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Thread: Raw wood to handle input

  1. #21

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    As JB said, black cherry wood smells great. When you cut off the "under bark" it smells amazing.
    As far as an ID, a close up of the bark on a smaller branch and a leaf would make life easier.

  2. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Agent_H View Post
    I hate to enlist you guys to ID wood but would closer pics help?

    Also, I'm ok if it isn't handle worthy - thought it was fortuitous to be right here.
    I studied a fair bit of botany and spent a few summers in provincial parks doing vegetation inventories when I was young(er) -- I rather enjoy dusting off the old skills and seeing what I still remember.

    More pics always help. Close ups are good but whole tree shots can sometimes be really useful too since general form can be distinctive for some species.

  3. #23
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    You posted a good enough picture before in the other thread. Perhaps some of these other gentlemen missed it.





    That's clearly cherry.

    I posted a picture from the web of wild cherry. This is the kind of thing I see here in the NW, though I didn't personally take this photo.



    I'm confident that you have a variety of wild cherry there. Maybe choke cherry or bitter cherry. But it's a cherry.

  4. #24
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    Leaf and flower pictures later in the Spring will confirm exactly what this is.

  5. #25
    I think it may be sweet birch. Also known as cherry birch or black birch. I could be wrong.

  6. #26
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    I walked down there just now and only found two others that might be the same tree but the moss runs so high I can't say for sure. No leaves right now but as you are saying, spring is near.

    Lots of alder, what I think is cotton wood and cedar. Lots of large ferns deeper in on the floor. None of it looks like the one I have.

    Here is the new growth from the top sitting on the stump:








    Walking in:


  7. #27
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    Most of the cherry around here amounts to little more than saplings until a little north of me and I haven't liberated any of the bigger stuff. We do have water birch though and that is a fairly close match. But my experience with the water birch is it grows twisted and splits like a cork screw. I can't see the twist through that bark either. Must be Cherry. Burn a sliver.

  8. #28
    The colors in those stump pictures look amazing. It would make some great looking knife scales with the black streaks.

  9. #29
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    Sweet birch is an east coast tree. Might be similar, I'm not familiar with it. But this bitter cherry is common here on the west coast. Trees can grow to 45 feet. When it leaves and flowers compare it to this.

    http://nativeplantspnw.com/bitter-ch...us-emarginata/

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by osage outlaw View Post
    The colors in those stump pictures look amazing. It would make some great looking knife scales with the black streaks.
    I've got some that's almost rainbow colored.

  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Square_peg View Post
    Sweet birch is an east coast tree. Might be similar, I'm not familiar with it. But this bitter cherry is common here on the west coast. Trees can grow to 45 feet. When it leaves and flowers compare it to this.

    http://nativeplantspnw.com/bitter-ch...us-emarginata/
    We have that here but it grows on or below rocky talus slopes forming dense thickets maybe ten or twelve foot tall max. In central Idaho it turns into a real tree.

    This is Water Birch https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Betula_occidentalis . Apparently it hybridizes with Paper Birch, and maybe others? I don't know. But that might be why you have not seen it. And that map for the range of Water Birch in that link I don't believe to be all that accurate.

  12. #32
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    Yes, and pics of the end grain would help, if you can get leaf pics they are the best. What does it smell like when you cut it? Bark is telling me cherry.

  13. #33
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    Agent_H This looks to be similar to what is called Pin Cherry out this way. These never grow very big (8 inch diameter tops) nor are reliably knot-free-straight but they are bona fide hard fruitwoods, and should to be quite useful for tool handles. Commerce has always relied on large and/or common trees but that doesn't mean outliers and oddballs aren't worthy of consideration. Rock Elm, Hop Hornbeam and Blue Beech are 'orphans' in the north east lumber industry but have been actively searched out for hundreds of years by trades people that know exactly what they want. This 'standing tree-to-haft' experiment of yours is worthy of attention and hopefully bears fruit.

  14. #34
    If that were in the east/southeast, I'd say it was black cherry (Prunis serotina). It looks like it occurs in Washington, so you may have it on Oregon too. if you peel a small twig and it has a nasty odor, it may very well be black cherry.

  15. #35
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    I'm out here removing ends of the quarters a little past any visible cracks/stress splits.



    Assuming it's some kind of Cherry,

    Do I want to keep the heartwood and sapwood or just one or the other for attempting a handle?

    What does a good stave look like before painting the ends and storing/curing?

    It does smell good but it's competing with cedar

  16. #36
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    Don't be in a hurry! Air drying rule of thumb in the bone dry winter climate over this way is 1 inch thickness per year and seems to me where you are is much more humid, judging by the mosses and lichens decorating tree trunks in your outdoor shots.

  17. #37
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    I wouldn't let any sapwood into a handle with cherry, it's considerably softer. From what I've been told, the issue with sapwood inclusion is perhaps moreso that there is a tendency for a split to develop where the sapwood and heartwood meet.

  18. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by 300Six View Post
    Don't be in a hurry! Air drying rule of thumb in the bone dry winter climate over this way is 1 inch thickness per year and seems to me where you are is much more humid, judging by the mosses and lichens decorating tree trunks in your outdoor shots.
    Thanks for the tip 300six. It will be a good while before it is dry. I had several hours to work on stuff this weekend and was looking to get it as prepped as I can while it is still green. I also want to reclaim the space itís taking up. Itís all trimmed clean below any visible cracks and debarked.

    Quote Originally Posted by Park Swan View Post
    I wouldn't let any sapwood into a handle with cherry, it's considerably softer. From what I've been told, the issue with sapwood inclusion is perhaps moreso that there is a tendency for a split to develop where the sapwood and heartwood meet.
    Good to know, thank you Park Swan. I stripped a couple of the pieces down to the heartwood. I think the half round pieces and a couple of the larger quarters are my best bet if I am after heartwood only. Here is an example of a smaller piece stripped down.




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