Bodark bowl (reclaimed farm post)

  • Advertise with us
Project by RichardH posted 05-30-2010 05:20 AM 2205 views 0 times favorited 18 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Bodark bowl (reclaimed farm post)
Bodark bowl (reclaimed farm post) No picture No picture No picture No picture No picture
Zoom Pictures

This bowl is about 9 inches in diameter. My father-n-law back in Alabama brought me this nice chunk of bodark. This one is no telling how old, but it made two nice size bowls for me and I have enough left to make a couple of pens.

Bodark is probably more commonly known around woodworkers as osage orange, but the folks I know down south all call it bodark. When we were kids, we called them “stinky ball trees” for big orange like fruits that used to clutter and rot at the base of these trees. They are very rot and pest resistant and the farmers used them as fence posts. A friend of mine had a dog that spent a considerable amount of time burying these things :-)

THis one had a lot of dark colorations that I kind of like. As always, your feedback is welcome!

-- "It's supposed to be hard. If it wasn't hard, everyone would do it...It's the hard that makes it great."

18 comments so far

View Dark_Lightning's profile


3757 posts in 3717 days

#1 posted 05-30-2010 05:23 AM

Man, I gots to get me a turning machine and lose the rest!

-- Steven.......Random Orbital Nailer

View a1Jim's profile


117909 posts in 4186 days

#2 posted 05-30-2010 05:37 AM

wonderful bowl with great color an neat wood


View Bearpie's profile


2601 posts in 3626 days

#3 posted 05-30-2010 06:03 AM

Nice turning there Richard, I have not had the opportunity to turn osage orange. It looks like a fine wood to work with?

Erwin Jacksonville, FL

-- Erwin, Jacksonville, FL

View Dusty56's profile


11856 posts in 4296 days

#4 posted 05-30-2010 06:21 AM

Very nice shape , grain , and color…do you have any more pix to show us ?

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View imallchalkedup's profile


393 posts in 3590 days

#5 posted 05-30-2010 06:40 AM

Very nice bowl, Yes, Osage orange also is a top choice of Bow wood along with Yew and a few others, Bow makers take Osage orange and “chase the ring” as they call it, Keeping the seperating the latewood from the early wood and leaving the late wood as the back of there bow to prevent splitting. I have a stave of Osage orange myself that I intend to make a bow of sooner or later.

-- RStadler

View Eagle1's profile


2066 posts in 3673 days

#6 posted 05-30-2010 11:39 AM

Nice looking bowl. I am just starting to finish up a bowl I turned yesterday, made from Osage Orange. I willl post pics when I get it finished.

-- Tim, Missouri ....Inside every older person is a younger person wondering what the heck happened

View michelletwo's profile


2783 posts in 3624 days

#7 posted 05-30-2010 12:52 PM

real nice eatin’ bowl

View OttoH's profile


891 posts in 3618 days

#8 posted 05-30-2010 01:24 PM

I love the grain pattern on this bowl, it really sets it off nicely, and that bit of detail that you put on the rim adds to the beauty, great job!

-- I am responsible for how I respond to everything in my life - - Deadwood SD

View Terry's profile (online now)


206 posts in 4242 days

#9 posted 05-30-2010 01:59 PM

How were you ever able to cut an old fence post? I remember helping my dad take out a couple miles of fence in the mid 60’s. He was going to cut them to length and burn them in the fireplace. The wood was so hard the chainsaw would not cut them. He and the old man that owned the farm estimated that the posts had been in the ground at least 50 years.

You did a great job. Its a good looking bowl.

View BarbS's profile


2434 posts in 4694 days

#10 posted 05-30-2010 03:01 PM

Beautiful bowl.. I have a piece of osage orange sitting, becuase after hearing other turners comment on its density and hardness to turn, I’m afraid of ruining it! Guess I’d better bite my lip and go at it. Yours is lovely.


View RichardH's profile


295 posts in 3611 days

#11 posted 05-30-2010 03:23 PM

Thanks everyone.

Dusty, I’ll post some pics of this bowl’s sister next week as it is sitting at my desk at work. I shipped this one off to my mother-n-law as a gift.

Imallchalkedup, I’ve heard that this wood was a top choice for bows and I believe it – it is strong. I’ve never made a bow, but would love to give it a shot sometime just for fun.

Terry, you made me laugh – one old farmer I met who was talking about bodark said that you plant the post in the ground and put a big rock on top…when the rock has disintegrated, it is time for a new post :-)

Barbs, don’t be afraid of it, I thought it turned great – part of the great thing about some of the harder woods is how clean and smooth it cuts AS LONG AS (1) your tools are very sharp and you touch them up through the process and (2) take fairly light cuts along the way. Only one more tip – the most annoying part of working with this wood is that fine orange dust might as well be orange dye – your hands will be bright orange for a few days after sanding it!

-- "It's supposed to be hard. If it wasn't hard, everyone would do it...It's the hard that makes it great."

View Hix's profile


161 posts in 3886 days

#12 posted 05-30-2010 04:41 PM

Great looking bowl. I love turning it both green and dry.

-- ---call me---- Mark

View WoodArtbyJR's profile


428 posts in 3573 days

#13 posted 05-30-2010 05:07 PM

Very beautiful Richard. I tried some of this and miscalculated the thickness and it exploded on me. I thought it turned very nicely and can’t wait to get another piece to turn. The striping reminds me of myrtlewood and its coloring. The coloring along the crack also reminds me of certain bug infestation where the bugs excreations discolors the wood and gives it characture (like the ambrosa). Very unique and very beautiful. Nice job.

Like you told Barb, ‘Go for it’. There’s a bowl inside there just waiting to jump out and be freed.


-- Jim Roberts, Port Orchard Washington

View scrappy's profile


3507 posts in 4039 days

#14 posted 05-30-2010 10:21 PM

Fantastic bowl. Simple lines and a wonderful wood. Nice detail to the rim.

Keep it up.


-- Scrap Wood's the best...the projects are smaller, and so is the mess!

View 4woodturning's profile


187 posts in 3590 days

#15 posted 05-31-2010 05:46 AM

Very nice bowl, great finish, simple design to allow and show the natural beauty of the wood.

-- Jeff, Missouri ,"Just because your not bleeding, dont mean your turning safely!"..............

showing 1 through 15 of 18 comments

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics