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Upcycling Elm Roadkill

How lucky am I? Constantly needing material for my woodturning practice, I always keep an eye out for wood I can salvage and convert into objects that will enhance the interior décor of someone’s home. So when people ask what my favourite wood is, I say “free wood!”

Knowing that I like to recycle wood, friends now tell me when they see timber that might be of interest, or better still, bring it to me!. Last week a text message told me a piece of wood had been left near my back gate by a friend as he made his way home from work. I grabbed a trolley, opened the gate and there was a branch section of elm about 350mm diameter with a growth on its side… I liked what I saw and could hardly wait to cut it open, and gee, was I excited with every saw cut. The wood just got more and more interesting with figuring that became increasingly intricate the further I went.

Now I just need to get it on the lathe and develop designs that make the most of every piece… Cutting the centre out of a round bowl form will help maximise this precious branch of wood so I can make more bowls rather than shavings, fingers crossed!

By the way, where did this wood come from? It was trimmed from a tree that was interfering with overhead powerlines close to my location in Macleod. The wood was left as firewood, and thanks to my friend, it can live forever rather than provide a couple of hour’s warmth in a fireplace.

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