Kuksa Carving Tips (from tree to finished kuksa)

Discussion in 'T's Custom Outdoor Gear' started by T. Pollock, May 3, 2017.

  1. T. Pollock

    T. Pollock T's Custom Outdoor Gear Vendor Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    Thanks brothers!
     
  2. T. Pollock

    T. Pollock T's Custom Outdoor Gear Vendor Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    A little update to the tutorial on orientation.

    In post #3 I covered the two different orientations from which a kuksa/bowl can be taken from a log, my preference and the reasons why. I like the grain pattern that results from doing them in the top to bark orientation much better than I do top to pith. So the last dozen or so bowls/kuksa I've done I oriented that way to give it another try. Every single one checked or cracked! I still can not scientifically explain it (wish I could). As much as I like that grain pattern it's not worth it if the piece cracks and you loose all the hard work you've put into the piece. I'm always trying different methods etc. that's the way you learn and improve but I have proven well enough "at least for myself" that for a kuksa top to the pith orientation is the only way to go. Also, the tighter the radius (smaller the log) the more likely it is to crack.

    I wish I could explain the reasons why for you guys, all I know is from lots of experience what works and what doesn't for me.

    T-Man-Do :)
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2018
  3. WildMedGuru

    WildMedGuru Scout

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    could you provide a photo to further illustrate "top to pith", I think I get your point, but a photo may help the group as well.
     
  4. T. Pollock

    T. Pollock T's Custom Outdoor Gear Vendor Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    Sure, just like the photos in post #3 only instead of bowls as it shows in that photo it would be a kuksa.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2018
  5. T. Pollock

    T. Pollock T's Custom Outdoor Gear Vendor Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    Here's the two photos from post #3 showing/explaining the two orientations (top to bark or top to pith) and the resulting grain patterns.

    [​IMG][​IMG]
     
  6. T. Pollock

    T. Pollock T's Custom Outdoor Gear Vendor Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    And here's one with notations to make it more clear/better explain.
    Sorry for my struggle at times to find the right words to say what I mean.

    Top To Bark or Top To Pith Orientation.jpg
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2018
  7. Jmanworks

    Jmanworks Tinder Gatherer

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    You can't imagine how much I appreciate this post...I just need more free time to get after it !
     
  8. T. Pollock

    T. Pollock T's Custom Outdoor Gear Vendor Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    You're very welcome brother!
     
  9. Bobsdock

    Bobsdock Still going Supporter

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    Quinlan, Hoof, T. Pollock and 2 others like this.
  10. T. Pollock

    T. Pollock T's Custom Outdoor Gear Vendor Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    You're very welcome brother! Glad it was some help to you.
     
  11. T. Pollock

    T. Pollock T's Custom Outdoor Gear Vendor Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    Due to having severe carpal tunnel and being too stubborn to have surgery, I as most of you know I do the biggest part of mine on the lathe. Only the outside is finish carved by hand to give them the tooled finish.

    Still I thought some of you might enjoy seeing these photos of one in the works from the perspective of doing one on a lathe.

    Outside after being turned.
    IMG_6646.JPG
    Reverse chucked to start hollowing the inside.
    IMG_6648.JPG
    A hole has been drilled in the center as a depth guide so I know how deep to go, making sure I don't get the bottom any thinner than the sides.
    IMG_6649.JPG
    Carefully checking the wall thickness with a set of calipers. As mentioned earlier in the thread maintaining a consistent wall thickness is crucial to making sure they don't crack from uneven drying.
    IMG_6651.JPG

    Filled to the rim with 100% pure Tung Oil.
    IMG_6654.JPG
    In these next two photos you can see how the Tung Oil has wept from the inside out through the end grain insuring that the open pores of the end grain are completely sealed with Tung Oil.
    IMG_6656.JPG
    The end grain is where wood loses moisture the fastest and where a kuksa will crack 9 times out of 10 if not sealed properly.
    IMG_6658.JPG
     
  12. 1066vik

    1066vik Guide

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    this one's river birch - from the tree you and @Broke cut down.
    [​IMG]
     
  13. T. Pollock

    T. Pollock T's Custom Outdoor Gear Vendor Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    Awesome, that looks great brother!

    It tickles me to see photos of things made from trees I personally harvested being used all across the US and occasionally across the pond... I love it! :dblthumb:

    PS. @Broke is a chainsaw running machine and a super good dude! There's probably photos of that tree being harvested or milled up here somewhere in the Dirt Time In TN meetup threads.
     

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