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A cottonwood experiment

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Forum topic by Jack Lewis posted 06-02-2016 09:24 PM 806 views 0 times favorited 19 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Jack Lewis

78 posts in 538 days


06-02-2016 09:24 PM

A experimental chance with 10” cottonwood from the mill of Azwoody in Tool, AZ

-- "Now we are getting no where, thanks to me"


19 replies so far

View Nubsnstubs's profile

Nubsnstubs

825 posts in 1189 days


#1 posted 06-02-2016 09:44 PM

Hey Jack, that’s Roll, Arizona. It’s about as well known as Tool, Arizona, or even Fort Mohave, Arizona. Hehehe

That looks like a well executed piece. Was the wood dry? I’ve always heard that Cottonwood is stringy and fuzzy, but haven’t seen it yet on the stuff I have. thanks for posting it…... Jerry (in Tucson)

-- Jerry (in Tucson)

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ki7hy

493 posts in 199 days


#2 posted 06-02-2016 11:08 PM

Looks awesome!

View Jack Lewis's profile

Jack Lewis

78 posts in 538 days


#3 posted 06-02-2016 11:52 PM

Yeah! Roll, AZ, I always think I am wrong and then change it wrong anyway.
This was dry, cut easy but powdery and finished great with BLO wet sanding after sealer then French Polish, steel wool burnish and more Polish. Surface seems to harden as you work and sand it. I will be looking for some that isn’t quarter sawn to get more figure in next projects.

This pic was from a different board and has better figuring.

-- "Now we are getting no where, thanks to me"

View Madrona's profile

Madrona

14 posts in 354 days


#4 posted 06-03-2016 12:24 AM

Good to know! Very nice looking piece and I especially like your design. Great work!

-- Living In The Woods Of Beautiful Bonney Lake, Washington

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Jimbo4

1431 posts in 2222 days


#5 posted 06-03-2016 01:17 AM

Beautiful! Cottonwood – wow! The cottonwood I “scrounge” around ABQ sure don’t look anything like this – kinda whitesh with maybe some color.

-- BOVILEXIA: The urge to moo at cows from a moving vehicle.

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BurlyBob

3644 posts in 1725 days


#6 posted 06-03-2016 02:03 AM

Wow, now you got me thinking cottonwood. I’ve never seen it used for anything but landfill and trash fires.

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AZWoody

693 posts in 683 days


#7 posted 06-03-2016 03:16 AM



Wow, now you got me thinking cottonwood. I ve never seen it used for anything but landfill and trash fires.

- BurlyBob

It’s sad but in reality, most people have that thought about cottonwood. When I first came across a fallen tree, I was expecting something rather bland and plain but it has now become my favorite wood to mill.
It stinks to high heaven but it has some of the greatest grain and character I have ever seen. I’ve even come across some that has some birds eye in it. After doing research on it, it turns out it’s been used in barn building and pallets as well because it’s a light wood, but still hard.

What’s funny is Jack didn’t want any when I told him I had some but after seeing some planed boards I had, he started asking what it is and then he took a couple pieces and I’m glad he did. They turned out beautiful.

View Jack Lewis's profile

Jack Lewis

78 posts in 538 days


#8 posted 06-03-2016 04:35 AM



Beautiful! Cottonwood – wow! The cottonwood I “scrounge” around ABQ sure don t look anything like this – kinda whitesh with maybe some color.

- Jimbo4


Beautiful! Cottonwood – wow! The cottonwood I “scrounge” around ABQ sure don t look anything like this – kinda whitesh with maybe some color.

- Jimbo4


It stays whitish until I wipe the sanding dust with spirits which then shows the torn grain that needs TLC sanding. Then oil sand and finish.

-- "Now we are getting no where, thanks to me"

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

21981 posts in 1797 days


#9 posted 06-03-2016 11:37 AM

Once dried, cottonwood is is fine. Just need more patience. I have seen some beautiful pieces made of cottonwood. Around here it frequently has many curly patterns.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View Bruyet's profile

Bruyet

34 posts in 602 days


#10 posted 06-03-2016 12:20 PM


Wow, now you got me thinking cottonwood. I ve never seen it used for anything but landfill and trash fires.

- BurlyBob

It s sad but in reality, most people have that thought about cottonwood. When I first came across a fallen tree, I was expecting something rather bland and plain but it has now become my favorite wood to mill.
It stinks to high heaven but it has some of the greatest grain and character I have ever seen. I ve even come across some that has some birds eye in it. After doing research on it, it turns out it s been used in barn building and pallets as well because it s a light wood, but still hard.

What s funny is Jack didn t want any when I told him I had some but after seeing some planed boards I had, he started asking what it is and then he took a couple pieces and I m glad he did. They turned out beautiful.

- AZWoody

I love turning cottonwood. You are right about the stink. It smells like the south-end of a north-facing horse!

View mramseyISU's profile

mramseyISU

419 posts in 1005 days


#11 posted 06-03-2016 12:59 PM

I’ve made some drawers out of cottonwood. My grandpa used it as framing lumber building rental houses and when he was building additions to his sawmill. I wish I had a little more of it around.

-- Trust me I'm an engineer.

View Nubsnstubs's profile

Nubsnstubs

825 posts in 1189 days


#12 posted 06-03-2016 02:15 PM

I recently went up to Kirkland Junction, Arizona, expressly to collect a trailer load of Burled Cottonwood. The tree has been dead for years, but the wood is still good. The branch I wanted was about 18” OD, about 20” long loaded with burls. It crotched out at about 5” off the ground and was parallel to the ground. I figured I could cause it to break, hit the ground and I would be good to go with my “dead and down” wood collecting permit.

Well, the tree wasn’t going to let me get any of it. I was pushing on the branch at the end, and as it would swing back, I’d take a step back and push more. The back and forth motion from what I was doing was kooking like it would snap at any time, so I moved back a little more, had all my weight on my right leg, and pushed a little too early . The swing from the branch hadn’t reached it’s full backward motion when I pushed, and it put way too much pressure on my right knee that caused it to pop. Needless to say, my 4 day stay up there collecting wood ended in less than 24 hours.

I had to get home to rest and see a doctor. Turns out I just bruised my knee, but it’s giving me some issues. At 69 years old, I shouldn’t be doing crap I was doing when I was 25… It don’t like it used to.

Woody, you up for a road trip? There’s at least three branches up there at least 20 feet long full of Burls…......... Jerry (in Tucson)

-- Jerry (in Tucson)

View AZWoody's profile

AZWoody

693 posts in 683 days


#13 posted 06-03-2016 03:42 PM

Sounds interesting. I haven’t seen Herb at the Kirkland Steakhouse in a long time, haha.

Any good branches that are good to get lumber off of?

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Nubsnstubs

825 posts in 1189 days


#14 posted 06-04-2016 02:24 PM

I don’t know Herb, but the Steakhouse is still there.

I don’t see any lumber in the wood. All I see is turning blanks…...... Jerry (in Tucson)

-- Jerry (in Tucson)

View Jack Lewis's profile

Jack Lewis

78 posts in 538 days


#15 posted 06-04-2016 04:28 PM

Woody, save the burls for me! Haha. And some 12/4 blanks. You guys are forcing me to get a bigger lathe. Been thinking of Grizzly G0766 but had so much trouble with their G0462 variable speed I hesitate. Any pros and cons offered?
Last of the cottonwood untill I get back to Woody’s.

-- "Now we are getting no where, thanks to me"

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