Burlwood Rocking Chair Examples

      Check out two beautiful rockers and the "before" picture of the sawn burls they were made from. May 31, 2010

Question
I would like to cut this ash burl into a couple Luthier blanks. I have never done this. I do have access to a bandmill. Should we cut parallel to the trunk sticking out of the ends, or perpendicular to the log ends? I was thinking cutting two inch slabs that were parallel to the log that the burl is surrounding. The burl is 22" in diameter, and is 24" long. The bark on it is swirly in nature. This is from a green ash tree.


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Forum Responses
(Sawing and Drying Forum)
From contributor K:
The checking is a huge risk. I do not know a way to around it - vacuum dehydration? Wax and seal that baby up and learn as much as you can. I milled some ash slabs. They warped twisted and cracked - ouch! I was just experimenting/learning. Most of it is junk. I would leave it thick so you can cut away the warp/twist. Dry very slow (sealed) and cross your fingers.



From contributor O:
I dried a big burl in one of my vac kilns a couple years ago. It was pretty slow. It took almost a month. It was cut parallel to the trunk and not perpendicular.


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From contributor O:
The burl in my previous post was amboyna. This is what it looked like when finished.


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From contributor C:
Very impressive wow.


From contributor D:
Here is another picture.


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From contributor T:
Burls can be a bear, and they are also a gamble. Cut parallel to the trunk is good advice. End sealing is necessary. Perhaps some overall coating is called for. You never know what's inside until you start sawing - that's the gamble. I have found plenty of rot and bark inclusions, but sometimes you get lucky.



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