Padauk Thorny Vine Hourglass

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Project by JohnGreco posted 01-11-2011 12:19 AM 2667 views 1 time favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is an hourglass I was commissioned to make recently, based on a tattoo my customer has of an hourglass with a thorny vine growing up the spindles.

I gave each spindle a unique design element besides just vines and thorns, my favorite being in the first shot where the vine has ‘grown off’ of the spindle using the negative space to add visual interest.

The entire piece was given a solid week of UV exposure to speed up the patina and finished with tung oil.

Thanks for looking!

-- John

11 comments so far

View Chip's profile


1904 posts in 5098 days

#1 posted 01-11-2011 12:31 AM

Unique and beautiful work John. Was the carving difficult, take long? Looks great… well done.

-- Better to say nothing and be thought the fool... then to speak and erase all doubt!

View JohnGreco's profile


284 posts in 4061 days

#2 posted 01-11-2011 02:47 AM

Thanks, Chip. The time to make the spindles decreased with each one, but overall it took a while. I had a few thorns snap on me, they were getting caught on my carving glove a lot.

-- John

View dakremer's profile


2756 posts in 4097 days

#3 posted 01-11-2011 03:14 AM

That’s a really good looking hour glass! Very cool carvings

-- Hey you dang woodchucks, quit chucking my wood!!!!

View sras's profile


5865 posts in 4135 days

#4 posted 01-11-2011 03:28 AM

Impressive carvings – nice to hear of the tattoo inspiration as well. I assume the padauk was a challenge to carve.

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View JohnGreco's profile


284 posts in 4061 days

#5 posted 01-11-2011 02:42 PM

Thanks :) The Padauk was no harder than carving with Maple or most other hardwoods, though the slightly open grain did cause a few headaches along the way.

-- John

View Scott Michael's profile

Scott Michael

68 posts in 4402 days

#6 posted 04-16-2011 07:25 PM

hi John.

Was curious as to where you purchased the hourglass blanks…........I’ve made a few but can’t find the hourglasses any more.

-- scmichael

View JohnGreco's profile


284 posts in 4061 days

#7 posted 04-16-2011 07:40 PM

I got a few from woodcraft when they were on clearance, but it looks like rockler carries them now.

-- John

View spunwood's profile


1202 posts in 3841 days

#8 posted 08-10-2011 03:56 AM

Wow. This is so cool.

-- I came, I was conquered, I was born again. ἵνα ὦσιν ἓν

View JohnGreco's profile


284 posts in 4061 days

#9 posted 08-10-2011 03:39 PM


-- John

View jstevensonkenney's profile


6 posts in 3237 days

#10 posted 08-02-2012 05:06 AM

Very cool! I made one with the same or similar hourglass bulb (from Rockler). Hardest part seemed to be sizing the posts. Too long, and the hourglass would wobble. Too short, and it would be cracked. I used 1/2 in. dia. brass, and didn’t want to cut and try (then grind) too much. So I erred on the size of too long and used some clear RTV (the special type used for glass block cement) to hold it in place. Any advice?

Thanks for the tip on the UV patina. Didn’t know you could do that with artificial light. What lamp did you use?

View JohnGreco's profile


284 posts in 4061 days

#11 posted 08-02-2012 12:11 PM

Thanks, j. For this particular piece I sat it in the sun for the UV exposure, but I have used tanning beds in the local tanning salon for some Cherry pieces. Got some crazy looks :p

To eliminate wobble, try heading to lowes and get some rubber grommets to slip over the ends of the hourglass. They should be in their specialty hardware section.

-- John

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