Is Pine Good for spoon carving?


Is Pine Good for spoon carving

In this article, we are going to scrutinize pine wood. Is pine good for spoon carving? Find out!

The fun in carving starts when you start experimenting with your material. Wood is the fundamental material in wood carving therefore we are bound to explore different species from time to time. While all woods can be carved some caving disciplines like spoon carving tend to be a little picky with woods.

Pine Wood

Pine Wood for spoon carving

Botanical name: Pinus strobus

White pine’s versatility, workability, and non-resinous nature made it a preferred wood for construction and woodworking for centuries. Early American settlers often honored the white pine, putting it on the colonies’ flag during the American Revolution and other flags and coins. Unfortunately, white pine has become scarcer because of its widespread use, although second-generation stands are presently maturing.

  • Other Names: Eastern white pine, northern white pine, northern pine, Quebec pine, soft pine, balsam pine, Canadian white pine.
  • Sources: Canada and U.S.A.
  • Characteristics: Straight grain; even texture; light-yellow to reddish-brown heartwood.
  • Uses: Furniture, joinery, boat building, construction, plywood, and veneers.
  • Workability: Good; blunts cutters slightly; poor bending properties; too soft for some furniture use.
  • Finishing:¬†Accepts finishes nicely.
  • Weight: 28 Ib./cu. ft.
  • Price: Inexpensive.¬†

Is Pine Good for spoon carving?

Pine is a good wood for whittling most things. But for spoon carving pine may not be the best option.

Carving pine is not hard and you can carve spoons out of pine. The problem is pine wood is too weak for working spoons. Working spoons are subjected to heavy use and therefore require strong wood like birch. There are some exceptions where you may find a strong old-growth pine but nowadays they are rare.

If you have bought some pine or getting some free pine wood the good news is you can still carve spoons. Ornamental spoons and skill practicing are some of the valuable ways you can get the most out of your pine.

Quick tips for carving spoons out of pine

Quick tips for carving spoons out of pine
“It is amazing what you can do with a scrap piece of pine and the right tools. One of my first efforts.” – Clive Cuttler
  • While carving green wood is encouraged in spoon carving I would highly advise you to work with pine while it’s dry. Wet pine has a lot of sap that messes everything and clogs your knives.
  • When carving softwoods like pine make sure you have very sharp tools. softwoods are not strong enough to hold back the pressure of the blade slicing through. The wood tends to split ahead of the cutting edge if the force exceeds.
  • If you would still like to use your pine spoon in the kitchen a pro tip is to let the spoon sit in boiling water for around 20 minutes. This helps release some of the sap trapped in the wood that would, later on, be oozing from the surface of the spoon from time to time.
  • If you are carving an ornamental spoon then you have the option of staining the spoon before sealing it with a top coat. Have fun changing the color of the wood while still showing the figure in pine. But try to use a wood conditioner to avoid blotching which is a common problem when staining pine wood.

Is Pine Good for spoon carving: Summary

Pine is not an ideal wood for spoon carving. It has a major sap problem if carved green. It also may not be ideal for working spoons that undergo heavy use. However, pine is still good for carving and can be carved into beautiful spoons despite those shortcomings.

The spoon doesn’t have to be working spoons but rather ornamental or art pieces. Pine can also be good for beginners spoon carvers that want to explore carving different woods. In this case, pine can also be good for spoon carving. Hope this article has informed and inspired your next carving session.

Hadwin Fisher

I'm basically a "Hobby Whittler." Everything I make is for Personal use, gifts for others, or other Items for charity auctions or other "Causes" i.e. "Local Hospital" Etc. Some health issues are interfering with me doing any large-scale projects in my workshop at this Present Time. That said I can't stay idle, whittling, and writing about whittling with my Friend ken Read keeps me sane and happy!

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