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March 24 2003 at 4:51 PM
Brett  (Login BVAN)
from IP address

What a bunch of talented people you are!! I have been surfing for a year before I got the nerve to try my first bear, not bad for my first. Now I am on my second, I use a STILE MS-170, 14'' BAR. anyway, I sure could use some advice on finishing. On my first bear I used 3 different stains, light, med. dark. Do most folks paint or stain?? I am probably giving to much info and asking silly questions but please understand I'm just getting started!! Any input on any aspect of chainsaw carving would be appreciated!! Thank you all, BE CAREFUL and GOOD CARVING!

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(Login GratefulDad)

finishes, etc

March 24 2003, 6:51 PM 

Hi Brett!
tough question to answer. Paint works, stain works, and a lot of people burn carvings with a torch for color as well. Oils, urethanes, and varnishes are also popular. Boiled linseed oil cut with a little mineral spirits is a common base coat, but some swear by sanding sealer instead. Spray paints are popular as well.

A lot of carvers consider the MS170 a little under-powered for carving, but you don't need a lot of power to carve, just to carve faster. Look into a quarter or dime tip carving bar, and 1/4 inch pitch chain (you also have to replace the sprocket) for doing finer detail work.

You might want to check the get the serial number off of your saw and check the stihl web site, there was a recall notice for ms170 and ms180 saws regarding a potential fuel leak. http://www.stihlusa.com/recall/recall_MS170_180C.html

Hope that gets you started.


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(Login BVAN)


March 26 2003, 10:39 PM 

Steve, thanks a bunch for the input!! I'm gonna keep asking questions, I really do intend to get good at this! Like I said before, I have been looking at carvings fo at least a year trying to get up the nerve to try. Still havn"t seen anyone carve. I'm sure it would help to see someone do it in person!! I guess so far I'm learning the hard way!! Looks like my second bear is gonna be better than my first, PROGRESS!! Anyway, since I have your ear, another question... is there any trick to keeping my carvings from splitting?
I live on 3 heavily wooded acres, mature trees... I'm using whatever gets blown down, oak, ash, hickory.
My first bear was done from a shagbark hickory that I lost in a storm, it split really bad. Ok, ok, I know I'm becoming a pain so I'll let you answer these questions before I ask more!! By the way, in case your interested I'm not trying to sell anything, I just think it is a lot of fun to do! Any way, there isn't a lot else to do in Indiana!!

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(no login)


March 24 2003, 7:59 PM 

invest in the proper safety equipment. I should have said that first.


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(Login wayneguyer)

Question of many answers

March 25 2003, 3:47 PM 

There are a whole bunch of good ways to finish your carvings. I guess it depends on what you are looking for. For our small inside stuff we normally burn and brush, then a good coat of sanding sealer and a few coats of poly. Sometimes we use stain, that depends on the desired color.
For our race car drivers we use exterior gloss latex paint, then a coat of laquer.
I would suggest that you look in or all of the carvings that are posted, then ask the carver what method he used if you like the piece. Most of the guys and gals on here are very helpful.
Most important, plan on being in Ridgway for the 2004 Vous.

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