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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
picked up two Y forks today and wanted to venture into the classic way of doing cattys. I only have a few questions about finishing them.

how deep into the wood should i go? i've heard (i forget where) that you should go to where when you scratch the wood with a fingernail, it wont scrape off.

isn't there a process of drying the wood in the microwave?

How do i generally treat it? and is it ok to use a varnish on it (i will be using spar varnish).

Any advice will be appreciated.

thanks,
kyle
 

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here's a link to micro drying and it works but so does tossing the them in the trunk of your car for a while depends on how long you want to wait.
http://slingshotforu...h__1&#entry3200

varnish will work, oil finishes will work, some people prefer no finish.

I just strip the bark off, use something to scrape/smooth it, I've used a piece of quartz, the back of a knife blade, but the thing I use most is the back of a old brass key, then use some poly or varnish...
 

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here's a link to micro drying and it works but so does tossing the them in the trunk of your car for a while depends on how long you want to wait.
http://slingshotforu...h__1&#entry3200

varnish will work, oil finishes will work, some people prefer no finish.

I just strip the bark off, use something to scrape/smooth it, I've used a piece of quartz, the back of a knife blade, but the thing I use most is the back of a old brass key, then use some poly or varnish...
Just a warning when you microwave your fork make sure there is no tiny nails in it, i have just blown the wifes 6 week old microwave up, there was a long thin nail in the fork under the bark, i am now in the dog house, jeff
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
thanks harpers, ill give that a go. i started taking of the bark with a knife. i have to saw it down today, put in some grooves for flatbands, probobly give them a 120-220-320-400 grit treatment and see how i like them without a finish.

and im sorry to hear your misfortune jeff.........
microwaves are know for arcing metals, youve never tried a cd? (it wont break it, but its reallllllly cool to watch!!!!)
 

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dry it before you cut it down to size and do all the work on it, there's always a change it will crack as it dries
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
is there a need to dry out the wood? because i got up this morning and did the work so i dont want it to be wasted when the wood cracks. I mean, its definetly not wet wood, and the limb wasnt attatched to the tree when i found it, but the wood is stil strong and feels smooth and dry to the touch.
 

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It wont necessarily split, but wood can split on the cut ends as it dries, that's why you normally want to cut a fork a few inches longer than you want the fork. was the branch you cut it from dead? if so you might not have much to worry about. Basically wood splits when it dries too fast. I wish I could tell you that it would or wouldn't crack but you may just have to wait and see...I know some people coat the cut ends with wood glue while it's drying, but if you're planning on shooting it right away that wont work.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
it is for sure dead and dry. I put bands on it and shot a few times (kill me, i know). BUT, i was using my "target" band setup. Very quick and nice light pull that works with small light ammo such as 1/4" steel, 3/8" steel, and 1/2" marbles and is incredibly accurate and quiet (i like quiet bands....no i have no idea why...). and i shoot chinese style by nature, bracing the wood with thumb and forefinger. It held up fine, and im very pleased with it. Im gonna take some pics and post a rave about naturals now!!!!
 

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Glad it worked for you, even if you don't want a heavy finish I would suggest sealing the wood with a single coat of varnish or something just to give it some protection, unless you really don't care, otherwise its going to pick up dirt and oils pretty easily.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
hehe, just got back from home depot with some minwax helsman spar urethane, fish's preferred finish i hear. this stuff sounds pretty tuff! but i forgot to pick up a brush
so ill go back tommorrow morning. Im gonna give it 3 coats, thats whats recommended for unfinished or open end wood on the directions. but now im debating whether to give it some color or not...its really gray and boring...
 
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