Stabilized Buckeye Burl Pen

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Project by Trillium posted 08-25-2011 10:18 PM 1390 views 0 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch

OK..a little bit of a long winded post here. Buckeye burl; it has been a bit of an obsession for me ( in my mind anyway) for a while now. Hard to find wood. Once I finally got my mitts on some I was a bit stunned at how light weight it is… how fragile it seemed. I got my hands on an old jewelry csating vacuum table..some Minwax wood hardener and the guts to risk my blanks. In the vacuum chamber they bubble like mad for maybe two ro three minutes… once the wood looks uniformly “wet” they can be removed and sucessfully turned after as little as 3 hours drying time. This stuff gets HARD (quit snickering)... and makes the turning a bit odorous. The polish was with sandpaper from 120g to 400g on tape then sheets from 800 /1000 / 1500 / 2000 followed with a liberal app of Huts PPP. The pen reeked of hardener for a few hours and then dissipated. The reason for this lengthy post for which many may not care… is to relate what I did, what I observed and what I suspect! I am thinking that I could have cut the blank in halves , drilled the 7mm holes for the tubes, turned a couple of tennon style bushings to fit the holes and turned the tubes to around 3/8” diameter, removed em and put them in a pan of hardener for thirty minutes and stabilized em just as well without the vacuum. FYI… Buckeye burl is stunningly beautiful in my eyes (and worthy of all six dang pictures to show the awesome burl / grain) but frightfully delicate and probably REQUIRES stabilizing.. I just had to bite that bullet and try it… so in summary.. go to Lowes get ya some Minwax hardener and an aluminum pan and get to working that buckeye you have pigeonholed for “some day” when ya have the hang of stabilizing!

-- Lou

2 comments so far

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

20594 posts in 3130 days

#1 posted 08-26-2011 03:34 AM

Very nice pen. I have never turned buckeye. Is it from Ohio?

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View Trillium's profile


58 posts in 2705 days

#2 posted 08-26-2011 04:08 AM

To answer honestly I would have to say “no, from Atlanta” thats where I bought the blank… not sure where it is really from though. What I do know , is that I want more of it!

-- Lou

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