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stuckinthemud

which timbers?

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I was offered some oak, 'fir', ash and leylandi over the last few weeks.  For one reason or another, the offers all fell through, but it made me realise I have no idea what timbers are good for chainsaw carving and which ones shouldn't be touched with a long pole.  What do you guys prefer to work with, and what would you never use?

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Oak, sweet chestnut, cedar, cypress, leylandii, redwood are my preferred woods, all very durable. Add to that elm, not so durable.
Avoid willow and poplar, both very woolly and prone to rot quickly

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durable species that grow in the UK include, 

 

 

the uk has no class 1 durable timbers.

 

 

class 2 timbers include,

 

anything in the cedrus genus.

anything in the larix genus (can also be class 3)

taxus

robinia

gleditsia

quercus robur (and other durable oaks)

sweet chestnut

 

class 3 timbers are,

 

douglas fir

walnut

wester red cedar

cherry

 

 

 

typically any species in the cypress family is good and eucalyptus also does quite well. i'm also happy to leave laburnum, catalpa and ailanthus outside till i convert it as they seem to do ok...

 

most others are not worth it.

 

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I've recently had some Tulip milled as an experiment and have been breaking rings for firewood.  The firewood will be slyly mixed into the main pile as the stuff dries to balsawood - rather like willow.  I'm thus a tad nervous about how the boards will fare but hey, every day's a school day!  I do hope though that the guy who wants some when dry for making a guitar won't be disappointed.

 

I would thus assume that a lump of Tulip chainsaw carved will crack to buggery if left indoors or crack and rot if left outdoors.

 

If you remember that Liriodendron is a single species genus of the Magnolia family you'll get the idea.

 

Perhaps Steve the devil will have more to say on the matter; he knows his timbers so put faith in his words.

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