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Thread: Lilac wood

  1. #1

    Default Lilac wood

    Asked to take a wayward lilac trunk off over the weekend. As usual, cut off a piece and put it in the lathe to see what it might do. About 3 diameter. Uniform very light color, no dark center at all, cut (wet) like a fine grained fruitwood. Online, indications of use in pens, knives. MC forum mention of a violin made of it.
    Anyone have an interesting use?
    Other than bespoke magic wands.

  2. #2
    Registered User tree's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lilac wood

    My father-in-law made kitchen spatulas and such from it. He said dry lilac was VERY hard wood.
    Clark Beavans

  3. #3

    Default Re: Lilac wood

    I've used it to make bridges several times. It's close grained and quite hard but not too dense. The heart is purply which goes to brown and the sap very white. It'll twist all to hell while it dries.
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  5. #4

    Default Re: Lilac wood

    Gorgeous bridge, both from engineering and design!
    Correct about that warping. I made a test spindle, about 3/4x16 rough turned wet, and letting it dry in the lathe, lots of movement in two days. Olive is also interesting that way. This variety hasn’t any purple, at least in a 3” trunk, and also isn’t particularly fragrant when cut.

  6. #5
    Registered User amowry's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lilac wood

    I made lots of spoons out of lilac when I was a kid. I carved it green and then used an used an "old-timers'" method of seasoning it: Immerse it in melted paraffin in a toaster oven until bubbles stop coming out, at which point all the moisture has been replaced by paraffin. There's little or no wood movement that way. It assumes paraffin is non-toxic, of course. I'm not sure I'd do it that way now

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  8. #6

    Default Re: Lilac wood

    Except for the toaster oven in flames, it sounds both non-toxic and a good process. Better than the other old-timer recipe which involved soaking tools in used motor oil. In the antique tool collection universe, this is still acceptable.
    Just be aware that our UK friends think paraffin is what we call kerosene , which I would not recommend on spoons - so UK people, paraffin is solid wax, as used in candles and canning, not lamp oil!

  9. #7

    Default Re: Lilac wood

    Pampered Chef sells a 3-spoon set made out of teak for $27.00.

    https://www.pamperedchef.com/shop/Fe...ool+Set/100156

    How would your lilac compare to teak in terms of wear and looks?

  10. #8
    Still a mandolin fighter Mandophyte's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lilac wood

    Thanks for translating paraffin for us European types, please can someone translate "toaster oven".
    Many thanks,
    Last edited by Mandophyte; Sep-14-2020 at 12:39pm. Reason: Minor edit.
    John

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  11. #9
    Registered User amowry's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lilac wood

    Quote Originally Posted by Mandophyte View Post
    Thanks for translating paraffin for us European types, please can someone translate "toaster oven".
    Many thanks,
    Just a small oven, pretty ubiquitous here. It's combination of a toaster and an oven, and it doesn't work as well as either one Good for soldering, though, and melting wax if you're not concerned about burning your house down.

    To clarify, if I were using that wax method these days, I would use a double boiler, outside.

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  13. #10

    Default Re: Lilac wood

    Quote Originally Posted by Mandophyte View Post
    Thanks for translating paraffin for us European types, please can someone translate "toaster oven".
    Many thanks,
    Surprising question, considering that the electric toaster is a Scottish invention from ca. 1893. I tried to Google what toaster ovens might be called in the UK, but got no significant hits. So, I don’t know. Here in the US, these particularly frugal devices and foods designed for them, are here to stay, although they, like everything else, are becoming larger and microprocessorized. Worse, we are recklessly allowing all our appliances to talk to each other and the internet. Lacking any national health plan, one’s morning reaheated pizza slice is damning data headed straight to your insurance plan.

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