Sunday, November 21, 2010

Banksia Pods

On our last trip to Exotic Woods in Burlington, we saw some Banksia Pods. Apparently they are a seed, or nut, kind of like the inverse of a pine cone. They are very hard on the inside, but actually kind of furry and brittle on the outside.

This is Natural?

The coolest thing about them is that they have ovoid holes running through the nut that go almost all the way into the center. So, we decided to pick one up and try turning it on the lathe.

After persuading a large family of spiders to vacate, the pod was trimmed on the band saw and then turned and sanded on the lathe into a cylinder.

The Finished Product

The wood inside is very hard and can be sanded to almost a gloss finish. The pod was then cut in half and drilled out to make two small tea light holders.

With Tea Lights

We really like how the light escapes from the holes in the pod. If we ever pick up more, I think that they will be made deeper so that this lighting affect is amplified. Either way, it was a half-hour well spent! I do hope they're fire-proof...