I have several larger pieces of Cherry burl (2' diameter each) that have the bark still intact. These pieces have been drying for several years.

My intent is to cut them into blanks and cast with a resin into a hybrid blank. Because of this, I'd like to only remove the bark and leave the contours of the live edge intact. I also have the advantage where I do not need the full burl intact as a large piece (if it's easier to cut first and remove the bark from smaller pieces).

I've read in several places that a pressure washer can be used for this purpose, but my concerns are safety and risk of the wood cracking due to being introduced to moisture and drying again after years of being dry.

  • If you don't want it to get wet you could try sandblasting it. Just be prepared for the media to get everywhere. Nov 7 '18 at 21:29
  • I too would be very worried about the potential for cracking if you get these well-dried burls wet, especially that wet. I recently saw an old tool handle which was dirty and a bit weathered but otherwise in good shape crack badly all over after drying following being scrubbed clean under a running tap. Anyway that aside, I wonder if the pressure-washer technique is actually more applicable to when the wood is green?
    – Graphus
    Nov 8 '18 at 6:14

You can use a dull chisel to remove the bulk of the material, being careful not to cut into the wood, then use a flap sanding wheel to remove the rest of the material to clean up the edge.

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