Back in January 2016 I rough green turned a large Persimmon blank and I wrote extensively about the wood and the process at that time. Now, in February 2017, I have returned to that piece for the final turning and finishing.
I was concerned about how the piece would turn out because it had a fair amount of spalting to start with, but it seems to have held up just fine. There were no cracks, or checks, to be seen and the piece was able to go back on to the Nova Chuck with no problems despite being slightly distorted and warped during the drying process, which was expected.
In several previous posts I have described the process by which I approached green turning, sealing with Anchor Seal, weighing, and drying these rough turned blanks, so I won’t repeat it here as the process was the same for Bradford Pear, Sycamore, and Persimmon (Bocote too, which is coming up next week!).
One thing that was most unique about this piece was the band of incredibly tough and fibrous material that ran completely through the blank and which was difficult to but while green.
It remained difficult to cut and finish once dry and I am still curious as to what anatomical or growth characteristic caused such an inclusion.
If anyone has any ideas I would love to hear them. It looked and acted as though it was root fiber and I have to wonder if perhaps a blank this large was cut from close to the root and some such material was incorporated into the trunk. That’s just me randomly speculating as I don’t even know if that is possible.
Overall I was very pleased with the final outcome of this piece, one of the largest turnings I have made to date.
I think the Persimmon wood is beautiful to both the touch and the eye with the unique dark stippling through the lighter material, enhanced by the mysterious fibrous inclusion. The spalting also adds some interest even though I am not a huge fan of working with spalted wood because it tends to cut rough and be punky at best. However, Persimmon seems to decay quite easily and I don’t know how possible it would be to obtain Persimmon that didn’t have some degree of spalt as all the many pieces I have seem to have some degree of it present.
I intend to start a large green turning project featuring Persimmon, with about 14 or more pieces up for turning and sealing and I will be sure to post at least a photo once the rough turning is completed.
As always, I wish all my readers a great experience in whatever their wood working interests happen to be and to those who like working with lathes especially, do a good turn today!