Walking Stick Forum banner
1 - 3 of 3 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
969 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Another one, nearly finished. Its sassafras, 53" long, only weighs about 1 pound. Altho' its quite stiff for something so thin and light, I wouldn't carry it for anything but keeping balance.

The notion behind the carving is that it was to suggest a stream of water flowing over and around rocks. The "rocks" are where the knots were, carved out and plugged w. bits of yew heartwood. Sanded to 600 grit. The finish is a light coat of Trans Tint golden brown, followed by 3 coats of Hut Crystal Coat carnauba based finish. May add another coat of that, and do one more round of buffing.

I was hoping to get more "chatoyancey" from the grain. I did get a little, but I suspect the wood grain is too open to get the kind of sheen I wanted. I did try covering the entire surface w. some stainable wood filler, but found that I couldn't get it into the pores. Spent a week sanding it off, sigh. Next time, I'll try the classic method of rubbing in rotten stone.

I did compare it to a stick I did about 18 months ago. Better color and finish, so while I didn't manage to get quite what I had in mind, I've made a few steps forward.

Plant Water Nature Tree Grass
Plant Tree Automotive tire Wood Grass
Eye Carnivore Fawn Wood Terrestrial animal
Hand Arm Leg Human body Wood
Wood Plant Human leg Wood stain Hardwood
Human body Wood Fawn Sculpture Felidae
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
969 Posts
"Chatoyancey" was a new one for me, too. Its an English version of a French term for "like a cat's eye," specifically, for the shimmering quality that certain semi-precious gem stones display when turned in different directions. The word is sometimes used in wood working. I came across the word while reading about an old technique called "French polish." Based on some reading I've done in the past few days, I think I may have been mistaken in thinking that any well smoothed and waxed piece of wood will show the effect.

I did give another coat of the carnauba finish to a portion of the stick. The luster became even more pronounced, but does not have much of the shifting effect. That is only present in portions of the stick where the bends are most pronounced, and the grain is sort of crinkled.

As I was told when I was a teenager, "rotten stone" is a form of pumice. I was surprised, because the only pumice I knew of was the gritty stuff in Lava brand soap. What I came across was almost dust, just a grey powder. It has a small amount of abrasive strength, but my recent reading says it is used to seal wood pores. Being a silicate, it doesn't change size w. humidity. The powder is so fine that when wax is rubbed over, the wood surface can become glassy smooth.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
969 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
No worries about a hi-jack. Altho' I've certainly seen a lot of chatoyant wood, even made some myself by happenstance, this is the first project where I learned the word, and read about French polish. Glad for the additional info.

Took a look at the Follessbee article. Yes, one does not see logs of that thickness much any more. Just after college, I was working in a barn demolition crew that was trying to salvage old wood. Helped take apart a few that dated to around 1850. One was astonishing. The main floor appeared to be sycamore, planks about 24" wide, 20' long and more than 2" thick. As I recall, the biggest beam we retrieved was oak, 15" on a side, and about 30' long.
 
1 - 3 of 3 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top