Wood Grain (Growth Rings) and Sandcarving

Unlike many other materials, when sandcarving wood there is a strong interaction between the material and the process. The growth rings in the wood (otherwise called the grain) comprise alternating softer and harder material.   The softer material behaves more like a blast mask and resists etching.   The harder material is more easily removed.   As a consequence of this, after sandblasting, the surface of the wood can exhibit ridges, corresponding to the grain pattern. The images below show a design etched into the lid of a myrtle wood box.  The etched areas exhibit a relief resulting from the wood grain.  The blasted areas of this box lid were stained with a dark walnut stain prior to removing the blast mask.

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While the ridges can in some cases be objectionable, they can also be used for effect.  How pronounced they are depends on the type of wood.  More on this in a subsequent blog …….

Custom Etching and Engraving