It is most commonly used in accent details, turned objects, knife handles and other small specialty items. Its wood is noted for being strong and durable mostly utilized in construction, carpentry and furniture applications in its indigenous regions. We are direct importers of exotic hardwoods from around the world. Common Uses: Veneer, furniture, cabinetry, turned objects, and other small speciality wood items. Its pleasant light tan coloration has a very pastel look, and certain examples can exhibit a pink or reddish tint. Woodworkers Source started in 1978 to provide the finest hardwood lumber to all types of woodworkers, from beginners getting started with the craft to long-time professionals. Black Cherry is an important domestic hardwood, long associated with fine furniture and a favorite of many master craftsmen. The wood slightly darkens as it dries and will continue to darken with repeated exposure to UV rays. African Walnut is derived from the Lovoa Trichilioides tree — a monoecious, evergreen that is indigenous to Central and Southern Africa’s tropical regions. Despite its generally straight or slightly interlocked, finely-textured grains, this density makes the wood very difficult to work. Some of the more exotic species can be too expensive to use for anything more than an accent. Common Uses: Cabinetry, fine furniture, flooring, interior millwork, veneer, musical instruments, turned objects, and small specialty wood items. It must be worked carefully with only the sharpest of tools. ), African Blackwood is a consistent favorite with acoustic guitar luthiers, wood turners, carvers and fine furniture craftsmen, alike; it remains one of the world’s most coveted musical woods. Some say that it comes from a tree’s reaction to invasion by the larvae of the Agromyzia carbonara beetle, but the general opinion seems to be that it is hereditary, classifying the name of the variant as Betula pendula var. This wood comes from a unique, beautiful looking tree that grows mostly in Zimbabwe. Despite its large natural range and 23 different species, recent surges in popularity in this new millennium have led to some isolated cases of “near extinction” levels of tree population reduction in several Central American regions where it grows. Trees can grow to towering proportions, so the larger specimens are often cut into large, live-edge slabs. Its medium texture and typically straight grains (which can be wavy, also) give it excellent working properties; its cuts, turns, glues and finishes very well and has a moderate natural luster. Its cooperative grain structure and moderate density give Black Walnut excellent working properties, which have made it coveted by fine furniture craftsmen for centuries. Grains are generally straight, though sometimes interlocked. Comments: It turns well, but with its high density and hardness is difficult to work with. Sustainability: This species is not listed in the CITES Appendices, but is categorized as “Near Threatened” by the IUCN. The dark reddish-brown color it exhibits after aging is often imitated through the use of stains on other woods. Its heartwood is a light to medium brown, sometimes with a greenish hue. , Comments: In addition to furniture crafting, Cherry has been used sporadically in guitar building; its exceptional strength-to-weight ratio, stability and durability make it ideally suited for guitar neck or body wood. ), inlay, carving, tool handles, and other turned objects. It’s not much of a stretch to imagine — since bugs have, quite obviously, already penetrated the wood’s surface — that the wood is decidedly non-durable, although it is generally stable enough for use in furniture and guitars. Although it is not considered to be one, such premium-grade specimens can look as luxurious and velvety as of the true satine woods. Its softness and light, rather indescript appearance makes it a favorite among hand carvers, also. (Quartersawn pieces can be very dramatic.) Tropical America. Sustainability: This species is listed in CITES Appendix II and the IUCN reports it as being “near threatened.”. A close cousin to Hawaii’s coveted Koa, Australian Blackwood is growing in popularity as it becomes more known in both guitar- and furniture-building circles. Because of this, you often find pieces of irregular measurements, and — due to the trees’ very thin trunks — which are not very wide. It is a beautiful wood, with heartwood colors ranging from medium to dark brown, quite often featuring green highlights (sometimes in a prominent fashion) which become more pronounced as the wood ages and is increasingly exposed to UV rays. Comments: Chechen has endured a stigma which is actually a commonly held fallacy — one powerful enough to generate its nickname, “Black Poisonwood” — that working with this wood is dangerous. Its texture is similar to African Mahogany, being slightly open grained with large pores. (Although sharp blades may be necessary with some interlocked-grain boards.) Rarely do trees exceed 50 feet in height at full maturity, although if left undisturbed they have been known to reach levels of 90 to 100 feet. There are a few different types of wood which are known as Pau Ferro: the most common one is also known as Bolivian Rosewood, and Morado. Despite its relatively light dried weight (31 lbs/ft3 / 495 kg/m3), once dry it is considered to be dimensionally stable, with excellent durability and easy working properties. Its steady demand there equates to very little of it making it to the US. Its typically fine (sometimes medium or in between), consistent texture takes on a luxurious look, revealing a deep natural luster, when sanded. The lumber it yields has a heartwood which is generally comprised of light to medium golden brown hues (although the brownish hues can sometimes be dark, toward the tree’s center). The Yellow Poplar (Liriodendron Tulipifera) tree is the tallest of all Eastern US hardwoods; the wood it yields is some of the least dense. Comments: