My family just chopped down an old silver maple tree in their backyard. It has some great branches that are about 2-3 inches. We thought that slicing them and cutting them up into thinner pieces to make a some nice drink coasters.
The plan is to have a nice bare tree look with them. The bark is thin on these in this area. We want it to have a nice natural look, and possibly something to show off the rings of the tree. Nothing dark, nothing that will change the color/hue too much.
There won't be a need to make it food safe, as its just for cups and glasses. They will potentially be used outdoors on the patio. I would like them sealed so they will retain their look for a long time. However, I also don't want anything that will smell (in case they are used in the house or in the enclosed patio room). Something that would also stand up to the elements (to some extent) if they are left out.
My question is do you think that they need any type of finish on them?
And if so, what kind what do you suggest?
Should these also be dried out, and if so for how long before a finish?
I know some of this might be opinion based, and I appreciate everyone's opinion and thoughts on that. Overall, looking for a what works best, and what is a good thought on sealing a wooden coaster that is sliced from a tree branch.