|Project by BobAnderton||posted 09-24-2015 02:29 AM||1323 views||5 times favorited||7 comments|
I made this vase to give to the couple that let me mill a mesquite tree on their ranch a couple of years ago. I used a stacked ring lamination to make this vase with a parabolic shape 14 inches tall and 12 inches in diameter. This was the tallest piece I’ve ever turned and I made a steady rest before I started and I think it was the only thing that saved this piece quite a few times. The last picture is where I’m holding it with a donut chuck and the steady rest right before I part off the waste block to finish the bottom. I started with a piece from a large branch that was about 3’ long and 3 inches thick and about 7 inches wide. I cut it in half and put them side by side to get the width I needed. I made a sliding dovetail before cutting the rings so the rings halves are dovetailed together but you don’t really notice it unless you’re looking for it. This was a really tough piece to turn because it seemed like it was end grain and knots all the way around, and dry mesquite is pretty hard anyway. Mesquite is prone to ring shake and there is a little of that going on here in the piece I started with. I thought about filling in the little shakes and cracks with epoxy but they all seemed solid and I figured it reflected the nature of the wood so I left them alone.
I also included a picture of milling the tree with my chainsaw mill. The mesquite proved to be really slow drying, I guess due to the resinous nature of the wood. I also had a lot of red headed ash borer grubs under the bark and I ended up edging all these boards with the bandsaw before drying to get rid of them. They seem to really love mesquite sapwood.
All and all I’m please with how this came out. It posed a lot of new challenges for me but it all worked out in the end.
Finished with Watco Danish Oil and Beall Buffed with Carnuba wax.
-- Bob Anderton - Austin, TX - Nova 3000 lathe, Alaskan Mark III mill, Husqavarna Saw