I've used Tagua nuts...cool ivory like look when
finished. If you are interested in hearing more about
them let me know.
yes I am !
Okay, here is the little I know.
I am not talking about Tortuga nuts, but for all I know they
could be the same thing!
I got these at a specialty woodworking shop, the kind that sells
fancy burly chunks of wood for turning and specialty equipment.
They had this bowl of hairy nuts in oval types of shapes anywhere
from 1"-3" in diameter and a little flattened. I had no idea what
they were so I had to buy a few. Pretty cheap, a buck or so each.
They are HARD! I was told to work them like wood so I sawed,
drilled, filed and sanded...but they are way harder than the
average wood. I actually ended up burning them by pushing some
power tools beyond their endurance. Sand them and polish like
wood, even used a little stain to accentuate areas I left rougher
or recessed...also painted on it. If you asked about scrimshaw
ink (and some of you did) I honestly don't know but they are
certainly cheap enough once you find them to experiment.
Some people call it vegetable ivory because that is really what
it looks like finished. A little off white with that surface hint
of transparency that makes ivory special. Drawback is you can't
get a very large chunk out of the nut...those of you who order
clothing from "natural" sources may have them as buttons on some
of your clothes.