Hello, I just found you gals through rockler flyer at the store. I've been scrolling for awhile now, off and on. Working on my first intarsia project and would love to test the water on furniture. My two passions are wood and parrots. Not your typical female.
Where I live our majority of trees are juniper and I was thinking about cutting a limb and cutting 1/4 chunks thick to scroll on. Of course if I cut it down, the branch will be "wet" wood. Would you let the whole branch cure or would you cut the 1/4inch sections and then let it cure??
I have no experience with juniper, but I have some with wet wood. Cut your wood at least 3/8" to allow for shrinkage. You should also keep in mind that working with limb wood is different than from a trunk. The tension from the top of the limb to the bottom is much different, but I can not see a problem with the small sizes you are going to be working with.
You can also try drying (test first) in a microwave. A friend of mine, a wood turner. Turned a bowel out of wet wood and set it in the microwave, he had done this many times with no problems. However this time he was useing a differnt kind of wood and he torched his bowel, he said he overdired and turned his bubinga bowel to an ash bowel.
lynette, hello and welcome to the group. There are several web site that give you very good info on the various wood, but I haven't found one that has movement info. There are a couple of very good (but expensive) books that can give a referance.
The Forest Service has a web site where they publish info that most of us will never understand [img]i/expressions/face-icon-small-confused.gif[/img] but they will answer most any question you send them.
Hope this helps
JohnP (one of the gals)
Branch wood presents some different characteristics than trunk wood. Cut a length of branch so you can see the end grain. You will notice the pith (the very center of the tree) is NOT in the center of the branch. That is because the strength to hold up the branch needs to be below the center. Makes sense, huh?
Orient your wood so the pith is at 12 o'clock. Band sand the branch in two lengthwise slicing right through the pith from end to end. If you are in an area with juniper, your climate would be warm and dry? I am an Arizonan so I am familiar with juniper but have never worked it. At this point I'd let the wood dry by itself for a month or so. You might weigh it first. Digital scales work well. Weigh it each week and record the weights. When the weigh loss tapers off, flatten the bandsawn face and saw into 'planks', maybe 5/16" thick.
Sticker your little 'planks.' Weight them down and repeat the drying process above.
You could wind up with some relative flat and stable boards. Then thickness plane or sand them and scroll away! The grain will be oriented to quarter/riff sawn. That is a good thing for stability.
There is an alternative method that turners use for chucks of wood. Since you are a scroller, you can make use of short pieces of wood. Cut the branch in lengthes that will fit in a container where they can be completely submerged. Cut them lengthwise as above. Weigh them. Soak them in denatured alcohol, weighing them every couple of days. The alcohol replaces the water in the wood. And alcohol evaporates quickly. So the wood will dry quickly when removed from the alcohol bath.
There is much more on Dave Smith's web site about alcohol drying. Google away, if you are interested. BTW, Dave is a friend of mine, so I know he isn't blowing smoke with his theory. He and his friends all across the world have used this technique with excellent results.
Can I assume you live in the southwest where most of the trees are juniper?
If you live near a town, one excellent source of fresh wood is from tree surgeons. There are many nice hardwood trees in southwestern cities. When they are cut down, they usually just go to a landfill.
I am primarily a woodturner and a web surfer. While surfing, I ran across this bit of information, actually a lot of information about conditioning green wood for turning. I think it might be useful to you.
I am a turner but I am also a sawyer and have been since 1985. The first thing I want to caution you about is trying to run round wood through your bandsaw without using a sled or some other way to secure it. You need a flat stable base otherwise you can get hurt or at least ruin a band. There have been many plans for making a sled so that you can cut your own wood on a bandsaw.
A log is best sawn green. If you are interested in how I would saw one, let me know and I will post.