work in progress - bowl form in queensland red mahogany burl by bob gilmour, australia

Seven or 8 years ago, I purchased a number of burls cut from cleared timber by a salvage contractor in Julatten, Far North Queensland, Australia. The burls ranged in size from small'ish to quite large. This work in progress piece is emerging from one of the smaller burls from a Red Mahogany (Eucalyptus pellita) tree. I was drawn to this one by it's complete natural edge and lack of fire damage. The solidity and very nice perforations were also a drawcard.

work in progress - fine bowl form taking shape in queensland red mahogany burl by bob gilmour, australia

Red Mahogany here in far North Queensland is also known as Red Stringybark ... and one of the dominant features of the wood, other than it's deep rich red colour, is the usual inclusion of large amounts of sap/resin veins. In burled timber of this species, the resin veining creates voids in the wood which in turn result in perforations through the wall of any vessel form created from it. These voids and resin inclusions create a large amount of interest in burl forms.

work in progress - organic freeform bowl in red mahogany burl

The accompanying pictures show the work immediately following the first major coarse sanding stage. At this point, the resin voids have all been mostly cleared of loose resin and stabilised with cyanoacrylate. The form is ready for the next several sanding stages through to the medium abrasive grits. Along the way, any resin voids that need some extra stabilising work will be attended to and the whole piece will get an all-over coat of penetrating epoxy about halfway through it's sanding process to "tie everything together". The eventual finish treatment will be a rag-burnished gallery standard penetrating clear oil finish.

work in progress - freeform bowl in red mahogany burl

The rough form of this bowl form has been sitting in my temperature controlled heated drier for about 5 years. I thought it was about time it came out to receive it's finishing process and go out and find it's life home.

work in progress - freeform bowl in red mahogany burl

Dimensions :: 27cm x 21cm x 9cm (10.6” x 8.3” x 3.5”).

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