What can I say but God Is Good!

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