Here we go- my first tut as per special request. Hope it's reasonably easy to understand! If not, feel free to ask away. :)
It's quite easy to get started- this piece is based on a 12 1/2" Sono tube. Decide how long you want your tree to be, but be aware that leaving it too long will be cumbersome.
We used a hand saw to put an angled cut on the bottom to lean the tree around 10 degrees. Then about 52" up the trunk make a dark line around the circumference, with a large hatch mark 180 degrees from each other. Then make another cut through the line between 10 - 15 degrees. Don't go any steeper than that. (I'll explain later). Now that you have severed pieces, you will notice that they are oval not round. So place the short section on the top of the long, rotate and line up the two hatch marks you made before. Now the ovals should lay on each other fairly evenly. Now get in touch with your inner Red Green and reattach the sections with duct tape, and then again with layers of strip paper mache for strength.
Here's why you don't go too steep on the angle, the photo isn't the actual tube I ended up using... after cutting and lining up the hatch marks we decided that the lean ended up being too severe and the tree too short. As you can see, the jagged detailing at the top has already been added.
This is an edge on end view of the wood needed, 2x6x8-1/2. It shaped by a hand planer to reasonably match the curve of the sonotube inner wall. I know what you're thinking, why bother? I'll just put a 2x6 in and it will work. Sure it will. But it will also only be in contact at two points, whereas this exquisitly shaped piece gives full support with more weight distribution. On the outside I placed a 3/4x2x6 to further support the arm. Over tightening will inevitably distort and crush your tube and bark. Plus it looks better. See comparitive image.
As you can see the block on the left that you took such time to craft sits flush in the tube and will give better support, far better than brand "X" on the right.
When the rods are placed through the holes of the support blocks, use a washer and a 5/16 nut to hold it in place. Tighten down but, do not over tighten as you will crush the bark.
|finished tree, no lighting|