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Forum topic by hornhunter posted 1607 days ago 1525 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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hornhunter

20 posts in 1687 days


1607 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: butternut question

My father had some butternut boards in his garage attic for 30 tears or so. I got one down a few weeks ago and planed it and had some bad tear out. The wood is too dry. Is there a remedy for this other than lots of sanding?

-- Dean, Kinderhook, New York


8 replies so far

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barlow

129 posts in 2374 days


#1 posted 1606 days ago

Butternut usually tears when the knives are dull, and/or if the stock isn’t dry kilned. As you know butternut is a very soft wood which is not prone to brittleness at lower moisture contents as with your dense hardwoods such as ash, hickory, maples or oaks. And sometimes no matter what you do it may raise the grain just because.

-- barlow

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hornhunter

20 posts in 1687 days


#2 posted 1605 days ago

thanks for the info. I have not worked with it before. I was expecting it to be similar to walnut.

-- Dean, Kinderhook, New York

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richgreer

4522 posts in 1708 days


#3 posted 1605 days ago

Butternut has been referred to by some as “white walnut”. In actual fact, it is not related to walnut at all and is quite different (much lighter).

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

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Jimthecarver

1121 posts in 2419 days


#4 posted 1604 days ago

I do know butternut makes for some very good carving wood.

-- Can't never could do anything, to try is to advance.

View SteviePete's profile

SteviePete

224 posts in 1937 days


#5 posted 1562 days ago

Butternut, Juglans cinerea, is in the walnut family (Juglans sp). It is the most beautiful dark, heavily grained wood, soft, superburb for carving. Defects include insect damage, branches and reaction wood and loss of sap wood on the dead portions of the tree.

I suggest: Start with a tuned plane—any gross amateur can plane full lenth, full width tight curls. Make them thinner and thinner. Whittle a small ball in cage—-2×2x4. Carve only with the grain. Use an alcohol spray to soften up the hard parts (evaporates w/o raising the grain). Use slicing strokes. If you break off a piece glue it back on with superglue.

Look at the work of Norsk Woodworks (Phillip Odden and Else Bigton), Fred Cogelow, Roger Strautman (LJ)—- all expert, all good teachers with an impressive body of work in butternut. Butternut is not long for this world…it is susceptable to canker. Little to none of the current production comes from live, non-infected trees. Trying to keep as many alive as long as we can. Folks on the Walnut Council and at the Forest Products Lab in Madison, Wisconsin are good resources for more information on butternut. In Wisconsin we still have some butternut on the hoof. I’ll be processing some ratty logs soon. PM me if you have a special piece in mind. Go Badgers. Visit ‘sconie, good butternut, good beer, good babes!

What have you done with the subject of this post? spj

-- Steve, 'Sconie Great White North

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a1Jim

112018 posts in 2211 days


#6 posted 1556 days ago

Now I know more about butternut thanks guys

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

11329 posts in 1739 days


#7 posted 1556 days ago

Okay, this may be a dumb questions but if a walnut tree actually has walnuts on it, does a butternut tree actually have butternuts on it??

I have never had any to work with.

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

View SteviePete's profile

SteviePete

224 posts in 1937 days


#8 posted 1555 days ago

Only the boy trees. (not true) Look here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juglans_cinerea

-- Steve, 'Sconie Great White North

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