re-using, recycling, and redeeming old wood

Posts tagged “hobbies

106 Rustic church on a Hill

How does you critique or evaluate a carving, especially your own? One thing to try is to ask questions. Another is to make observations. So, here is one of my pieces. First question, do the textures seen in this view work together?

A second question, do the colors compete or support each other?

One could also ask, is the flow or movement in the piece?

An observation is that the church seems to fit the piece of wood, neither too large or too small for it. If the rule is thirds, then the church is about one third, stairs one third, and rocks one third.

Another observation is to note the repeat of color, red steps and red in the windows, brown cross and trim, around the windows, and in wood work. Perhaps there could have been some yellow lower down or in and open window to tie in the roof.

For some reason the cross titled to the side seems to work. It adds some movement to the entire piece. What do you think?

I know it has been a while since posting, but as you can see, carving continues. Hope yours has too.

“The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures,

he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul.” Ps 23


Type of Wood: Zebra

There are many interesting types of wood with interesting names and characteristics. One that always

African zebrawood

catches my attention is zebra wood. Its characteristic stripe always draws my eye when I am reading books or magazines on wood or carving. It does not come off as the best carving wood, but for backgrounds or accents there is much to attract us to this wood.

Zebra wood is an “exotic.” Translate that into limited availability and expensive. It is also considered a “threatened” species, thought one article did speak of reforestation attempts in West African nations where it is most common.

Dramatic coloration attracts those who make furniture, veneer, paneling, arts and crafts, turnings and flooring. It is said to saw easily but to plane with difficulty. An added feature is that the wood smells, stinks when it is planed, like its name sake. The wood glues well. The finishing process must be done with care given the different densities in the striping. One characteristic a wood worker must take note of is the wood’s “shrink” factor. It tends to shrink a lot in the drying process.

Other sites for those interested in wood. “for Wood Lovers”
Musical Instrument Makers Forum: Potentially Toxic Wood

Psalm 139:14
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

How much can you chuck?

Is it carving?  No.  But carving is all about enjoying wood, friendships, relationships, a hobby of your choice, and all the good things people can share.  So, here’s a “would be fun” contribution to the world of carving.

How much wood would a woodchuck chuck, if a woodchuck could chuck wood?   A woodchuck would chuck all the wood he would chuck if a woodchuck could wood.

That is the classic answer I learned when I was young. Here are a few other answers you wood carvers might enjoy.

The amount of wood that woodchucks would chuck on a given day varies greatly with the individual woodchuck. According to a Wall Street Journal article, New York State wildlife expert Richard Thomas found that a woodchuck could chuck around 35 cubic feet of dirt in the course of digging a burrow. Thomas reasoned that if a woodchuck could chuck wood, he would chuck an amount equal to 700 pounds.
Some say it depends on three factors:

* The woodchuck’s desire to chuck said wood.

* The woodchuck’s need to chuck the aforementioned wood.

How much could an educated chuck chuck?

* The woodchuck’s ability to chuck the wood when it is a woodchuck

Others say:

* He would chuck, he would, as much as he could, if a woodchuck could chuck wood.
* If he could chuck wood, the woodchuck would chuck as much as he could!
* A woodchuck would chuck as much wood as a woodchuck could chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood.
* A woodchuck would chuck all the wood that the woodchuck would chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood.
* If a woodchuck could chuck wood, he would and should chuck wood. But if woodchucks can’t chuck wood, they shouldn’t and wouldn’t chuck wood. Though were I a woodchuck, and I chucked wood, I would chuck wood with the best woodchucks that chucked wood.
* If a woodchuck could chuck wood, then s/he’d chuck all the wood, s/he’d chuck and chuck and chuck and chuck, if a woodchuck could chuck wood.
* It would chuck the amount of wood that she sells seashells on the seashore divided by how many pickles Peter Piper picks.
* One quarter of a sycamore if you give him a quarter for every quarter of the sycamore he cut.
* It might depend on how many female woodchucks were present. Or, it could depend on whether the woodchuck’s mother-in-law was around or not. If she was, he’d be chucking all day. If not, he’d be watching the football game.
* Some maintain that woodchucks could not and would not chuck wood at all.
* It depends on how good his dentures are!
* A woodchuck – would chuck – as much wood – as a woodchuck – could chuck – if a woodchuck could chuck wood. But unfortunately, woodchucks do not chuck wood.
* About 5.72 fluid litres of wood (answer from the paper pulp mill).
* About as many boards as the Mongol hoards would hoard if the Mongol hordes did hoard boards.
* Um……. 23????
* Tons. More than you can count. Honestly. No one can chuck more wood than a woodchuck.
* If the woodchuck’s name was Maurice, then it could chuck all the wood that it wanted to. However, if its name is Frank, no chucking would be allowed.
* Due to the average size of a woodchuck and the general density of wood (not including cork) if a woodchuck could chuck wood it would probably get through about 6.573 pounds per day, assuming the woodchuck is functioning correctly.
* Using the formula: (W + I) * C where W = the constant of wood, which is well known to be 61, as agreed in many scientific circles. I = the variable in this equation, and stands for the word “if” from the original problem. As there are three circumstances, with 0 equaling the chance that the woodchuck cannot chuck wood, 1 being the theory that the woodchuck can chuck wood but chooses not to, and 2 standing for the probability that the woodchuck can and will chuck wood, we clearly must choose 2 for use in this equation. C = the constant of Chuck Norris, whose presence in any problem involving the word chuck must there, is well known to equal 1.1 of any known being, therefore the final part of this calculation is 1.1. As is clear, this appears to give the answer of (61 + 2) * 1.1 = (63) * 1.1 = 69.3 units of wood.
* “Sixteen and 1/2 board feet a day except on groundhog’s day since groundhog is another name for woodchuck.”- This answer is according to no less an authority than the ‘Junior Woodchucks Guidebook’, a publication often consulted by Huey, Dewey, and Louie Duck and referred to yet again by them in answering this very same question.
* How Chuck Norris got involved-A woodchuck would only chuck as much would as Chuck Norris would allow it to, because the woodchuck shares Chuck’s name. Therefore, Chuck must punish it and make it chuck as much wood as Chuck can. So, a woodchuck would chuck as much wood as Chuck could.
* None because a wood chuck cannot chuck wood! :P
* Approximately 3.9675 pounds every 5.6843 seconds. So there.


