I got an itch to play with wood.

Smoke

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Cherry Wood. 40 board feet of it.

Stay tuned for further additions as I chronicle the development of four bonsai Shoku for this years second annual Toko-Kazari, April 17 and 18 at The Clark center for Japanese Art in Hanford California.

Each Shoku will compliment the trees for which they are designed.
 

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Smoke

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Today I spent cutting and sorting boards for tops. Each top will be the same size. It just so happens that each of the trees I repotted so far this year requires the same size shoku. This is good for many reasons the best being that they will be interchangeable depending on mood and season.

The center board will be 16" x 22" giving me a top 20" x 26".
 

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garywood

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Hi Al, Love that Cherry wood. What's going on them? Stain, Oil? What kind of trees? What kind of styles?
Wood
 

Smoke

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Well Gary...I have a plan for one of them. It is wayyy out there. I may take a beating for it, but I have to do it. It has never been done before and I am really excited about trying it. I think it will be something that may be very desirable or they may run me out of bonsaiville on a rail.

You'll have to wait for that though, It won't take long though.

as for trees... One is for the recently repotted California juniper, one is for my trident maple that I bought a new pot for two years ago and have not been able to exhibit becasue the stand was too small. One tree is the monster myrtle that will require a really beefy stand to match the power of it's trunk. The last table will be for my double trunk Pyracantha. I bought a new Korean pot for it this year which is 25 percent larger than the pot it has been in for the last three years. I need to develop the lower branches and so need more volume to get it going. I also think it just needs a larger pot.
 
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Smoke

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Finish will most likely be dye. It is an alcohol based premanent dye that really saturates the wood very deep.Even if you scratch it the colored wood will show rather than raw wood. After that they will be finished with Tung oil.
 
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Al, when I saw the title, I thought Harry had escaped the Karaoke board! Glad to see it's a good stand thread, instead. ;)
 

garywood

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Hey Chris, when I first saw it, I thought Al was getting personal :D

Wood
 

chansen

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Today I spent cutting and sorting boards for tops. Each top will be the same size. It just so happens that each of the trees I repotted so far this year requires the same size shoku. This is good for many reasons the best being that they will be interchangeable depending on mood and season.

The center board will be 16" x 22" giving me a top 20" x 26".
Al -

As a complete rookie in this area, what do you look for in the wood you use for the top?
 

greerhw

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I think in my best interests, I will leave the title alone and see what BigAl is up too.....;)

keep it green,
Harry
 

Smoke

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I think in my best interests, I will leave the title alone and see what BigAl is up too.....;)

keep it green,
Harry
I can tell you what I'm up to...my target weight for a man 9 foot tall!:eek:
 

Smoke

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Al -

As a complete rookie in this area, what do you look for in the wood you use for the top?
Well since cherry trees don't grow too large, or at least what they chop down now is small, I have to look for like boards. This is a problem with cherry because the grain varies so much. I try to match grain patterens as much as possible. This load of wood has a lot of borer holes in it so culling out the holes was a problem. Some of the holes will show in the final product and I like a little variation in the top so as to retain a modecum of naturalness. I don't want it pristine so to speak. There are some small knots and imperfections which I retain. I keep imperfections away from edges and places where router work could pose a problem.

Finally I just look for good grain patterns that will show up thru the finish and give me some depth and looks. Cherry does this really well, black walnut not so much. Pretty uninteresting, but beautiful in different ways.

As I get to the finish portion of these projects the Cherry will make more sense. This is going to be good!
 

Vance Wood

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Finish will most likely be dye. It is an alcohol based premanent dye that really saturates the wood very deep.Even if you scratch it the colored wood will show rather than raw wood. After that they will be finished with Tung oil.
The only way to stain hard wood, everything else acts only as a surface stain and is easily damaged.
 

Smoke

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Four tops, No not a sixties doo wop band, four tops that have been completed and ready for the leg process.

This part represents most of the drudgery of building stands. Cutting out the parts for the tops, laminating center boards, ripping frame material, cutting the tongue and grooves and biscuit slotting the miters. Then gluing the whole mess together and finding clamps that are usually scattered all around the garage.

The one top is not sanded yet, and the glue can be seen at the corners.

A close up of the expansion groove all around the top.

A close up of a top showing the grain and how laminations disappear after sanding.

Moving on to legs this week. At this point the tops are 28" x 21".
 

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Vance Wood

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Four tops, No not a sixties doo wop band, four tops that have been completed and ready for the leg process.

This part represents most of the drudgery of building stands. Cutting out the parts for the tops, laminating center boards, ripping frame material, cutting the tongue and grooves and biscuit slotting the miters. Then gluing the whole mess together and finding clamps that are usually scattered all around the garage.

The one top is not sanded yet, and the glue can be seen at the corners.

A close up of the expansion groove all around the top.

A close up of a top showing the grain and how laminations disappear after sanding.

Moving on to legs this week. At this point the tops are 28" x 21".
Do you use Tight Bond? Also looks like Cherry?
 

Smoke

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Do you use Tight Bond? Also looks like Cherry?
Up to this point the tops are made with Weldwood powder resin glue, marine grade. A bear to sand but stronger than the wood itself.

After this point I do use tightbond glue for dark wood. It works very similer to the powder glue. I like the aliphatic resin because they are a little faster. The Weldwood is slow to cure, like overnight but affords me working time getting that expansion joint centered on the center board and is water proof when dry.
 

Smoke

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Working on the legs for one of the stands. The 2x4 in the chop saw is for making the long mitre on the sub stand. To get a rounded look at the intersection I chose to make the top of the leg larger. By doing this it flattens out the mitre at the intersection of the triple mitre.

It takes a lot of clamps to construct stands with all the legs perpendicular to the frame and top. Extra time is worth it here as a bum leg looks terrible. This will all set in the clamps overnight.
 

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Smoke

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Here is the rough stand. The top will be elevated on dowels (about 3/4-1 inch gap) not like the blocks of wood here. Maybe three in the center and on the corners, don't know yet. Will work on that tomorrow. All the corners will be rounded over with the top edge of the bottom sub stand being rounded over quite large. Lots of sanding to do, fasten the top on and begin finishing.

This stand would bring $5 to $6 hundred in Japan at this size 28" x 22" x 12".
 

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Bill S

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Lucky you, you do this for a living, and have plenty, I can never seem to have enough of those damned clamps when you need them.

Nice job by the way. Can't wait to see the end results, i'm sure these will turn out quite nice.
 
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