Wednesday, September 5, 2012

National Geographic

Recently while reading an old issue of National Geographic I found a interesting little tid bit.

The article was talking about the varrious ecosystems on earth, and had a little blur about trees. The blur talked about a recent survey by NASA and the amount of trees that they had found.

"In 2005, with the help of NASA satellite imagery, it was estimated that there were approximately 400 billion, 246 million trees on the earth. That would be approximately 61 trees per person."

I am not sure if I should be amazed at the number of people, or sadden by the fact that both these numbers have problem changed in the last years. Seeing as the population increases in the last 8 years would cause more deforestation. But I guess it would be National Geographic if it did not make me feel bad while sitting on the toilet. (Yes ladies that is truly where men do their reading)

So before I leave you all the on the save the tree note, I found wow fact for you.

The world's tallest living standing tree, a softwood Coast Redwood (sequoia sempervirens) named Hyperion, is in Redwood National Park located in California. Last measured in October 2006, it was approximately 379 feet, 1 1/2 inches tall (almost 38 stories!), or about 8 stories higher than the Statue of Liberty.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Paper in trees

Sorry about the week off, I did not feel very well last week. But during the greatness of moaning and slumping around the house, I was asked an interesting question. My grandson, who is in the "why" stage of youth asked me how many papers come from a tree. Seeing as paper, even in today's paperless society still plays a big role, I though it would be a nice fun fact. So next time your at work, or just need something to start the awkward conversations, tell them about this.

How much paper can you get from one tree? It depends.

First, unit measurements of pulpwood (for paper and packaging) and sawlogs (for lumber and wood products) are in "cords" and "board feet" respectfully. A pulpwood cord is a stack of logs four feet tall, four feet deep and eight feet long (4 x 4 x 8). All measurements of how much wood fiber is used to produce paper products are in cords or tons.
Second, the initial step in preparing logs for pulpmaking is to remove the bark. It is unsuitable for paper production, but is burned by paper firms to produce energy. However, depending on the type of tree, bark can account for 10 to 20 percent of a tree’s volume.
Third, different trees yield varying quantities of pulp. It varies, for example, by species (hardwood, softwood and aspen) and subspecies (red pine, jack pine, white pine).
Fourth, different paper grades — tissue, computer, magazine, book — require different volumes or densities of pulp. Even within the book grades, there are different weights of paper which require more or less volume of pulp (and wood fiber).
Because of these variables, it isn’t possible to determine how many books are made from a single tree. However, it is possible to estimate — in general numbers — how many different products may be produced from a cord of wood.

Fun fact of the fun fact:
An acre of forested land may yield an average of 10-15 cords of wood when harvested at maturity — depending not only on the size of the trees, but how productively the land has been managed.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Linseed (Flax) Oil Recipe

This is the recipe my granddaughter made for me. As a side note you have to get the Flax oil. Which is another name for linseed oil. 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Linseed Oil

Recently I was asked why I use linseed oil and recommend it for bowl care. Well, I had honestly never through about it. I use it because it was what my wife would pick up at the store, and with 50 years of marriage under my belt, I have learned not to question what she buys.
So I decided to do some research and back up my use of this type of oil.

Linseed oil comes from a dried ripe flax seed. The oil it self is made by pressing to extract the aplaha-linolenic acid (which for you non-chemist about there is a form of Omega-3). This allows the oil to polymerize in to a solid form, a property that lets the oil act as natural varrish in wood finishes, and brings the pigment out of the wood, or oil paints.

Also unlike some synthetic oils on the mark, linseed is an edible oil. In parts of Europe it is often eaten with potatoes, quark, and cheese. These treats are regarded as a delicacy due to the oils hearty taste, that spices up the bland dishes.  An for the people who have no desire to try it, I can say it is not bad. If fact I had my grand-daughter look up a recipe involving the oil, I will see if I can get her to post it later. I have to admit it was not what I was expecting when I first look at the recipe, but overall it was nice.

But the the overall take away that I got from my research. Is that linseed is a natural oil that gives your wood a beatufiul shine and even add hardness to the wood. 

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Free Shipping

Now till the 24 of July 2012, we are offering free shipping on all purchases.
Just use the code, bluespruce.
This offer is for US residents only.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


The lathe, I have to say it a pretty important part to turning wood. I mean with out my it would take me years to widdle down a wood section to a bowl.
I know that their are many makers of lathes but I don't have a real preference for any group. I a made my own lathe when I was 14 and still to this day am using it.

You basic setting for a lathe

The lathe by definition is a "machine for turning wood, plastic or metal into cylindrical or onical parts or for cutting holes or screws-thread in them." In case people really wanted to know what the dictionary said it was.
In most cases lathes are used for mass production for machine components. (nails, tubes, axle, housings, gears, etc..)
Lathe work, for machine parts

Most lathes are composed of more that 3,500 components. About half contribute to the moments of the lathe. Mine personally I don't think I had the skill at 14 to put that many parts into, but I have never really counted. I do know it took me around two weeks to finish it, with a few days for just ripping apart what I have built.

In a recently survey, there was around 80,0000 lathes in USA, and around 60,000 in Germany. I will note that I found this number in a car article about machine part production across the world.

I hope you enjoyed this little blur about the lathes. If you are interested in a lathe I would suggest going to a wood working store or even a machine supply shop. These people work every day and would know a good deal with what on the market at the moments.
For those who want to go my way and build it, that is great an I wish you luck.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Blue Spruce

Blue spruce is not a wood have been able to turn yet. I have some on the drying rack at the moment, it should be ready to turn in about a month or so, have to say I am excited. I love the Spruce family, it has wonderful color that varies from tree to tree. I also just really enjoy the look of the tree, the color that the needles give off is just great.

Blue spruces are hardy evergreens found through out the northern hemisphere. Unlike a pine or fir, spruces produce single needles along the branches. This makes it  real pain to clean up when they fall, or a sticky mess on your grandsons shoes.

Most may recognize the blue spruce as your mainstream Christmas Tree, at least in the United States. It was made the officially Christmas tree a few years back, Colorado even has a living Spruce that it decorates every year. Every year, Norway gifts New York city with a Norway spruce placed in the middle of Rockefeller Center.

Many cultures have myths surrounding the tree. One is that the tree is a protective female element, the tree of life, the mother tree, and were often made into maypoles for spring festival.