Naked Seams?

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monophoto

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I'm preparing to turn an expresso tamper handle and have a question. I realize that this more a matter of preference than technique, but that won't keep me from asking.

My local wood supplier doesn't carry turning blanks with my preferences of species, size and price (ie, I'm cheap), so I'm thinking of using some nicely patterned hard maple that was being sold as 'kindling' by a manufacturer of wooden kitchenware. The problem that I have is that I don't have a piece of the size required for the project, so I'm probably going to have to glue up an appropriate blank.

My experience with glue-ups is that the seam is always visible to some degree. Even under the best of circumstances, the discontinuity in grain pattern is a giveaway.

So I have a choice - either hope that the seam won't be too visible, or else celebrating the glue-up by laminating a piece of contrasting wood in the seam, perhaps a small layer of walnut.

So what is the general opinion - naked seams or emphasized seams?
 
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Paladin

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Sep 21, 2009
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Kenosha, WI
Seam?

I'm preparing to turn an expresso tamper handle and have a question. I realize that this more a matter of preference than technique, but that won't keep me from asking.

My local wood supplier doesn't carry turning blanks with my preferences of species, size and price (ie, I'm cheap), so I'm thinking of using some nicely patterned hard maple that was being sold as 'kindling' by a manufacturer of wooden kitchenware. The problem that I have is that I don't have a piece of the size required for the project, so I'm probably going to have to glue up an appropriate blank.

My experience with glue-ups is that the seam is always visible to some degree. Even under the best of circumstances, the discontinuity in grain pattern is a giveaway.

So I have a choice - either hope that the seam won't be too visible, or else celebrating the glue-up by laminating a piece of contrasting wood in the seam, perhaps a small layer of walnut.

So what is the general opinion - naked seams or emphasized seams?

I purchases some "charcoal" from the hobby store to color resin to make blanks. My pressure pot blew up, so my blank making career came to an end, with no blanks made. But, I still have the charcoal. I use it when I mix up epoxy to turn the epoxy black. It works great. You could do this for your glue up, then you will have a nice black line of epoxy. Celebrate the seam.

Or, use a contrasting wood plus the colored epoxy, or even a strip of the same wood, plus the colored epoxy and really celebrate the seam.
 

randyrls

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Feb 2, 2006
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4,575
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Harrisburg, PA 17112
So what is the general opinion - naked seams or emphasized seams?


I think you should emphasize the seam with a small piece of veneer. Possibly black or dark wood. You want a fine grained wood though... Walnut may have too coarse and open a grain to show well.

Here is an idea; Make the handle one piece of wood, and the tamper part a different wood. Like this.

tamper.jpg

I believe Eli Avisera (sp?) started this to create beautiful wood patterns....
 
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