One Tree Woodwork

Custom woodworking and art

Wood ,Water and Heat

So I am working on a very special project that may or may not end in triumph. Something that is above my head and maybe past my current skills but if you don’t occasionally reach past and forge new territory then really whats the point. This is not a boat but a piece of furniture and the homemade steamer I built below is one of the tools I will need to create what is trapped (for now) inside my head. Stay tuned because this will surely end one of two ways and if the first way doesn’t work out then the second way will most likely end in a heap of shattered wood set on fire in the middle of my driveway and the only thing that could put it out will be the tears streaming from my eyes. Ha. Of course my goal in 2014 is to become detached from the outcome and learn how to enjoy the journey regardless of how it ends. This goal also could end one of two ways as well……

Homemade wood steamer made from: 6′ long 6″ pipe, 2- 6″ caps, electric tea kettle, rubber compression fitting, sink tail piece , 3/8″ wood dowels, plywood used as legs, wing and a prayer

Interesting wood fact:
Steam-bent parts have no memory of ever being any other shape, unless immersed in water.




The general idea is that the wooden dowels keep the wood in the center of pipe so that the steam and heat surround the wood evenly. The pipe is placed on a pitch so that the condensation that collects on the bottom of the pipe rolls to the back and exits out of a drain hole in the bottom that has a cup beneath that collects it to be reused. The temp stays at or above 200 deg. The pipe has deformed slightly from the heat but so far has not affected the efficiency.

When you encounter difficulties and contradictions, do not try to break them, but bend them with gentleness and time.

Saint Francis de Sales



5 comments on “Wood ,Water and Heat

  1. Ches
    March 30, 2014

    Please allow for some kind of pressure control or release or something will give, I feel sure. Otherwise it looks good.

      March 30, 2014

      Thanks Ches,
      Your absolutely right about the pressure so far I’ve only steamed a couple of times with it on trial runs. I kind of assumed that the caps since not glued on would pop off before anything else would have time to build pressure . Or do you think I should drill some more holes on top? Open to advice.

  2. Crystal Jackson
    April 1, 2014

    This is even more bizarre/awesome than what I’d pictured. Can’t wait to see how the journey goes.

  3. diydad
    April 23, 2014

    If this steamer works out… I feel a very distracting (but fun) boat project in your future. Been a while since I have checked in with your blog… You have been busy!

      April 23, 2014

      Yea, a boat has been on my list since the last time I built one. Although the last one I built was built from plywood using a modified “stitch and glue” method. It was a small sailboat but a cedar strip canoe I have always dreamed about doing. Thanks for stopping by!

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This entry was posted on March 28, 2014 by in Furniture, General woodworking, Uncategorized and tagged , .


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