Wikipedia had this to say with regard to Dalbergia Cochichinensis: “Siamese rosewood is denser than water, fine grained, and high in oils and resins. Its heartwood is cream to salmon colored, highlighted by striping which can be any combination of red, violet, purple, pink and rose hues. Its seeds easily germinate and take root, so the tree has wound up becoming labeled an “invasive species,” “environmental weed” or “nuisance” in numerous areas scattered across both its indigenous and naturalized regions. Conversely, open-grown trees spread out considerably wider — making them a natural choice for many street and park shades trees. Other than the difficulties in drying, it has good working properties; it machines, turns, glues and finishes well. Its resistance to rot and bug damage and excellent strength-to-weight ratio make it suitable for a variety of indoor and outdoor applications, although its density and typically interlocked grains can make it difficult to work and hard on blades. When sanded and finish-sanded, boards featuring somewhat larger birdseyes can have an almost 3D look — like brown bumps, sitting up on a light golden surface. Alternatively, it is known as the Black Timber, which has been used in making pegs, piano, cello fingerboards, chinrests, violin, bow frogs, and harpsicord keys, among others. Perhaps its density varies greatly, as the latter figure (1326) represents more than a 40% increase over the figure commonly given by US flooring industry sources. Usually its stripes are fairly large and bold — often with twists and overlaps — although occasionally (more desirable) pieces with fine, tight-knit, consistent striping can be found. Its huge popularity and wide range of uses / applications has led it to become overharvested over portions of its natural habitat (on the verge of extinction in some areas); all species of the Podocarpus genus are protected from harvesting in South Africa. The color of the heartwood can vary from a light golden tan to a light to medium brown. That said, the wood is reputed to flourish under difficult growing conditions, so supplies are still accessible. Comments: Sneezewood is considered to be one of the most durable, bug and rot resistant woods in the world, having been classified as “Imperishable” in its native South Africa. Its moderate luster is in keeping with its reputation of being aesthetically bland, although darker accents and occasional figuring are sometimes present. It has a coarse texture, but it will sand smooth and produce a nice natural luster after doing so. Although not a true (Swietenia-genus) mahogany, Santos Mahogany exhibits a lot of the same aesthetic characteristics. It compares well to Brazilian Rosewood (many claim it actually superior), producing a well-balanced acoustic guitar, with great projection and strong lows and highs. Sustainability: This species is in CITES Appendix II, and is listed as “Vulnerable” on the IUCN Red List. Honorable mentions: Muninga (Padauk-relative with rock-solid stability) Boxwood (legendary for turning and carving) Laburnum (think of it as European Rosewood) Wamara (close relative to #2 ranked Katalox) Sycamore (break out of bland with some quartersawn stock) Texas Ebony (Ebony!? The average price is $10 thousand per kilogram. This difference depends on the species and soil conditions. (Its color darkens as it ages.) Other than the knots, the wood poses no difficult challenges for working, glue and finishing. Its heartwood can range from pink to a light to medium reddish-brown, with its yellow sapwood be clearly discerible, when present. Despite its lightweight and modest density, the wood has tremendous dimensional stability. Grains are straight or irregular, and knots are not uncommon. Madagascar Rosewood is a very popular wood with both acoustic and electric guitar luthiers (especially the former), as well as furniture craftsmen, despite being a wood that has been difficult to acquire in the US for the bulk of this new millennium. It is a very popular wood with turners, as it turns and finishes beautifully, and has good working properties. Also worth mentioning is Sonokeling: a true Dalbergia indigenous to Indonesia — where it is also known as “Jacaranda.” Many sources consider this wood and East Indian Rosewood to be of the same species (Dalbergia Latifolia), however tree farmers in Indonesia are not in agreement with this assessment. Our research into Indonesia and the cultivation of rosewood trees there revealed that back in the 1700’s, while the Indonesian islands were considered a colony of Holland, Dutch merchant colonists transplanted two major Dalbergia’s to Indonesia: Dalbergia Nigra (Brazilian Rosewood), from Brazil, and; Dalbergia Sissoo (Indian Rosewood), from India. Both the volume and pattern of its lines are unpredictable, varying greatly from piece to piece. Comments: Black Walnut’s immense popularity among American woodworkers cannot be overstated. Trees are small and slow growing, contributing to its high price tag. Aesthetically, it can be a stunning wood. Cypress is a very tough, moderately priced utility wood. Comments: When (genuine) Lignum Vitae first made it onto CITES’ Appendix II list, Verawood became more well known and popular — commonly used as a substitute. Pod Mahogany is a light reddish-brown wood, indigenous to the southeastern region of Africa. Common Uses: Musical instruments (guitars, clarinets, oboes, etc. Name Money/unit log Money/unit plank Plank Color / … Heart Pine is typically reclaimed old growth pine. Comments: Despite its humorous name — given for the horrid smell the trees put off when first cut — Stinkwood has remained a tremendously popular wood with South African fine furniture craftsmen, cabinet makers and gunsmiths, alike. The wood has a truly beautiful hue to it, making it widely sought after. Louro Preto is closely related to Bocote and Ziricote, also being a Central / South American wood whose species are in the Cordia genus. A