Conquering Fuzzies in Construction Pine

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Re: Conquering Fuzzies in Construction Pine

Postby Boltz » Sat Mar 24, 2012 4:43 pm

You are definitely on the right track working to improve machine stability. Also runout and axial float in your tool holding/drive system.

I have a 250 Lb. steel gantry, servo motors, and a 5 HP Colombo spindle and my fuzzies look to be a lot less than what I've seen pictures of from 80/20 machines. I haven't carved any oak yet, but construction grade pine cuts nice and clean.

If the gantry has a resonance and is slamming the bit into the work and pulling it out at high speed, it could have an effect, perhaps breaking down the edge on the bit faster than a more stable system would.

Most of the machinery used to produce those nice looking cuts is fairly heavy and servo driven.

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Re: Conquering Fuzzies in Construction Pine

Postby Joe Crumley » Sat Mar 24, 2012 10:26 pm

It's hard to figure out whats going on with this problem. Perhaps it could a machine flaw however it looks like the wood being carved. I've looked and looked at my Lowe's for wood that looks this. The only thing that gets close is what they call white wood. That stuff it pithy. I'm quiet sure yellow pine isn't the wood being carved. It looks like eastern white pine but I doubt that.

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Re: Conquering Fuzzies in Construction Pine

Postby Adrian » Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:51 am

Not sure if the classifications are the same on that side of the pond as they are over here but the stuff they DIY sheds call white wood is usually spruce grown in more temperate climates so it grows faster than the good stuff from colder climes.

Moves all over the place and is usually full of resin pockets.
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Re: Conquering Fuzzies in Construction Pine

Postby zeeway » Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:59 am

My experience is the local Lowes/HD stores carry 2x4's and 2x6's in a white wood which is either spruce or white pine, and very soft - carves well by hand, but not by cnc router. 2x8's and above are typically yellow pine, which are a lot harder, and can be carved either way with the occasionally fuzzy.

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Re: Conquering Fuzzies in Construction Pine

Postby Joe Crumley » Sun Mar 25, 2012 1:32 pm

I agree with you boys. White wood moves all over the place and is pithy and fuzzy. If you purchase a 2'x4"x8' it may warp before you get it back to the shop.

TR is this what you are carving?

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Re: Conquering Fuzzies in Construction Pine

Postby TReischl » Sun Mar 25, 2012 2:17 pm

I think what you folks are calling "white wood" may be what is called "fir" throughout the northern reaches of the US. Before anyone starts climbing all over this name, bear in mind, I, myself do not know if it is a "fir" or not. There is so much B.S. in this business of what folks call wood in various areas it is ridiculous. But it is very white in color for sure.

As far as 2X4's go, I do not buy them. Way too many knots.

Ok guys, some of you seem to have this idea that I am having a "problem" cutting construction grade lumber. Not so, I am just working with it to see if it is possible to get it to cut a lot better than its reputation has been.

I also have been cutting true Eastern White pine, knot free, not overly expensive but not exactly cheap either. It also tends to be a bit fuzzy on a router. Some people are saying that oak is also fuzzy, which I agree with, having cut some a few weeks ago on a vent project and spent a lot of time removing the fuzzies.

So, dismissing conquering fuzzies is a good idea as it also useful in some other woods. Oak is a very popular wood to work with.

By the way.....for you wood snobs out there, the other day a crew of guys were doing some work around here. One of them saw some carvings. He spotted one of my test pieces and wanted to buy a carving. I told him I would make him one out of nice clear wood. He said "No Way! I WANT that rustic look!" Just goes to show you, what YOU think is not important, it is what the customer wants and is willing to pay for.
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Re: Conquering Fuzzies in Construction Pine

Postby Joe Crumley » Sun Mar 25, 2012 3:31 pm

TR, That one sent me to Wikipedia.

Come to find out Adrian is probably right. Spruce has thirty five variations and one of them is Fir.

Excellent thought about lumber with personality. I've been using clear heart for years and now interested in lumber with lots of moving grain and knots. I've had some YP sandblasted with the intention of pocketing letters and panels. Here is an example of what you mentioned.

