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paul wheaton wrote:Raven,

Keep shaving it down a bit.  You're almost there!



thanks.

I'll keep working on it.
 
r ranson
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a somewhat less ugly spoon.  

sorry, the lighting is really bad.  
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Staff note (paul wheaton):

I certify that this BB is complete!

 
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I hit the soft center when carving mine, too. I also got a crack in the wood. I had to keep carving down to rid myself of those areas.

It's HARD making a spoon from a smaller piece of wood. The bowl is hard to fit even the special carving knife in. I think if we had a larger pieces of wood, we wouldn't have encountered these problems. I also realized that a deep bowl on a spoon isn't probably too useful unless one is making a ladle. You could probably carve the rim of the spoon's bowl so it no longer has the squishy center, and then it'd match the handle better too, maybe?

Finding good wood is hard. I've learned that holly is so dense that it doesn't have a soft center, even on tiny twigs. That's why I use it to make little fairy swords and staves. Willow is probably not as dense and so has a larger, softer center than apple wood. I'm wondering if some of the best carving woods are also those with the most BTUs when burning?

I'm thinking you've got the technique and skills down, and the next spoon you carve will be amazing. I'm already eying my next piece of wood to make a spoon with!
 
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A bigger spoon would have been much easier, especially since I don't have a curved knife.  

I have a kitchen spoon I love - but everyone else in the house loves it.  I might try to make something that size out of big leaf maple.  That's supposed to be less stringy but still easy to carve.  
 
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There is no spoon ... so let's make one ;)

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A piece of freshly cut Linden branch (frozen).
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Kinda tricky without round knife.
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Tools used.
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Spoon is no longer frozen, it is wet now ... I have decided to dry it first, then polish some more.
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There is a spoon - side view.
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Don't try to sand green wood.   Once you have it pretty well shaped with knives, then you let it dry and you can sand it then.



Or avoid excess sanding (and the dust produced) by using your whittling knife at an angle that scrapes rather than cuts, scraping with the grain not against.

There are curved steel scrapers sold for such things and I know some careful souls who use a stout piece of glass.

Nicole, bandaids are an integral part of woodworking

Once the spoon is carved and you are ready to sand, soaking to raise the grain first will give a long lasting smooth finish for the life of the spoon.
 
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I finished this spoon last night.  Jocelyn is upset about the quantity of wood shavings in my office.   :)

Thanks to jocelyn for taking a lot of these pics.

I decided to make another serviceberry spoon.


Jocelyn and I hunted down this wild serviceberry shrub.  Here you can see the kill in the field.




We carried it home and I harvested the best piece for a spoon




splitting the piece into two "blanks" for spoon carving




take off some bark and start narrowing the handle ...  




narrow the handle a bit more




getting pretty close:




I can't think of anything else to fiddle with, so I suppose I now wait for it to dry

Staff note (Nicole Alderman):

I'm totally not Paul, but I say he has this BB complete

 
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I should add that I wore leather gloves during this.  And one of the gloves took a pretty nasty cut - but my hands were unscarred.



 
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I decided to carve a spoon before seeing this thread... and now here we all are! Must be the permie zeitgeist.

Here's mine: https://www.instagram.com/p/BsnlpbVlVK2/

I cheated on the bowl and used my Dremel after cutting my hand in the exact same spot as Nicole. BLOOD BROTHERS NOW!

That wood is beach hibiscus, which carves easily and it pretty strong but tends to be a bit thready.

After working on that one, and then losing it when the children cleaned the porch, I tried to go all by hand last weekend at the beach, carving a piece of seagrape wood. That didn't work out, as I had the same problem as Raven. It was invisible until I started carving, but sea grape also has pith through the middle. My piece of wood was looking very nice... and then I hit a very soft core and found out it was worthless for a spoon.

I'll try, try again. I'm using a Mora knife that Marjory Wildcraft sent me as a gift. It holds a very nice edge, but I think a blade with zero curve would do even better.

I also found my first spoon again and am going to work on it some more.

Great project.
 
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