Drying Bowl Blanks

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Forum topic by CSmithWoodturnings posted 10-06-2014 05:24 PM 837 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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24 posts in 755 days

10-06-2014 05:24 PM

Topic tags/keywords: bowls wood wood turning woodturning green lathe

Well, I’ve already posted one forum about microwaving, but I just came across an interesting video about steaming bowl blanks. As a woodturner, it takes a lot of patients to wait months for a project to dry and be completed, therefore I’m always trying to find the fastest, most efficient way to dry my roughed out bowls. I came across a few articles of some guys running tests on bowl blanks by boiling them. The results were that these blanks were dry a week after boiling them for 2-4 hours! About 5 minutes ago I saw a video of a company mass producing bowls and drying them by steaming for 4 hours. The bowls would be dry within a month! Does anyone have any experience with boiling or drying? Is there anyway to do this in an average joes workshop?

2 replies so far

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Rick M.

7671 posts in 1797 days

#1 posted 10-07-2014 04:26 AM

I have never tried boiling or steaming. Steaming, I’m told, can mess with the color but I have no personal experience in the matter. One common way to boil is set a tub of water on your grill or other outdoor fire.

Also just fyi, Lumberjocks is a “forum”. A forum may have sub-forums, like “Woodturning forum”. If you begin a discussion it’s called a “thread” or “topic”. So you post a thread, you cannot post a forum. Seen this popping up a lot lately and thought I would mention it.


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1848 posts in 1552 days

#2 posted 10-07-2014 09:34 PM

Normally would link an article over at woodturning online but they are no longer there. So here are couple articles:

I liked these articles until he got down to wanting to use Pentacryl. Not sure he ever got round to using the stuff.

There are no real guidelines written in stone to follow so lot of trial & error until gain experience. Even Steven admits no rules of thumb to follow.

Whether boil or soak wood in alcohol there is a learning curve and extra expense for supplies and equipment. Although boiling not to the same degree as soaking blanks in alcohol. Water in wood dilutes your alcohol over time. Just throw the water when done!

JMHO, best op for drying bowl blanks is a simple box kiln with light bulb and fan to keep air moving. This method also has a learning curve but once set up go too go! many turners have their llights & fan on a timer so cycles on and off autmatically. No, do not have one procrastination and space the only reason.

-- Bill

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