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"Seasoning" Liquidambar

1794 Views 1 Reply 2 Participants Last post by  AAAndrew
Got a real nice branch of liquidambar a few weeks ago, but Wikipedia says it's difficult to season. I'm not exactly clear on what that means.

The branch came from a dead tree, but it's still pretty heavy, so I'm assuming it's still somewhat green. I cut it extra long and plan on trimming it later. Only now I'm worried about what seasoning means. Does that mean it's likely to bend or warp? Or is it likely to crack? Also, should I leave on the bark?
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There's less concern with warping and twisting when dealing with saplings and walking sticks than when you're trying to work with squared lumber. The main concern for what we do is cracking, or checking, as it is often called in woodworking.

I thought I knew nothing about liquid amber until I just discovered that that's another name for what we call Sweet Gum. Sweet Gum is an early species that grows on forest edges and new clearings. It tends to propagate by roots as well as seeds. If you once have a sweet gum stump that's still living, you can cut down the trees continuously as they sprout up year after year.

I've heard that it would make a fine stick, and I have one I just harvested this summer. We'll both try and see what works. I took the bark off and it's seasoning in my attic. I'm hoping that it works fine for sticks because they're almost as plentiful as loblolly pines around here.

More info that does say it tends to warp and twist greatly during initial drying. But like I said, we're not cutting the wood into square shapes, so twist and warp, as long as we don't end up with a boomerang, shouldn't be much of a problem for us.

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