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Swan Chisels


Tips from Old Millrat - James D. Thompson


Abstract Form

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When life gives you lemons, make lemonade!  This burl exploded while being turned.  I got tired of trying to make chicken salad out of chicken sh*t, so I decided that rather than repairing it, I would make it look like something was growing out of it.  I am applying heavy coats of shellac, and then heating them with a heat gun.  This causes a mottling of the surface, and hopefully it will look old when I am done.

When I can't see any other way to save a piece, I turn it into something abstract.

The walls of this turning were pretty thick when it exploded, so I had depth to do a little carving.

This is the frontal view.  I carved some pods similar to the natural ones that are glued into the top.  I also did a considerable amount of texturing.  The non-show side is finished with garnet shellac.  I applied the shellac quite thick, then heated it with a heat gun until it appeared to boil. This gives the appearance of texturing, without all the work.

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Folding Rule


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