For the next stage of the project I used my favorite carving tool... an air powered die grinder. I have a variety of bits for the powerful little tool. For this project I chucked up the biggest one. Although 30 lb Precision Board is tough it grinds up in a hurry with the right tools.
It didn't take long to go over the edges of the sign, removing the glue lines, evening things out and adding texture at the same time. As always the bottom edge was the most tedious so I got that out of the way first. I timed the back just for fun and it only tool a few seconds over seven minutes to pull off the entire back face. I know if I had wanted it perfectly flat I would have spent a lot longer on the project! Even then there's always a small imperfection or ding that seems to drive me crazy. In my opinion the sign looks even more massive because it appears to be hand hewn from a solid piece of wood. The textures set our work apart from what everyone else does too.
I went over the screws to make sure they were countersunk a little more and then I filled the holes with a bit of sculpting epoxy... no sanding necessary on this project because of the texture. Then it was time to break out the welder once more to form up the structure for the base. I used 1/4" pencil rod. A simple grid was welded up. We use this same technique to form all manners of wild creations. In this case it was a simple box, slightly tapered to be wider at the bottom. It's pretty simple stuff.
Next time I'll show how I get the base ready for the rock work... stay tuned.