So, over the decades, I have accumulated a lot of Fan Blades, (from hanging my new fans and other people’s). Rain through a window in back actually damaged a dozen once, so I tossed them, but I still have a couple dozen that were in the inner workroom.
Decided to see if they were a cost effective resource. Looking at the prices on-line, I could see $10 to $15 for a cheap set of 5, and this compares well with 1/4 inch hardwood. These are tapered, 5 to 6 inch wide at 20+ inches long, so a goodly plank.
BUT, while examining the on-line ones, they are all MDF with a veneer face. So that meant I needed to tear into these old blades and see what I really got.
Sure enough, the one checked was MDF on both sides of a wooden core and thick veneers on the outer sleeve. So the pricing would have to compare to MDF costs, not hardwood planks.
Okie Dokie, it all burns, so on to phase three. I had already made a 1/4 basswood Dragon and Phoenix medallion from an image I had found in stock pictures and manipulated for a deep engrave, so I tried it on a fan blade.
It was harder to cut through than the basswood, but the engrave detail came out fine. Even though the basswood one has not been cleaned yet, you can see the details are similar.
End story, I like the basswood better because it cleans up well and cuts through with less fuss, but if all you got are a bunch of old fan blades, then you are golden. The blade does not want to warp up as much as 1/4 wood when cleaning, so there is that.
Anything that requires a beefy stock will do well with these.
If nothing else, I got a lot of scrapper stuff to experiment on.