I had wanted to give my latest posting-up, this one, the title, “Pilluing to the Hilt” but as things evolve it has gotten another equally intriguing title.

A thick, bent slab, wrenching itself to pieces.

Out of my stack of material I hauled this one into the workplace to begin one more bent brace. It has developed what I call a significant splitting suggesting to me that I may want to go ahead and complete the natural consequence of the release of internal  tensions freed by sawing.

Glut & commodore @ hand
Glut & commodore @ hand, my splitting can begin

Looking at the natural split, it is clear where things will end up with just a little encouragement from me and my helpers, glut and commodore, axe and froe, with highly usable wood left for the braces I seek.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

And it is so, as the crack exits the side with plenty wood to spare.


Only held up by a few fibers easily severed from on top with a small axe that’s got a long enough reach, so handy for getting down into these splits

Using a froe.

From the other direction where the split has begun, I pry it wider open with froe easing it open by cutting through remaining fibers with axe.

A central section clear and strong.

And I have removed weakened sections and a full length of full strength- that is to say completely intact structure – is left to me.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASawn through the middle the separate brace forms begin to emerge.

Axed to the right thickness and at the same time given a Finnish finish, waves within waves.
A rough placement

The surface created like this is crude and yet suggests interesting possibilities to my eye.


Ernest duBois


6 thoughts on “Splitting

  1. Yes John, using the length of a thick and short axe blade as a gauge for spacing, these are essentially vertical channels across the grain but you can imagine other variations with the same basic theme I think. The idea is coming out of Finland and is a display of a disciplined axing technique rather than the more common free-form technique out of Sweden.

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