I rough turned this birch bowl about six months ago from a fresh green trunk a friend found for me. At that time, I did not expect much from this bowl thinking that birch is a fairly blond wood without a lot of character.
To expedite the drying process, I soaked this bowl overnight in denatured alcohol then left it to dry in a brown paper bag. Originally, the rough bowl weighed 3,760 grams. In ten days, it lost 952 grams or 25% of its original weight. Then I was distracted by life and did not weigh it again for four months at which time it then weighed 2320 grams having lost 38% of its weight.
To finish woodturning the bowl, I followed a typical process: 1) re-mount to refine the mounting tenon; 2) shape the exterior; 3) reverse onto the tenon to shape the bowl’s interior; 4) reverse again to remove the tenon and form a foot. I power sanded each section after tooling.
After all turning and sanding, I soaked the bowl overnight in walnut oil then drained and wiped off the excess. The bowl now weights 1180 grams — final turning removed nearly half of the wood from the rough blank.
The final bowl is beautiful — far exceeding my original expectations. Natural staining and other coloration really dressed up this bows into a masterpiece. Finished, it is 11 inches in diameter and 5 inches high.