Ficus Bowl – by Mark Wilson @ ~ woodworking community

This is the Ficus I rough turned last March and set aside for Future Mark to deal with the cracks. I think I have one more cut of Ficus left.

Speaking of wood I’ve run out of: There’s been this enormous Jacaranda around the corner for as long as I can remember. I’ve lived in this house, but for a couple of short interludes, for about forty-one years. Last week, I espied evidence that someone had been cutting on it. I paid attention. (You know how fond I am of Jacaranda.) So, yesterday, I go around the corner to fetch VOD’s newspaper, and I see the culprit, in the act. I drive by, get home and park the money-maker and grab my gloves and get in my pickup and drive over there. I park the buggy, get out, and put my gloves on. I step over and begin to survey the pickin’s.

“We’re keeping that,” yells the guy up the tree.

“What? says I.

“We’re keeping that. We sell it.”

“All of it?

“Yeah. What do you want it for?

“I make stuff out of wood. That’s beautiful wood you’re cutting.”

:What do you make?”

“I turn it on the lathe, mostly.”

“So, what? You just want a couple of little pieces?”

“May I have some?”

“Yeah. A little.”

Get a load of this cat. He thinks because he’s being paid (way too much, no doubt) to cut down a tree, he owns the wood. Bastard.

Every other time I’ve caught people cutting down, or trimming trees, they’ve been more than happy to let me lighten the haul-away portion of their program. So much so, that, once, I even got the guy on the skip loader to help me get a couple of big logs (Eucalyptus) home. Not this guy. This guy OWNS all that gorgeous Jacaranda. And, for what? To sell it. And, for what? Firewood, no doubt. Big, fat turd.

I wound up with a couple of little three-inch sticks that I may, one day, make goblets from. What a waste. It was a huge tree, with a big, fat trunk and big, fat branches. And now it’s gone. Big, fat bastard. I hope he blows his big, fat back out moving all that wood.

Back to the Ficus Bowl, the star of the show.

I’m pleased with how this came out. And, again, if any of you knows where I put my burnishing wires, please to be forthcoming with that information. That line near the bottom really wanted to be burned, and I have no other suitable device for the burning. I’m only half kidding about one of you knowing something. I may well have mentioned, in some previous project or blog post (you know how I prattle on), that I had to move my burning wires to get them out of the way, or something. You know? Someplace where I wouldn’t forget where they are?

And, no. The spot of resin in the bottom is not there because I blew out the bottom. I did not blow out the bottom of this bowl.

I had to do something with the resin, so I poured it in the rough-turned bowl that I set aside in March, not knowing, at the time, that I’d be finishing it today.

For the finish on this, I sanded through the grits, and all the way through the micromesh. Then, I hit it with Shine Juice. Then, I topped that with a couple coats of straight shellac, I then went over that with YG, and finished with a few coats of HS.

While I was turning away the resin in the bottom with a carbide tool, hanging way too far over the rest, the tool dug in and threw the back of my knuckles against the spinning, very sharp, inner edge of the rim. There was blood. Nothing to write home about. That’s why God made Band-aids, right? So we could keep the blood off the wood.

Oh. There’s more.

Note the signature. It’s purple. It’s purple Sharpie in a signature made with a rotary tool. I need a new woodbuning pen. Or, a brand. (They’re so expensive.)

Thank you. And, I apologize.

— Mark