Flock of Canadian Geese, JGR patterns come to life

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Project by jfk4032 posted 02-19-2013 10:19 PM 3854 views 7 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

These are my first attempts at larger intarsia projects. I previously tackled the frog from KoryK’s LJ online class. These are two of Judy Gale Roberts’ designs and each pattern came with a full size and a smaller pattern. I though it would look cool to put these on a wall as if they were flying in V formation so I made all 4.

I was looking around for the right wood colors and grain for these and found them right around the corner from me. A local sawyer had a beautiful selection of some walnut crotch that had the full swing from sapwood to heartwood back to sapwood. I took advantage of this great color transition on the wings of some of these. I also used hard maple from the local sawyer for the geese breast. I finished these up with some regular black walnut, wenge, ebony and holly. I posted a sequence on SteveW’s recent intarsia post of the technique I’ve been developing for shaping and sanding my pieces …with some help from fellow LJers KoryK and intarsia92. Here it is:

For shaping/sanding I developed a routine with the following steps. I use a pneumatic drum sander (with two spindles one 9” and the other 3” diameters) for hogging off large amounts of wood and then the Guinevere with smaller pneumatic drums for more delicate shaping. I then use a Wecheer rotary tool (dremel like machine) with various sanding drums, flap wheels and carving bits for detail shaping/carving. For some details, I’ll use various files and rasps. Once edge glued together I’ll fill in all of the gaps with glue on the underneath flat surface to prevent glue from seeping up any minute spaces when later gluing to the backer. Then I flatten the underneath side with a SandFlee drum sander. I then sand by hand starting with 120 grit working my way up to finer grits switching to a sanding mop when I get to the 220 grit, and then continue by hand up to 600 grit. I use a wipe on gel satin finish with 3 coats and have been very happy with the finish.

I also incorporated some lathe work into the projects with the eyes. On the larger geese, I turned a piece of wenge to match the face/neck on the lathe to serve as an eye socket. I used a plug cutter to cut the ebony for the larger eye pupils and while on the lathe drilled the hole for the pupils. I also turned some small ebony eyes pegs for the two smaller geese to fit into a drilled hole.

I really like this intarsia art form and with each project I’m learning a lot and getting more efficient, accurate and comfortable with producing them. Next up is a likeness of our Chesapeake Retriever who passed away last month. I took the JGR labrador pattern and modified it extensively to better look like the Chessy breed and changed the mouth area to look like the smile that Pebbles would use to let us know she was happy.

Thanks for looking…

-- ---Joel; Central MD...rookie empter nester and getting back into woodworking!

12 comments so far

View bmcmull's profile


4 posts in 2435 days

#1 posted 02-19-2013 10:24 PM

those look great

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30442 posts in 2850 days

#2 posted 02-19-2013 10:35 PM

Absolutely beautiful

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View intarsia92's profile


118 posts in 2629 days

#3 posted 02-19-2013 10:56 PM

You did an awesome job shaping the Geese. They all look very nice.

-- Intarsia92

View Jim Finn's profile

Jim Finn

2745 posts in 3434 days

#4 posted 02-19-2013 10:59 PM

Very nice! I need to try those patterns myself.

-- No PHD just a DD214

View WoodenFrog's profile


2737 posts in 3426 days

#5 posted 02-19-2013 11:15 PM

I love Ducks and Geese, and these are just Wonderful!!

-- Robert B. Sabina, Ohio.....

View waho6o9's profile


8770 posts in 3089 days

#6 posted 02-19-2013 11:25 PM

The geese look so life like, excellent work Joel!

View  woodshaver Tony C   's profile

woodshaver Tony C

6832 posts in 3865 days

#7 posted 02-19-2013 11:56 PM

Your work is so beautiful!
We have a pond out back and all winter long the Canadian Geese land in the morning and later honk a bunch of honks and then fly off and return the next morning.
Anyway your flock is Awesome! Really fine work!

-- St Augustine FL, Experience is the sum of our mistakes!

View Woodenwizard's profile


1360 posts in 3556 days

#8 posted 02-20-2013 12:55 AM

WOW! Very nice.

-- John, Colorado's (Wooden Wizard)

View Bobsboxes's profile


1370 posts in 3176 days

#9 posted 02-20-2013 02:05 AM

Great looking honkers,reminds me of growing up watching them signal fall and spring.

-- Bob in Montana. Kindness is the Language the blind can see and deaf can hear. - Mark Twain

View deon's profile


2522 posts in 3538 days

#10 posted 02-20-2013 07:49 AM

Great work!

-- Dreaming patterns

View HorizontalMike's profile


7797 posts in 3426 days

#11 posted 02-21-2013 12:29 AM

Wow! very cool indeed!. I love how you brought the ‘flock’ together in flight.

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View dee2's profile


277 posts in 2848 days

#12 posted 04-17-2013 12:55 AM

Great job on these, perfect choice of woods and colors. They look life like, for sure. I’m always pleased with Roberts patterns, they turn out very well.

-- Dee2, OH Aromatherapy....fresh cut wood!!

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