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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    wairewa
    Posts
    16

    Default Turning Banksia Cones.

    Brought some Banksia Cones back from WA.
    Any pointers in the pitfalls of turning them up for some small objects.
    Try to pick your brains on this one.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Townsville. Tropical Nth Qld.
    Posts
    775

    Default

    Yep, real messy stuff. I have heard that some guys soak them in water for a few days, let them drain a bit then turn them, not great for your lathe. I just put the fan on high and vacuum up when I am finished. To keep the original bits together after turning, I run diluted sanding sealer into them and finish with Danish Oil.
    Rgds,
    Crocy.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Perth WA Australia
    Posts
    538

    Default

    Depending on how fresh they are they could be filled with all kinds of bugs. They're filled with voids so make sure your chisels are sharp and watch your technique as the cone can catch easily. But like old croc says, they are dusty and make an absolute mess

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    blue mountains
    Posts
    4,142

    Default

    I have only done a couple but like the others say sharp tools and go easy. I first roughed to round to see just what there is to work with before deciding on the shape. I used danish oil as a finish. As to mess mine were dry so not any messier than turning burl. In a lot of ways it is a bit like working with burl.
    Regards
    John

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    Western Australia
    Age
    73
    Posts
    3,171

    Default

    Dust from turning could be carcinogenic ,take all precautions.I have some Bull Banksias growing on my on my property they are all around this area I give the Banksia nuts to the local turners here.Some slice them thinly & make drink coasters out of them
    Johnno

    Everyone has a photographic memory, some just don't have film.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Pluto
    Posts
    72

    Default

    This is link to David's website; included only to show the work he does.
    The pointer: Per David, run some thin CA glue around the solid part of the eye to keep it from separating from the rest of the pod. It also fill in any small cracks around it and helps keep it from chipping. CA should be added just before the last couple of cuts; you want the bulk and the red fluff gone before using the CA. I haven't had any more "eyes" chipping since using the CA.

    Hollow form Banksia seed pod vessels. — David Datwyler

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    wairewa
    Posts
    16

    Default turning banksia cones

    Thank you all for your replies. I have to let them dry before they will be used.
    Will be interesting how it will turn out. Cheers Gary

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    geelong
    Posts
    157

    Default

    s with anything -dry is good. will follow your exploits as have a number of banksia grandis cones. Only tried to turn one as a kind of tube format for the top -vent for a light. It broke away from the lathe part way through the hollowing out. Had some substance to it but was still furry about the mouths (think big bad banksia men) Not necessarily a bad thing. Coasters is probably the most PRACTICAL thing. Find something more interesting ideally.

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