After seeing Pascal Oudet from France at the AAW symposium demonstrate, I came home to try it myself. I hoped to replicate the look and feel of his project. Pascal also sand blasts and bleaches many of his projects.
However, I used fresh wet ornamental pear while he used French oak. The choice of wood, I think makes a difference for this project. Oak has more pronounced grain with hard and soft rings. Oak is also a tough wood that holds together well. On the other hand, the pear was more uniform and probably not as tough.
Next time, I try this, I’ll use oak or another wood with definite hard and soft rings.
Essentially, I mounted the wood while I cut a mounting tenon. Then cleaned up the live center side. Then gradually cut back on wood next to the headstock until I had a disk about 1/8 inch thick. Wet wood is flexible and already warping by the time I turned down to the center. I bleached my disks but did not see that sand blasting would have the same effect as on oak.
It was a wild experience. On my third try, I completed a disk that was intact. However, as it dried, it warped as expected and cracked not as expected. While bleaching the wood, it cracked even more.
Music: Traumerei by Shumann performed by Becky Schlappi. Used with permission.