View Full Version : Crusty old gray burls

Burl Source
12-13-2011, 08:52 PM
A guy showed up with these today.
Some big crusty looking gray chunks of burl.
But.......there might be something good inside.

Eamon Burke
12-13-2011, 09:29 PM

It's like a wooden geode!

12-13-2011, 09:45 PM
Ohh no, more wood to spend money on.

I gotta quit looking at Marks threads.

Mike Davis
12-14-2011, 12:38 AM
You can toss that back on the truck...tell them my address....We will talk later :D

12-14-2011, 01:19 AM
If I hadn't just bought a block of that stuff, I'd be envious now... ;) This may be an inappropriate question and you don't have to answer: I am just curious how much one would get for such a large piece of burl.


El Pescador
12-14-2011, 02:07 AM
From the title I thought you might be referring to you and your boss...

12-14-2011, 02:32 AM
Mark, what kind of wood is that? That chunk looks like it has a LOT of heartwood, if that term applies to burls.

Burl Source
12-14-2011, 01:32 PM
From the title I thought you might be referring to you and your boss...
It was one of those double meaning phrases. Could be taken either way.

The fellow who brought the burls used to own a veneer mill that closed several years ago. I used to get a lot of real good wood from him. I hadn't seen him for a few years. He is kind of a wild one so I thought he was dead or in jail or something like that. Turns out over the last few years he has been harvesting and exporting burls to to a veneer mill in Spain.

He showed up with these four burls yesterday. He wanted $3000 for the load which wasn't out of line but a little high. When negotiations started getting colorful between him and my boss I found other things to do. With him it always goes this way. He thinks of veneer values and we think of wood yard values.
The wood in the photos are 3 spalted Sycamore burls and one redwood burl. The sycamore will be over half waste but there will be a lot of good stuff as well. The last time I had spalted sycamore from him I cut it up into guitar billets that sold for $200+ each. When I started doing knife handle material I tried to buy back some of the sycamore from some of my regular customers. I offered a 50% profit with no takers. The F word was used a few times.

The 4th photo shows a log portion of the Sycamore. There will be bands of contrasting colors and the snakeskin look you can get with sycamore. Most of this will get cut up for the guitar guys. They like to bookmatch pieces for acoustic guitar backs and for the fronts of solid body electric guitars. Ends up looking like rainbow snakeskin. It is a good tonewood as well.

The 5th photo is redwood burl. I will also cut most of it into guitar billets. They like to bookmatch it with the sapwood in the center.
Here is a guitar by one of my regular customers. de8338646b36fd3f3c6211c7&oneredir=1

Burl Source
12-14-2011, 05:10 PM
These are pieces I cut from a chunk sticking out at the end of a piece.
They are cut wrong (crosscut) but give me a better idea what the sycamore will be like.


Eamon Burke
12-14-2011, 10:33 PM
pics aren't working on the guitars(I wanna see those!).

Will the pink part keep it's color now that it's exposed to air?

12-15-2011, 01:48 AM
I'm glad you put a pic of them on the truck to get some perspective. Those are big chunks of wood!

l r harner
12-15-2011, 09:29 AM
feel free to cot a few nice big slabs (save you all that saw time :) ) and i can cut as i need then

Burl Source
12-15-2011, 03:58 PM
These are by Tom Clement. He is a luthier in Florida that has been using a lot of my redwood on his bass guitars over the years.
His website is http://www.clementbass.com

This is one of the ones I was looking for where he used the sapwood.
Here is one with sycamore. It was not a real dramatic piece of wood but he still did good with it.
He did this one with some walnut I got several years ago from the same guy who brought me this sycamore.

Burl Source
12-15-2011, 04:06 PM
feel free to cot a few nice big slabs (save you all that saw time :) ) and i can cut as i need then

I intend to cut most of the wood to be quartersawn into larger billets that could be used by the luthiers or get cut up into handle blocks later.
The question about the bright pink. That area will turn a darker red/brown.