World of Wood at Your Fingertips. (Species of the Pyrus Communis tree have been transplanted all over the United States, primarily for its fruit production — the “Bartlett Pear.”) European furniture and cabinet makers utilize it in much the same way as American craftsman do Black Cherry. Common Uses: Furniture, cabinetry, joinery, veneer, decorative trim, plywood, paneling, ship building, fixtures, flooring, pianos, gunstocks, turnings, carvings, fuelwood and utility applications. Grains are typically straight, though sometimes interlocked. Experience has shown that the best drying results are obtained by leaving the wood coated in wax and just patiently allowing it to air dry. Since the beginnin of mass commercial production of the electric guitar, in the early 1950’s, Hard Maple has remained a pivotal lumber in the industry. Despite being rather grainy and pourous, it sands very smooth, revealing a pleasing natural luster. Common Uses: Furniture, cabinetry, turned objects, veneer, musical instruments, boatbuilding, and carvings. (In fact, during the ’50?s and ’60?s, the great flamenco guitar crafters considered it to be the only acceptable substitute to Brazilian Rosewood.). The wood’s very high oil content yields a magnificent natural luster when sanded, although, as would be expected, this characteristic can pose challenges when gluing. In it, they list its Janka Hardness rating as 940 lbf. Combined with its fine texture, it is easy to work (although, like all maples, it can burn easily) — turning, gluing and finishing well, with a good natural luster. Sustainability: Not listed in the CITES Appendices or on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. It is considered to be one of the most dense, stable and durable of all rosewoods. Rare Kingwood and Tulipwood … 1/13/20: Shittim Wood: pen blanks after a 17 month wait. Common Uses: Ship decking, boat building, veneer, flooring, furniture, exterior construction, docks, bridges, carvings, turnings, and other small wood objects. Tulipwood is typically straight-grained, although grains can also be wavy or (infrequently) irregular. For example, cherry wood is orange-colored wood. It also has an historical record of use as a utility wood. Comments: The Acer Pseudoplatanus tree has seen wide naturalization not only due to the wood’s highly desirable status as a tonewood, but, more generally, because of its wide natural canopy — making it ideally suited for use as a shade tree in public parks, bordering public streets and roads, on private residences and other such locations. 10. Depending on the specific species, heartwood colors can range anywhere from a pale yellowish-brown to orangish-red to deep burgundy to a chocolate brown, typically highlighted by bold black ink lines and secondary hues. Indian Ebony is a true ebony which has been commonly used as a substitute for Gabon Ebony, due to its similar aesthetics. Its density falls slightly under the mark of a typical rosewood, while not being near as oily. Common uses: Flooring, millwork, boxes/crates, baseball bats, and other turned objects such as tool handles. Antique Furniture – Types of Wood. *Due to cites restrictions, we are unable to ship Cocobolo internationally. Boards of exceptional quality will command a premium, but still represent a whole lot of ‘bang for the buck’ for an imported exotic wood. In certain applications, it has been dyed black and used as an ebony substitute — although it lacks the requisite density for most musical applications. White oak, the "whiskey barrel" wood, differs from red oak in that it is much less porous. Similarly, a luthier can only craft the best stringed instrument out of the highest quality of wood. White Oak has long been considered one of the preeminent hardwoods of Central & Eastern America. It has excellent tonal properties, despite being grossly overlooked and under-appreciated. It can be difficult to work, although is glues well and is considered a very dimensionally stable species. Comments: The tree is known for its toxic milky latex, that exudes from all parts of it. Because of this, it is rare to find boards of any substantial size without defects; cracks and internal checks and tear-out are not uncommon. Its bark, roots and the latex have been utilized for centuries in concoctions used to treat a variety of medical issues. Its consistence, light color and light density and hardness (bordering on that of a softwood) makes it a popular wood for hand carvings. Its easy, cooperative working properties combined with its consistent texture and color make it loved by craftsmen, carvers and turners, alike. Common Uses: Boxes, baskets, furniture, hockey sticks, veneer, wood pulp, and papermaking. Common Uses: Turned objects, inlays, veneer, fine furniture, musical instruments and small specialty wood items. Comments: Sapele makes a great alternative to Honduran (“Genuine”) Mahogany. While also tauted as a Mahogany substitute, Andiroba is not commonly seen in the US. However, for those few individuals that do choose to take on this project, truly beautiful products are usually made. where out-of-place genera are categorized. Dalbergia. : “When Portuguese ships discovered the trees on the coast of South America, they found that the wood yielded a red dye?which made for a very valuable and lucrative trading commodity. Comments: “Peruvian Walnut” is the name given to a variety of true Walnut (Juglans) species which grow throughout Central & South America. Common Uses: Flooring, furniture, musical instruments, turned objects, carvings, fuelwood/charcoal, fencing, exterior construction and other outdoor utility applications. In optimal conditions, trees can grow to be very large — yielding long, wide boards. Common Uses: Veneer, flooring, furniture, cabinets, trim, musical instruments and turned objects. Its sometimes wavy grain patterns can make it a very aesthetically pleasing exotic wood, as well. 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