Image

I've tried to get this effect by 3Ding. It's never as good as mother nature. I don't think she can be beat.

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Re: Conquering Fuzzies in Construction Pine

Postby TReischl » Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:02 pm

I am not sure exactly how the following fits into this thread, but it seems appropriate somehow?

Years ago, when I did a lot more fishing that I do now, I read something along the following:

When we are young boys, we go fishing and we typically fish for panfish, bluegills, rock bass and the like. We were happy when we caught them. As we got older, we started fishing for "game" fish. Walleye, bass, and the like. It became important to us how big they were, etc. When we get to our more senior years, we are happy to go fishing for panfishing again, it just makes us happy to be fishing.

I think woodworking is a lot like that. When a lot of us started, we would work with the lumber from lumberyards, construction pine, maybe some finished boards, and we would be happy to make something from it. Then as we got more "skilled" we got into the mode of working with the hardwoods, exotics, etc. Probably got a little snobby in the process, too. But what I notice is that a lot of older woodworkers really enjoy working with that lumberyard wood and can make some really nice stuff out of it.

To be sure, I do like working with the hardwoods, but I no longer think that only "worthy" projects are made out of hardwood. There is a time and place for every type of wood.
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Re: Conquering Fuzzies in Construction Pine

Postby TReischl » Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:11 pm

Hello Adrian,

Appreciate your comments! Having moved around a bit myself, I have seen an amazing variation in "pine" types. In the upper midwest most of the pine came from Canada as it was marked "CanFor". There was something reddish in 2X4 that was typically very knot free but also very brittle.

Now that I am in the Northeast, I no longer see the CanFor lumber. I think a lot of what I see comes from Maine. The Canadian lumber would have the pitch pockets you talked about, but the Maine stuff doesn't, it is rare to find one.

When I lived in the Chicago area, it was a mixed bag, some from Canada, some from Arkansas, and the rest from ????

What is surprising here is that finding hardwoods is difficult!!!! You would think that being in the Northeast, there would be lots of hardwood availability, but it is not so. I can only find 2 places in the entire Boston area that sell hardwoods other than on a commercial scale. Not sure why that is. Maybe this is why I am more interested in pine these days? Out in the farm and prairie country of Chicago I had at least dozen sources, some very large, some that were just small sawmill operations. Strange.
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Re: Conquering Fuzzies in Construction Pine

Postby Phil » Thu Mar 29, 2012 9:47 pm

TReischl,

I live in western MA, a little more than 100 miles from where you are. There are a number of small saw mills around here that sell native hardwoods; cherry, maple, oak, walnut... I've found that eastern white pine which is very reasonable in this area to be good to work with on a CNC.

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Re: Conquering Fuzzies in Construction Pine

Postby TReischl » Thu Mar 29, 2012 10:33 pm

Hello Phil,

I have been over your way a few times, a really, really nice part of the state, and very different from over here. Yesterday I was in the only place that has hardwood that is within a reasonable distance (30 miles), the price of walnut is now $10.50/bd ft, cherry is $9, get this, white oak is $8.50 !!!!! The stuff grows all over the place here, people burn it for firewood.

The local small building supply guy stocks some white pine fortunately and is not crazy, I pay around $3.90 for that. It is totally clear, about 1 1/8 thick and S4S.

You have all sorts of stuff over on that side of the state we do not have over here. One of my favorites over there is Arby's roast beef! They are all gone here.

I dunno, something seems really out of whack on this side of the state, a quarter pounder with cheese, medium coke and fries is now $7.89. Maybe I am just getting the "old guy I remember when prices were...." attitude? But maybe not, my buddy in Chicago tells me he pays about $5.79 for the same meal in Chicago......hmmmmm.

The North Bennett Street School is in Boston (for those of you who have not heard of it, it is a very famous school for woodworkers, turns out top notch furniture makers), I am betting they do not buy their lumber locally!!!!!! Could be wrong.
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Re: Conquering Fuzzies in Construction Pine

Postby TexasCowboy » Fri Mar 30, 2012 12:16 am

TReischl wrote:Well Tex,

It must be nice to be where you are, around here, a 2 X 8 X 8' at Lowe's costs about $7. Walnut is selling for $7-$8 a board foot. Cherry about the same.

