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Thread: Boxwood

  1. #1

    Boxwood

    Well, fortunately for me, and unfortunately for the boxwood trees, they were in the middle of where my bedroom is going to be, so they had to come out, and couldn't be trans planted either. So, my question is what else can be done with it other than boxes. The large one is maybe 5 inches diameter. Small one 2 inch. Should I keep tiny branches for hair pins and chop sticks? Or???

    robo hippy

  2. #2
    Cuttings are real easy to root if I remember correctly. You could then share the small plants with family, friends and 'creekers. We could all be part of the Robo Hippy legacy.

    Sorry, Reed. Bad Gene grabbed my computer. Now back in the cage. Please forgive.

  3. #3
    Reed, boxwood handles are often seen on chisels and other tools, but I am not sure the shrubs we call boxwood are the same species/wood as the boxwood handles.

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  4. #4
    I asked someone about that years ago. Boxwood and boxwood plants are the same. The real question is can you discern the boxwood plant from azalea ,privet,etc

  5. #5
    I donít have a sense of smell, but from what I have heard boxwood shrubs have an unpleasant and distinguishable odor.

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  6. #6
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    A section of 5"D by 8" long or so would make nice natural edge long oval bowls. I make a lot of the long oval bowls both with and without bark and they do sell or are useful.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reed Gray View Post
    Well, fortunately for me, and unfortunately for the boxwood trees, they were in the middle of where my bedroom is going to be, so they had to come out, and couldn't be trans planted either. So, my question is what else can be done with it other than boxes. The large one is maybe 5 inches diameter. Small one 2 inch. Should I keep tiny branches for hair pins and chop sticks? Or???

    robo hippy
    Oh boy, oh boy! I wanna come visit for sure now! I might even be talked into helping build the bedroom. I've never seen any growing bigger than a bush.

    Boxwood might be my favorite light-colored wood even over dogwood if available in the same sizes. I have a little that a friend imported from Europe that I'm saving for a special occasion. It is beautiful for all sorts of small things, tops, anything threaded, small boxes, needle cases, turned handles. (make a nice handle for a carbide burnishing rod) The 5" trunks are big enough for goblets or small bowls. You could make chess pieces, thimbles, knitting needles, bone folders, smoking pipes, knife handles. Extremely fine grain but relatively dense, takes detail very well. (not as dense as mountain mahogany!!) Wonderful for carving.

    I'd save and dry most of it but I have no idea if the tiny branches are of any use since they are mostly juvenile wood. The two pieces I have are about 2" in diameter. Clear pieces 1" or so in diameter and long enough might make some great magic wands. Ah, a set of two wands for a dual, one from boxwood, one from ebony!

    JKJ

  8. #8
    Thanks for some more ideas. They were growing under a 30 on the stump Oregon Incense Cedar (pencil cedar, not like the eastern red cedar), and may have been 40 or more years old, no idea really, maybe I can count the rings. An arborist friend identified them as boxwood. I believe there is an American version, and the European/British version as well. My arborist tole me they always stink, but no real odor to this stuff. Really dense, maybe a step or three up from dog wood. I will be saving all I can.

    John, the new house and shop should be move in ready about the same time as the AAW Symposium..... The Oregon Country Fair/Hippy fair right after that. I will have space if you come out for a visit....

    robo hippy

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reed Gray View Post
    Thanks for some more ideas. They were growing under a 30 on the stump Oregon Incense Cedar (pencil cedar, not like the eastern red cedar), and may have been 40 or more years old, no idea really, maybe I can count the rings. An arborist friend identified them as boxwood. I believe there is an American version, and the European/British version as well. My arborist tole me they always stink, but no real odor to this stuff. Really dense, maybe a step or three up from dog wood. I will be saving all I can.

    John, the new house and shop should be move in ready about the same time as the AAW Symposium..... The Oregon Country Fair/Hippy fair right after that. I will have space if you come out for a visit....

    robo hippy
    That sounds tempting, I think those dates are open at the moment and I have extra frequent flyer miles. My biggest problem is I almost went broke at the NC symposium - I have an American Express card and no common sense.

