Beer Swap 2018

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Project by RichBolduc posted 09-08-2018 01:52 PM 1549 views 1 time favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Well now that I’m back from Ireland and everyone;s revealed, here’s what I sent to Hokieken for the swap. It all started off with a Pecan tree that someone cut down in February of last year. This wood was and still is somewhat wet, so there was some drying done while it was being turned. This wood also has a lot of insect tunnels in it and insects still living in it. Because of this, I decided to make an attempt at stabilizing wood. This resulted in me also making a pressure pot to attempt to cast pieces.

Because of the insect holes and tunnels, I actually started out with large chunks of the wood and turned them down quite a bit… This was a little strain on the Comet II, and I ended up snapping a belt. Luckily they’re about 10 minutes from me so I just stopped by and grabbed replacement parts… I also want to upgrade to the Saturn or the Galaxi now…lol For the opener and koozie, grooves were cut in them and then filled with red dyed epoxy. I originally tried the opener in a casting with my pressure pot, but the resin wouldn’t get in to all the tunnels and made it a mess when I tried to return it. The koozies were the 5th and 6th attempt with the bottle opener being the 3rd attempt at one.

As for what I received, Tom Regnier sent me my package. Tom lives a few towns away from where I grew up in MA, so it was like getting a package from home. He sent my some Tree House Brewing Co. Beers, a bottle openers which i’m still trying to figure out the wood on and a piece of wall art that’s in the shape of a hops that he carved the detail in to

Some of the fails besides the initial casting attempts above.

Let me know if anyone wants more pics of my stabilizing set up or casting setup. Or any questions on anything else I did. I have a bunch more pictures for this too

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11 comments so far

View mikeacg's profile


2050 posts in 2348 days

#1 posted 09-08-2018 03:07 PM

I am fascinated by the stabilization process (You forced me to go out there and study what you were talking about) but I have way too much on my plate to even consider adding anything else to my shop. I will keep watching and if I ever get caught up I hope you won’t mind questions at that point! One of the really cool things about this forum is the mix of skill sets displayed on a regular basis and the generosity of everyone with their time in answering questions!
The wood looks fantastic finished and you certainly surprised all of us with the quantity of brews you sent to Kenny (Yes, I want you to get my name next beer swap!!!!)...

-- Mike, A Yooper with a drawl,

View RichBolduc's profile


1453 posts in 1407 days

#2 posted 09-08-2018 03:12 PM

Ask away. It’s actually a lot easier than expected. I’m lucky enough to be low enough elevation that I can pull a really good vacuum. Setup wise, you’re looking at about $150-$200 depending on what size pot you want. I went with a 5 gallon pot so I can do larger pieces, only down side from what I read about a pot this size is it takes a little more time to get all the excess air out. One it was in a good vacuum and not releasing anymore air bubbles, I’d let it sit overnight.

The resin is the expensive part at $100/gallon. Luckily it’s reusable. I went through a gallon (bought 1) for this swap and stabilizing other pieces. I now have a gallon of honey left over of the original 2 that I can reuse, but will only use it on darker pieces. That’s part of the reason why the pecan darkened up. Kind of like how whiskey starts out clear then gains color from the barrels.

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View jeffswildwood's profile


4953 posts in 3268 days

#3 posted 09-08-2018 04:16 PM

Nice stuff Rich! You really went all out again and learned some new tricks along the way. Good job.

-- We all make mistakes, the trick is to fix it in a way that says "I meant to do that".

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

8837 posts in 1873 days

#4 posted 09-08-2018 04:36 PM

Nice work, Rich! You made some neat stuff and learned something too!

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 4157 days

#5 posted 09-08-2018 07:31 PM

You did a very nice job on these pieces.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View duckmilk's profile


4876 posts in 2615 days

#6 posted 09-08-2018 09:09 PM

Those look great Rich! Where did you get the liners from? That is a great idea.

-- "Duck and Bob would be out doin some farming with funny hats on." chrisstef

View RichBolduc's profile


1453 posts in 1407 days

#7 posted 09-08-2018 09:16 PM

Look under can cooler… They have all kids of awesome turning kits including wine glasses.


Those look great Rich! Where did you get the liners from? That is a great idea.

- duckmilk

-- 10% off all products with code LJ10

View mikeacg's profile


2050 posts in 2348 days

#8 posted 09-08-2018 09:56 PM

Great site, Rich! Thanks for sharing!


-- Mike, A Yooper with a drawl,

View EarlS's profile


4824 posts in 3639 days

#9 posted 09-09-2018 12:32 AM

Rich – you definitely went outside the box on this one. I like the way everything turned out (yep that was a lathe pun). Kenny has been bragging up the beer and the coozies and opener. Now I see why.

Did you find any bog wood in Ireland?

-- Earl "I'm a pessamist - generally that increases the chance that things will turn out better than expected"

View RichBolduc's profile


1453 posts in 1407 days

#10 posted 09-09-2018 12:53 AM

Thanks Earl. :). I got the beer and the hammer. Those cans have amazing artwork on them and that mallet is art in itself. What kind of wood was mine?

As for the big oak, it’s almost impossible to find in southern Ireland. What is found is often small pieces and carved right away. I do have some coming in that I’m hoping I can turn in to bottle stoppers. Some of the smaller pieces I’ll probably cast then turn. Overall I have 45 pieces coming in with the larger ones I could find heading Ken’s was as his bonus.

You should be expecting a chunk of pecan this week too.


Did you find any bog wood in Ireland?

- EarlS

-- 10% off all products with code LJ10

View HokieKen's profile


19952 posts in 2429 days

#11 posted 09-10-2018 06:17 PM

I have to say this was an exceptional package and I’m mighty happy I received it :-)) There were obviously some growing pains for you on working out the casting and stabilizing but it sure payed off if you ask me. The pieces I received were gorgeous! And I’ve tried several of the beers but there are plenty more waiting! Thanks Rich!

-- I collect hobbies. There is no sense in limiting yourself (Don W) - - - - - - - - Kenny in SW VA

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