Thursday, January 15, 2015

There's gold, or at least burls, in them there trees.

A wood cutting friend had to drop a dead spruce for a customer. There are over 20 burls in this pile, various shapes and sizes. The largest look to be about 14 or 16 inches. There should be some great grain in these and an amazing amount of fun. I have got to get the shop cleaned and start turning some of this beautiful wood.

Spruce burls are our most common ones in Nova Scotia, I think. Some times I have taken over 30 burls from one tree. My family have grown Christmas trees since forever, it seems, and there is always a spruce in the way of the balsam fir. Balsam fir are beautiful Christmas trees, spruce are not. The needles are too sharp if you have children, the needles drop quickly after cutting, especially indoors, and the smell is not anywhere close to a balsam fir. 

On the other hand, spruce sometimes burl amazingly and they are great lumber trees. Look for the burls off of limbs in particular. The largest burls are usually found around the trunk, but they will generally have less grain movement than the ones around the limbs. They should be very good for pyrography though. Maybe I will try one.

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