    JKJ

  10. #10
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    Reed - It was a dozen years ago that you and I were part of a group that Nick Stagg hosted. Alan Beatty was the instructor and when he taught us the art of chasing threads, I recall that boxwood was one of his favorites for making threaded boxes.

    Is my memory still working?

    Mike

  11. #11
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    I got to doing some searching on thread chasing and came across this article.....

    My twist on Hand Chasing Threads in Wood, submitted by Sam Angelo,
    which Alan Beatty was featured in. One of the statements I am quoting here.....

    "Most turners will place boxwood on their most favorite wood to chase threads in list. With a SG of .9,it is not the hardest wood in the world. But this fine-grained wood is a dream to work."

  12. #12
    Hi Reed,
    Boxwood is also used for string inlay work, if that kind of work interests you. Google Federal Style, String Inlay or Steve Latta for examples.

    Just another idea.....

    Fred
    "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."
    - Sir Edmund Burke

  13. #13
    Mike,
    That was some years ago, but no idea how many. Alan said boxwood was his favorite, and the only suitable American wood for thread chasing was Mountain Mahogany. I still have a sizable stash of that...

    I was wondering if it is ever used in instrument making as in fret boards, bridges, string nuts, or violin pegs...

    robo hippy

  14. #14
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    boxwood uses

    Quote Originally Posted by Reed Gray View Post
    Mike,
    That was some years ago, but no idea how many. Alan said boxwood was his favorite, and the only suitable American wood for thread chasing was Mountain Mahogany. I still have a sizable stash of that...

    I was wondering if it is ever used in instrument making as in fret boards, bridges, string nuts, or violin pegs...

    robo hippy
    I found this about boxwood, more use than I imagined. Probably used widely for things now commonly made from plastic. I certainly wouldn't hesitate to use it on an instrument. In fact, I had planned to use some on a bowed psaltry (the Psimple Psaltry: http://www.apsimplepsaltery.com/)

    From the Wood Database, Buxus sempervirens:

    "Common Uses: Boxwood is well-suited for carving and turning, and the treeís diminutive size restricts it to smaller projects. Some common uses for Boxwood include: carvings, chess pieces, musical instruments (flutes, recorders, woodwinds, etc.), rulers, handles, turned objects, and other small specialty items."
    http://www.wood-database.com/boxwood/

    and from the ultimate source of fact in the universe, wikipedia:

    "Wood Carving - Owing to its fine grain it is a good wood for fine wood carving, although this is limited by the small sizes available. It is also resistant to splitting and chipping, and thus useful for decorative or storage boxes. Formerly, it was used for wooden combs. As a timber or wood for carving it is "boxwood" in all varieties of English. Owing to the relatively high density of the wood (it is one of the few woods that are denser than water), boxwood is often used for chess pieces, unstained boxwood for the white pieces and stained ('ebonized') boxwood for the black pieces, in lieu of ebony. The extremely fine endgrain of box makes it suitable for woodblock printing and woodcut blocks, for which it was the usual material in Europe. In the 16th century, boxwood was used to create intricate decorative carvings; as of 2016, the largest collection of these carvings is at the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto. High quality wooden spoons have usually been carved from box, with beech being the usual cheaper substitute. Boxwood was once called dudgeon, and was used for the handles of dirks, and daggers, with the result that such a knife was known as a dudgeon. Although one "in high dudgeon" is indignant and enraged, and while the image of a dagger held high, ready to plunge into an enemy, has a certain appeal, lexicographers have no real evidence as to the origin of the phrase.

    Musical instruments - Due to its high density and resistance to chipping, boxwood is a relatively economical material, and has been used to make parts for various stringed instruments since antiquity. It is mostly used to make tailpieces, chin rests and tuning pegs, but may be used for a variety of other parts as well. Other woods used for this purpose are rosewood and ebony. Boxwood was a common material for the manufacture of recorders in the eighteenth century, and a large number of mid- to high-end instruments made today are produced from one or other species of boxwood. Boxwood was once a popular wood for other woodwind instruments, and was among the traditional woods for Great Highland bagpipes before tastes turned to imported dense tropical woods such as cocuswood, ebony, and African blackwood."


    It also mentions there are 70 species.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buxus

    JKJ

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