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Work in Progress - Spruce Burl Form

Part - 8 - outside details

It is the details of the outside of the piece that makes a burl like this one so special. This particular branch that goes up the side of the vessel lends a lot of character but also provides a turning challenge. The upper side of the branch as it appears in the picture has a weak bark inclusion combined with a sap pocket that is a very weak area which will make it difficult to remove the glue block later. woodturning project: detail challenges
It will also give a bit of difficulty to turning the lip as it is in effect separated from the rest of the turning. wood turning project: burl lip
However, light cuts with a freshly sharpened 3⁄16" Oland tool round over the lip and clean up a bit of the inside rim. I like to leave the inside with the tool marks from the turning but every one is different. woodworking lathe tool: delicate cuts
During the hollowing process as one comes closer to the edges of an inclusion such that an opening will be created, the edges will have material obviously less thick than that just before it. There tends to be enough support from surrounding material to allow the edges to be thin and not cut as they bend away from the tool. Hence there arises the question of what to do with these edges, leave them of trim them in some manner? Usually I trim them away to leave a more definite edge and outline. wood working lathe: design decision
After trimming the hole looks larger and better defined. wodturning: burl design consideration
A set or two of small files and rifflers works well for this sort of thing. For this piece I used the one on the right with the wooden handle but use whatever is good for you. wodturning: burl design consideration
It also gives a greater contrast with the varied grain of the burl. Depending on how the light is hitting the piece, there will be an even greater contrast with the inside of the vessel as seen through the hole in the body. woodworking technique: maintaining contrast

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