Hello and thanks in advance for any tips y’all give me we really appreciate it here!

About 3.5-4 years ago, my wife and I were forced to remove an old mature and pretty Texas Cypress tree from our front yard; the person that planted it made the tree grow too close to surrounding structures and its roots (as Texas Cypress roots like to do going up and down and up and down) grew up under things and started causing issues with their root “knees.”

When this happened, I saved three sections of the tree’s trunk. Each segment is approx 2.5 feet tall and about 2 feet around. The largest is 3 feet tall and 3 feet around with it being slightly larger at the base being the bottom trunk segment. I’ll spare you the story about how fun it was to move these right after the tree was cut — see: 4 guys and freakish heavy!

Anyway, I saved the wood in a pretty protected environment and allowed them to naturally dry out completely. I removed the bark fully after the logs had dried enough. I did not need to use tools for this it removed easily by hand. They have now set for about a year with no bark to ensure they had no signs of bugs or anything else. A couple have some minor 1/4” cracks on the sides running towards the middle but not through the entirety of the segment and not really bad.

Getting on with it.. I was hoping to seal and finish these trunk segments in a way that will allow me to keep them outside to use as stools/chairs out near my smoker and grill. Figured I would hand sand the pieces until extremely smooth first. They are for sure dried out, weigh a LOT less now but still heavy, and have no bark but still need sanding and finishing.

My question to those knowledgeable is what product(s) should I use to treat, seal, and whatever else the trunk pieces in order to protect them from the elements and from bugs? They have a lot of character and while I don’t want to stain them, I want to enhance their natural beauty. If I can get one of them nice enough I thought about adding a small glass top to one for an indoor side table. I figure it would take multiple coats of whatever I should use to make sure any of the natural cracks are filled in and sealed properly. Willing to take time to do it right as would like them to last as long as possible for the memories. 🙂

As a note we live in the Dallas, Texas metroplex so we see a range of weather from not-hyper-hard-freezes to high temps with variable precipitation. The weather is currently shifting into fall where it’s cooler so thought it may be a good time to get this project finished.

Thanks again and let me know if I can provide more info that could help!

—Holy

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