Preparing green wood for turning – part 1

Originally posted 10 November 2013

I was recently offered some wood from a tree that was freshly cut. There have been a number of questions about what I do when I get the wood home.  Here is what happens. In the photo below the two logs have been unloaded out of my pickup and carted back to my shed on the two wheel cart you see here.

I have three chainsaws that I can use to process logs – the electric one shown here is nowhere nealry large enough to process this wood, so we will use the Stihl instead.


Before we can properly process the wood we need to measure it out. This piece is a little over 16 inches across at the widest point.

And this first piece is about 23 inches long.

The other piece is about 29 inches long.

I didn’t take pictures of the process, but I cut the shorter piece into three slices, one from each side and the pith is removed from the center of the log. We’ll trim those pieces up later.

The longer piece I decided to treat a little differently.  I cut it in two.  The piece of bark lying across the log is an easy way to mark where to make the cut.

I found a little bit of a surprise when I cut it in two. There is a significant void through the enter of the log.

So I decided to see if I could divide it with the splitting maul.

The first piece split with one good hit.

The second piece took four or five hits before it gave way. I then used the chain saw to cut off those zig-zag edges to flatten them out.

I trimmed the ends off the pieces I cut off the sides of the shorter log.

So when all is said and done, I end up with 5 bowl blanks and a few other odds and ends that we will be able to do something with.

We’ll close this segment with a picture of the scene of the crime – notice all the chain saw shavings on the ground.