If I am going to paint something, I sure as heck am not going to paint walnut or cherry. So that doesn't leave a lot of choices, unless I would like to buy sign foam, which is about as expensive as walnut and cherry. Besides, walnut and cherry do not do any better outdoors than pine, probably worse actually.

How about sending me a truck load of that good ol' inexpensive hardwood you got down there?

P.S. Around here, they use red oak to make pallets, not furniture.


It makes beautiful furniture when done by a professional. I am going to do my entire kitchen cabinets in it. In three years I have sold $67000 (yeah, 67 with 3 zero's, not a misprint) worth of my product. (99 percent in red oak. So the guys using it to make pallets are wasting a wonderful resource.
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Re: Conquering Fuzzies in Construction Pine

Postby jam1962 » Fri Mar 30, 2012 2:10 am

What about kiln dried and air dried lumber? I have tried some popular that the farmer down the road harvested 15 years ago, been kept in a barn all that time. 3D carving in it left so much fuzzies in it I throw it in the fire. I have done the same in 1 year old air dried white oak and it carved just fine.
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Re: Conquering Fuzzies in Construction Pine

Postby TReischl » Fri Mar 30, 2012 1:06 pm

Hello Tex,

A while back I read somewhere that only fine grained woods like walnut and cherry are "cabinet" grade woods. Of course, when I read those sort of articles, I always think to myself "Who set THAT guy up as the Judge of what should or should not be used?" Really nice stuff can be made out of oak when it is quarter or rift sawn. Good example of that is the Craftsman style furniture that was built about a 100 years ago. If the furniture maker selects the wood carefully, it can look really look good.

Then again, I have seen horrific stuff made from red oak, with wild grain running all over the place. It might look good in a hunting lodge though? But in a regular home, it just looks bad.

As for wasting a valuable resource? Well, pallets have to be out of something, and not all red oak is suitable for furniture. What I think happens is that a lot of borderline or even less than suitable red oak gets sawn into "lumber" and is put up for sale. The commercial dealers are probably a lot more scrupulous about their grading.

I was in a store a couple of days ago, looking at $9-10/bd ft cherry that had knots and stain streaks in it! I asked where it had come from? The clerk told me that a local sold it to them. I said "You expect people to buy this at this price?" He said "Yup, where else they gonna go?" Nice.

Hello Jam1962,

3D carving seems to be the most difficult challenge when it comes to fuzzies, to be certain. I notice that it tends to occur when the tool is cutting upwards in Z against the grain. I have had some better results setting the raster angle to 45 and even 90.
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Re: Conquering Fuzzies in Construction Pine

Postby larrybadgett » Fri Mar 30, 2012 11:02 pm

[quote="TReischl"]Hello Tex,

A while back I read somewhere that only fine grained woods like walnut and cherry are "cabinet" grade woods. Of course, when I read those sort of articles, I always think to myself "Who set THAT guy up as the Judge of what should or should not be used?" Really nice stuff can be made out of oak when it is quarter or rift sawn. Good example of that is the Craftsman style furniture that was built about a 100 years ago. If the furniture maker selects the wood carefully, it can look really look good.

Then again, I have seen horrific stuff made from red oak, with wild grain running all over the place. It might look good in a hunting lodge though? But in a regular home, it just looks bad.

As for wasting a valuable resource? Well, pallets have to be out of something, and not all red oak is suitable for furniture. What I think happens is that a lot of borderline or even less than suitable red oak gets sawn into "lumber" and is put up for sale. The commercial dealers are probably a lot more scrupulous about their grading.

I was in a store a couple of days ago, looking at $9-10/bd ft cherry that had knots and stain streaks in it! I asked where it had come from? The clerk told me that a local sold it to them. I said "You expect people to buy this at this price?" He said "Yup, where else they gonna go?" Nice.



TReischl

You maybe should think about catching up with the times. Coloration and lake of uniformity is what people are looking for today. They are getting horrific prices for old submerged logs and anything non uniform like burls. If you want straight grain and uniformity in color buy veneer from China.
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