* 2.865 lbs every 11.3686 Seconds?
* As much as he needed to be satisfied
* But the true jokey answer, as told by my grandfather is: As much wood as a woodchuck could chuck, if a woodchuck could chuck wood.
* a woodchuck would chuck all the wood he could chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood
* Are you kidding? Everybody knows a woodchuck would chuck as much wood as a woodchuck could chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood.
* But it definitely couldn’t chuck Chuck Norris.
* A group of people actually did a study on this. None of the wood chucks ate any wood planks so they never upchucked it but some of them chucked them (threw them) at people.


* During my study of Woodchuck I came to the conclusion that woodchucks don’t chuck wood but only drink beer.
* However, this beer can frequently motivate them towards actions that can closely resemble the chucking of wood.
* A woodchuck will only chuck certain wood, likely that which is found in their natural, prairie habitat. Therefore, the lack of trees on the prairie is quite closely related to the chucking of wood performed by these wood-chucking woodchucks.
* Since it is the same animal as the Groundhog, should we not instead ask : how much ground would a groundhog hog if a groundhog would hog ground?


Sea Captain facing the storm. 8x4x2 Hand carved and painted. Wall hanging or stand alone.


#10 Want to know more about wood carving?

Does wood carving interest you? Are you fascinated by carve objects in the store or at the museum? Do you like wood, the feel, smell, look of good wood? Then you might want to check out the web site of Wood Carving Illustrated. It is one of the great resources available to the world’s wood carvers. I have placed the URL below.
This site has something for everyone. The galleries are filled with wonderful carvings by artists from around the world. Visitors can view the carvings, comment on them and even contact the artist via the site.
The chat threads provide all sorts of interesting and useful information. Beginners (newbies) can “listen in” on old hands discussing techniques and treatments. Long time carvers can share ideas and asked more detailed questions about the craft of carving.
One neat feature provided is the ability for carvers to take pictures of their work and to down load them on to the site for all to see. Artists can store albums of pictures which can be searched by all who visit the site.
One other feature anyone interested in carving might enjoy is are the teaching/training videos. These are great resources for the endless questions new and old carvers alike always have.
The Wood Carvers Illustrated web site is a social club on line. Many of the regulars have been chatting with each other for years. They meet each other on line and at shows around the country and the world. This site displays some of what makes the hobby of wood carving one of the best in the world, good people, eager to help, willing to share, a craft, an art,  anyone can enjoy.  Hope you enjoy the site as much as we do. Shalom.

“A gentle answer turns away wrath.” Proverbs 15:1


#9 Old World Santas

Persistence pays off.  Even got them into the Gift Shop.


#7 “A New Piece of Wood”

Beginning this blog is like beginning a new carving. One finds a piece of wood and wonders, what next. This blog is in place. The system works. A new screen pops up and…… All the excitement is there. All the interest in making something new happen. But in the back of your mind you have loads of questions. Beginner questions. What am I doing this for? How did I get this far? Now what? Will anything come of this? Is this another one of those hobbies that I have begun and will soon die? What if I cut myself? Will I be any good at this? I really don’t want anyone to see my work – I’ll never be as good as “Mel” or “Joe.” How do I know I have a good piece of wood? Do I have the right tool? “Mel” made it look so easy, will I get the hang of it? Where do I begin? What if I get stuck? What if I make a mistake?
The answer to many of those questions will only come through time and effort. My first blog answer is right here. I have no idea how to manage a blog. So, here is a first attempt. Is it right? Who is to say that my blog isn’t right? Could it be better? Yes, of course. No one has read it yet. It is just a new beginning. Rookies always make mistakes. But the rookies that remain rookies are the ones that never try, never pick up an new piece of wood or start a new blog entry. In blogging or wood carving “newbies” (the wood carving term for a rookie) too often fail to achieve success because they are unwilling to make mistakes from which they can learn.
This first blog entry, for example, may be a great mistake. I don’t even know if this is the right spot to enter blogs. I don’t know if it will enter. Will I have any good tags anyone will want to connect to? Can I “repair” or change what I send.
So here’s my first “cuts” in the world of blogging. And you, when will you pick up your first piece of wood and make your first cuts. Overcome the fears. Set aside the stifling questions. Find a knife, a book, a friend to encourage you, a quiet place to sit, and a comfortable spot where you can make a mess. Enjoy your beginnings in carving. My first blog, may it not be the last, has been interesting and exciting. Shalom.