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Pet Urn

Discussion in 'Woodturning Discussion Forum' started by Randy Anderson, Oct 3, 2020.

  1. Randy Anderson

    Randy Anderson

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    My neighbor saw my recent attempts at hollow forms and has asked me to make some pet urns for one of her relatives. I've heard of people making them but have no idea if there is anything special or unique to consider. If I turn it green how do I fit a lid on a non round opening that will seal? Do you only turn them from dry material? Twice turn so you can true up the opening? Anything special on the inside to be done? Growing up in the country, pet urns are not something I know anything about. I've looked at images online and wow, they can be very elaborate and ornate.
     
  2. John Torchick

    John Torchick

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    The latest issue of the AAW magazine has an article on this, using a two piece turning. Basically, for people, one cubic inch for each pound of body weight before cremation.
     
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  3. Dean Center

    Dean Center

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    It's hard to find or generate a dry spindle blank in a size large enough for a big dog or a people. Twice turned allows for larger urns, but then you have to plan ahead as it will take you 6 months to get the blank dry and you have to guess what shape you're going to want to make. Then when the #$%^ wood cracks in drying, you get to pull all your hair out (which maybe won't be a problem for you, Randy. ;)) Then there's, screw on lid or glue on lid? Overall, it's a whole bucket of dilemmas.
     
  4. hockenbery

    hockenbery AAW Advisor Staff Member

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    One option is to once turn an urn and add a collar and top from dried wood after the urn has dried. Collar and a finial top are popular methods.
    or hollow through the bottom an use this for the opening with a decorative plug.

    many urns use a threaded top However it can be glued in
    If the opening is in the bottom it can be held in with screws and silicon sealant to make the fit tight.
    There are sources for threaded inserts for urns usually Brass. There was thread here that listed some
     
    Emiliano Achaval likes this.
  5. hockenbery

    hockenbery AAW Advisor Staff Member

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  6. Chris Lawrence

    Chris Lawrence

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    The guy from walnut to antlers was a great guy but sadly he recently passed away. His son is going to take over making the inserts but it will be awhile until he builds up a stock. Lee valley sells threaded inserts but they are small. You can turn down an abs cleanout and plug to make threads as another option.
     
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  7. Richard Coers

    Richard Coers

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    I turn them thin from green wood. I use John Jordan's technique of blowing high pressure air at the wood to blow out any free water left around. I let it dry a few days and with a friction drive in the opening and with a steady rest, I turn a thin dovetail tenon on the bottom. I turn it around and grip the dovetail and use a steady rest. Bore out the opening to make it true, and epoxy in a black ABS fitting for the threads. Turn a lid, and epoxy on the male thread. 5 for 5 so far. This one was for my Mom, our sweet Irish Rose.
     

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  8. Emiliano Achaval

    Emiliano Achaval Administrator Staff Member

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    It with great sadness that I have to tell you that Rick Brantley lost his battle with cancer. He owned www.fromwalnuttoantlers.com and made the best brass threaded inserts. His son will try to continue to make the inserts. He has a full-time job but will try to keep the small business going.
     
  9. Randy Anderson

    Randy Anderson

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    Thanks. All of the info seems to answer the biggest question I had of dealing with the opening and a seal. Now need to confirm she really wants them before I invest in the HW and time.
     
  10. Clifton C

    Clifton C

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    Here is the make your own version for brass inserts from an earlier thread.
    Here is a image of a closet spud, I just use part of the threads and the hex nut...
    closet-spud-963.jpg
     
  11. Don Wattenhofer

    Don Wattenhofer

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    The making of cremation Urns weather it be for human or pet should be the same rule of 1 cubic inch volume per pound of live weight. I did have a capacity problem for our springer spaniel "Shelby" but I don't think the crematorium reached a high enough temperature to break down the bones so the left over will go into some of the holes she dug.
    9094KUrn.JPG This urn could (was) used for a pet (Shelby) or a keep sake urn where the family splits the ashes between the children of the deceased
    The urns that I make all have a threaded lid where the treads are cut into the same wood. The interior does not require any thing special, however the morticians don't like small openings. When I turn from solid wood (usually with the pith included) I rough turn first then take then the necessary precautions for controlled drying, which will take between 6 months and a year. Note: there was a recent thread about turning end grain hollow forms that covered many of the same points.
     
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  12. John Torchick

    John Torchick

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    The bones aren't burned...they remain after all the organic tissue is vaporized. The "ashes" are the bones after they are processed into a powder in something like a Cuisinart. There was a program on one of the educational channels on TV about mortuary science. It was very interesting and educational to dispel many "ideas" that are formed.
    My parents were cremated.
     
  13. Don Wattenhofer

    Don Wattenhofer

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    We all know that when wood dries it shrinks and distorts so how are you ever going to fit a threaded collar, which of course must be reasonably round enough for the threads to work, onto or into a distorted once turned piece.
     
  14. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    Like Al said, the collar is turned from dried wood. The collar doesn't thread onto the urn, it is just glued onto the urn after the urn has dried and the hole trued up and sized for the collar. A threaded plug sized to match the threaded hole in the collar is turned from dried wood.
     
  15. Don Wattenhofer

    Don Wattenhofer

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    Who said anything about threading the collar onto the urn all I said was into or onto maybe I should have said glued into or onto.
    Please excuse me but I think of a once turned piece as being thin walled without enough material to be "trued up".
     
  16. hockenbery

    hockenbery AAW Advisor Staff Member

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    I glue inserts in before drying the once turned form. Also turn the insert to match the forms.
    A 3/16 inch wall will take light turning to fit the insert.

    CA or 5 minute epoxy will hold it fine.

    a 2” insert won’t affect the drying .
     
  17. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    It seemed to me that is what you said ... see the red highlighted quote from your prior post.

    Regarding the thin wall, I said "true up the hole" not the wall, but it probably isn't necessary to true up the hole if the collar is wide enough to cover the oval hole.
     
  18. Richard Coers

    Richard Coers

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    I use ABS pipe fittings. As with all pipe thread, it is tapered and pretty loose at the start where I take the threaded parts from. Plenty to snug down the lid and also provide a little give. I don't anticipate the customer will be taking the lid on and off all the time to look at the ashes. No problems with the ones I've made.
     
  19. Randy Anderson

    Randy Anderson

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    Well, what seemed like a simple request from my neighbor has gotten more complicated than it first appeared. Thanks for the info here. Seems multiple ways to approach the biggest challenge - a sealed lid. Not sure yet what approach I'll attempt. I did look at some plastic pipe thread pieces I have laying around that are a good size so good to know an option. Correct, assume they won't be taking on and off but have to deliver with it off and I have no desire to be involved in sealing it up after delivery.
     
  20. Don Wattenhofer

    Don Wattenhofer

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    All that red highlighted text said was fit into as in true up an opening to glue or otherwise attach the insert into. s
     

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