Question of cutting a log for turning

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Blog entry by cajunpen posted 03-04-2014 02:57 AM 1320 reads 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I’ve got a few Pecan logs that I’ve had for over 10 years – so they are dry wood. They are from the branches of a own Pecan tree and they are about 5-6” in diameter and about 12 – 14” long. I just posted a box that I turned from one of the logs – and I’m wondering if I made the best choice as to using the log. I turned this box from the end grain, can I cut it into a blank that would put the end grain on the sides and I would be turning through the long grain? I know I can cut the blank that way, but is that a good choice – or is it better going through the end grain for a box or similar project?

Any input will be appreciated.

-- Bill - "Suit yourself and let the rest be pleased."

3 comments so far

View Karson's profile


35152 posts in 4637 days

#1 posted 03-04-2014 04:02 AM


I’ve seen many bowls that were turned from a half a log. The center of the log it the top of the bowl and the bottom of the bowl is the outer layer where the bark would be.

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

View doubleDD's profile


8039 posts in 2280 days

#2 posted 03-04-2014 04:51 AM

Bill , when you cut into the end grain you will get more true lines and color. When cutting in the long grain things will change quite a bit. You can end up with all sorts of different features. Of course any time cutting into a log there’s no idea of what may turn up. Some people say it is harder to cut end grain, but I really don’t see much difference. I prefer end grain but do both all the time. My decision is usually based on the diameter of the log. A 10- 12’’ log or larger I will split and turn in the long grain. Where as anything smaller is end grain cut.
I also have more success without drying problems or cracks turning end grain. Hope that helps out.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

View Roger's profile


20965 posts in 3041 days

#3 posted 03-04-2014 01:21 PM

I’ve always been told to cut the pith out of a log first

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

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