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  • Stump

    Any particular type of wood needed for using a stump or will basically anything work?

  • #2
    Any hardwood is great; I have used pine with success and MDF laminated into a block.

    Hardwoods wear better,

    Cheers Charlie


    • #3
      I lucked in with a 3' tall 24" diameter lump of oak from a local arborist. Made the mistake of stripping the bark, but slowed down the cracking by making a drip tray for it to sit in and feeding it a gallon of linseed oil over a few months. It still cracked, but 2 years on it seems to be stable.
      Cheers, Richard


      • #4
        Any hard wood is the way to go, here how to prepare it ,.... When you have a nice piece about belt height , DO NOT TAKE THE BARK OUT ! use a spud bag, a old bed sheet or something like it and put a LOT of linseed oil on it ,rest the block of wood in a upright position , then put a LOT of linseed oil on the top, try to keep the wood in a dry place out of any sunlight, Keep poring oil on it every week for as long as you can . DO NOT cut any holes on it till the block is dead dry
        If that is too long to wait , just get something for the time been till the good one is ready

        Peter T.

        PS if that does not work ? WELL... /() ) ( )..////// [[[[[[[[]]]] ??/... ] ] ] You can purchase a ''FACILITATOR'' from Wray .
        Last edited by Peter Tommasini; 20-01-21, 01:07 PM.


        • #5
          My advice & experience.

          I saved two large pieces of freshly cut oak for approx 10 yrs- including the time between I first saw Peter's Monaro video and when I took a class from him. Red Oak, completely dry, stored away from direct sunlight inside my unheated shop on blocks concrete floors here in SC. Not oiled. No worries about cracks.... everything looked fine in terms of checking. I took one to class for Peter's advice about laying out the top edge, because those different shapes and contours are serious tools that many overlook. A plain round or straight-edged stump top is a wasted opportunity. I cut a horseshoe relief (not a round dish) like Peter prefers for shrinking. Within 1-2 wks, there was a 1"+ wide check right through the relief. Not cool. I also found I was very unhappy with the witness marks produced by the very open structure red oak end grain on aluminum. Also not cool.

          I replaced those pieces of oak with a taller single piece of pecan (preferred by some for mallet heads) that was also freshly cut when I got it. I got a crotch, turned it upside down so the splayed end was now the base. Three point base helps it always sit well. Not a fan of wheels or iron bands on a stump. I soaked this pecan stump's ends with boiled linseed oil until it gelled on the surface, flipping it end for end while soaking the bottom in a pan. That took about 3-4 months. I also stripped most of the brand new well-attached bark to better eliminate local bugs that will eat the inner bark layer before slowly infesting the rest of the stump. My old oak stumps have them and tiny piles of sawdust still appear around it. So does the piece of pecan from the same tree that I used for mounting my anvil. No linseed oil but I left the bark on it. There are new holes appearing all the time, so it will be replaced. Checking is also much worse on that piece of pecan.

          The goal when producing quality lumber is to seal the endgrain of wood to force it to dry through the sides to limit or eliminate checking. With bark in place, drying is much more difficult and takes much longer. Insect infestation in and via the cambium layer of of bark and then into the wood is a serious problem when producing lumber. If you can keep the bugs out or kill them, that's great.

          My good pecan stump has stabilized. Some additional checking but nothing bad. Checks along the side mean nothing. Best part is a very consistent surface that leaves/produces no marks on aluminum. It's not brittle like some harder woods, either. I really like it. Good luck with yours.
          Last edited by cliffrod; 20-01-21, 02:54 PM. Reason: typo


          • #6
            I think Will Cronkite posted this on AllMetalShaping, I'm not sure but it is a good reference for the various hardwood species and their relative hardness.

            One species not included in this list that would be an excellent candidate would be a Black Locust. They are common in North America, grow fast, a very dense and hard wood, and are often considered a nuisance type tree, so often people want to get rid of them. Wood is extremely hard and fairly resistant to cracking. One I have now I did band it to help it resist cracking. It's also one of the best woods to heat with. Really hot fire. They do have some nasty thorns so be careful.

            Click image for larger version  Name:	image_579.jpg Views:	0 Size:	172.9 KB ID:	5192
            Last edited by Chris_Hamilton; 20-01-21, 06:17 PM.


            • #7
              How tall do you make your stump in relation to your elbow height ?


              • Chris_Hamilton
                Chris_Hamilton commented
                Editing a comment
                Your beltline is ideal, if you can get something that long.

              • cliffrod
                cliffrod commented
                Editing a comment
                A stump is an wooden anvil. Anvils are normally set at the approximate or average fall height of your hammer face for a square hit. That allows full range of motion without under- or over-extension, providing the most power and best accuracy. My stump and anvil are both set at those heights. If taller or lower, you'll fatigue and strain faster while working. You will also have more difficulty with accuracy.

                I've spent far more time with a swung hammer against stone, but always strive to make the working height match the fall/swung height of the hammer by adjusting job height or my height (with risers) as I work. It makes a big difference.