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SPALTED OAK DUNNAGE - Cooley's Boots

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Project by Roman - THE BOOTMAN posted 12-12-2011 09:07 PM 2353 views 0 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

A few weeks back I was asked to pick up some angle iron for a window we were installing in an office building. This took me to a steel fabricating plant where I met Mr. Cooley. He had a large crew of men and was gracious enough to give me a tour of the plant. This company does some large steel fabrication work and while touring the plant I happened to see a piece of wood under some strap steel. I was informed that this piece of wood was a piece of ‘dunnage’ used in stacking steel during transport.
The piece was about 14 inches long and a rough 6 inch by 5 inch block. It was severely weathered, bruised with unknown liquid stains that made it difficult for me to identify the species. I asked if I could have the piece to carve a boot. It had a large knot at one end and some severe checking.
In my workshop I had cut one blank to incorporate the knot and soon found that I had a piece of red oak that was also severely spalted. For the wood, I had promised Mr. Cooley a boot patterned after his heavy work boots seen in picture 3. Since there was some extra wood left over I had enough to complete a pair. Picture 2 shows the boots as they came out of the wood. This was an interesting project as the wood had much variation in colour and texture and the carving had to be handled with much care to minimize splitting and over carving of the spalted areas.
The pair was power carved with a Foredom and sanded with sanding drums on a flex-shaft. I finished the wood with Shellawax a ‘U Beaut Polishes’ product from Australia. This polish is used by wood turners to get a fine finish on their pens.

-- Roman:... These Boots Were Made For 'Talkin'!





9 comments so far

View peteg's profile

peteg

3855 posts in 2285 days


#1 posted 12-12-2011 10:14 PM

Great job Roman, you always get them to look “wearable” somehow, guess thats what you get when you know what you are doing :: ))
I also use a lot of U Beaut product & can also recommend

-- Pete G: If you always do what you always did you'll always get what you always got

View spud72's profile

spud72

323 posts in 2956 days


#2 posted 12-12-2011 11:58 PM

Lovely job!

-- Guy,PEI

View jeepturner's profile

jeepturner

939 posts in 2254 days


#3 posted 12-13-2011 01:22 AM

Nice boots, but to have them in that shop, I have to ask, Are they steel toed?
I know, I know, my jokes aren’t all that funny.
You do some great carving.
Thanks for sharing them with us.

-- Mel,

View chrisstef's profile

chrisstef

15661 posts in 2468 days


#4 posted 12-13-2011 02:27 AM

Roman, great project its a dead ringer and i really like the story that comes with the lumber. Ive got ask how is spalted oak to work with. Ive got a huge piece of red oak trunk thats been laying just off my yard in the woods where its always shady and typically damp. Maybe ive got somethin there ??

-- rock, chalk, jayhawk

View DaveGlx's profile

DaveGlx

339 posts in 1906 days


#5 posted 12-13-2011 11:20 AM

Fantastic carving. The wood and shoes have lots of character. Well done mate.

-- Dave -

View Roman - THE BOOTMAN's profile

Roman - THE BOOTMAN

786 posts in 2148 days


#6 posted 12-13-2011 06:12 PM

Chris, What you need to watch out for in spalted wood is the different densities within the piece. How you cut and sand the piece for finish is tricky, but the effort is well worth it in the end. There will be a few surprises I am sure!

-- Roman:... These Boots Were Made For 'Talkin'!

View chrisstef's profile

chrisstef

15661 posts in 2468 days


#7 posted 12-13-2011 10:39 PM

Thanks Roman … i might just cut a length of that old log and see whats goin on.

-- rock, chalk, jayhawk

View jjw5858's profile

jjw5858

1132 posts in 2064 days


#8 posted 12-13-2011 10:53 PM

Great carving, terrific job on these. Thanks for sharing them.

-- "Always continue to learn, laugh and share!" JJW

View LittlePaw's profile

LittlePaw

1571 posts in 2540 days


#9 posted 12-14-2011 12:02 AM

Great job, Roman, as always!

-- LittlePAW - The sweetest sound in my shop, next to Mozart, is what a hand plane makes slicing a ribbon.

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