Previously i've made a kuksa or wooden cup from a straight piece of beech (http://www.instructables.com/id/Kuksa-wooden-cup/)

Recently i was lucky enough to find a fallen birch tree whilst out canoeing, figuring that nobody would mind i whipped out my rescue saw and harvested a few of the more cup sized burls. 

Burls are growths on the sides of trees that form in reaction to damage, injury or infection. they grow into weird patterns so look amazing once polished up.

Here is how i made a more traditional kuksa from a small birch burl. I've some bigger ones but im leaving them to dry properly and till ive more time to work on them.

Due to the shape and size it ended up as a more decorative object rather than a functional cup, though it could always be used as a shot glass!

As ive tried to before, this was made using only tools i do or could easily add to my wild camping kit without too much hassle.

Tools and materials:
Birch burl
Saw- For harvesting burls (I keep a large toothed plasterboard saw in my boat for emergencies)
Small knife or chisel- For cleaning up the outside of the burl
Small saw or large knife- To remove large nobbles
Hook knife- For forming bowl
Sandpaper (P60-P180)
Drill/ Awl/ Knife- Something to make a hole
Oil and cloth- To polish
Leather and antler scraps

(I apologies for the poor pictures, i ended up using my phone)

Step 1: Burls

The very first step is to get a burl to carve. I've been looking out for some for ages and eventually found some on a fallen tree whilst out canoeing. Using a saw i cut the burls from the trunk right at their bases to get the largest possible sizes.

Seen as it was a fallen tree that was right by the path i assumed nobody would care id i cut off a couple of burls. Obviously never go cutting burls off of live trees (or traipsing through people woods) without the landowners permission.

Once you have your burls pick which one your going to use. Here i used the smallest so that the others have time to dry out properly before i use them, also i wanted something with a quick turnover (just 4 hours to get from burl to pre-boiling stage). 
I just finnished my first one it's kinda like a little bowl with a semi-come pocket

About This Instructable


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Bio: Avid Kayaker, Canoeist, Wildcamper, Amature Photographer, Biologist and Reptile Keeper. Feel free to check out my photography page below.
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