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Wood Identification

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Wood Identification

Image courtesy of Syahmir

Ash, White

Ash and White Ash Identification

White ash is the most common and the largest ash in North America. The principal uses of ash wood are furniture, handles, motor-vehicle parts, barrels and crates, sporting and athletic goods, railroad ties, veneer, and fuel. Strong & shock-resistant, it is used to make oars, pool cues, baseball bats & is the wood of choice for garden tool handles. It has a coarse texture and light brown heartwood and almost white sapwood. Found in Canada & USA.

Birch, American

Birch and American Birch Identification

Birch trees are characterized by a smooth bark that often peels off in thin, papery layers and becomes thick, deeply furrowed, and scaly The yellow birch is the most valuable American birch in number, size, and usefulness. It can reach heights of 100 ft and diameters of 4 ft, and many live to be more than 300 years old. The yellow birch grows as far south as Georgia, but it flourishes most in the cool, moist, northern soils at high elevations of the eastern mountains.

Bocote

Identify Bocote Wood Species

A beautiful tropical hardwood found in the West Indies, tropical America, Africa & Asia. Bocote’s wild figure patterns of black & brown produce stunning work. The wood is only available in small sizes.

Bubinga

Bubinga Wood Species Identification

Very dense, fine grain, purplish pink to salmon red with dark veining are the characteristics of this hardwood from Equatorial Africa. Bubinga is commonly used for turnings, fine furniture cabinetwork & veneers.

Butternut

Butternut Wood Id

White Walnut & Oil Nut are other names for this light to medium brown wood that can be found in Canada & USA. Butternut is a large tree that reaches a height of 100 ft. Used for trim on boats, furniture & carving.

Cedar, Aromatic

Cedar Wood Species Identification

Cedars are evergreen trees belonging to the Pinaceae, or pine family . This Timber contains cedar oil and gives off the familiar “cedar” scent that is said to repel moths. These 2 characteristics are the reason why the wood is frequently used to line closets and chests. Cedar can be found in Canada & eastern USA.

Cherry, Black

Cherry Wood Identification

Other names for this popular hardwood are American Cherry, Wild Cherry & Fruit wood. Cherry has a variety of uses and is one of North America’s finest cabinet & furniture woods.

Cocobolo

Cocobolo Wood Species Identification

A durable, hardwood, cocobolo contains a natural oily substance that waterproofs & makes the wood very easy to finish. It has medium texture, purple, orange, rust and yellow color with black markings, darkening with exposure to deep reddish orange. Found on the west coast of South America.

Canarywood

Canary Wood Species Identification

A yellowish hardwood from South America. The sawdust has a spice like odor. Not a large tree or strong wood mainly used for small turnings and inlay.

Cypress, Bald

Cypress Wood Identification

Normally found in wet regions and swamps, bald cypress is truly at home in water. In fact, it is often used in bridges and docks. Straight grain, oily texture define this yellow – brown wood. Found in the S. E. USA, and used mainly for outdoor posts, poles and decks.

Ebony

Ebony Wood Identification

All ebony is rare and expensive, and becoming harder to find. The tree’s black bark covers a white sapwood, but only the hard brown or black heartwood at the core is the source of ebony. The brittle heartwood comes from India, Sri Lanka & Africa. Dense with a coarse texture, used for brush backs, musical instruments, billiard cues and inlays.

Hickory

Hickory Wood Id

Known for its strength. The hickory is a medium-sized tree native to the eastern half of the United States. Its wood is used for furniture, flooring, boxes, and crates, and as a fuel for smoking meats The heartwood is reddish brown and the sapwood is white. It can be found in Mexico & USA

Holly, American

A white, straight-grained hardwood, American holly, is a slow-growing evergreen tree, can reach heights of 60 ft at maturity. Holly trees can live for 200 years. Holly has many uses but is often dyed black to be used as a substitute for the endangered and very expensive Ebony.

Over 90 Wood Species

Kingwood

Kingwood

Like most rosewoods, kingwood is heavy and very attractive. This timber was used in the finest furniture built for Louis XIV and Louis XV of France. It has a straight grain, fine texture, violet-brown, dark violet and black stripes against yellow to a violet-brown background. Found in Brazil.

Lacewood

Lacewood Species Id

Often called silky-oak, usually straight grain with large rays and reddish-brown color. Lacewood is found in Australia and Brazil and is used for furniture, turning, joinery and veneers.

Locust, Honey and Black

Extremely hard wood, beautiful grain contrast. Sometimes called golden walnut. Not commonly used for mainly because of difficult workability. Resists decay and is very hard.

Mahogany, South American

Mahogany Wood

One of the most valuable South American timbers, used for boat building, fine furniture, pianos, carving, mouldings. Usually straight grained, medium texture, light reddish-brown to medium red color.

Maple, Hard

Maple Wood

Maples are generally divided into two groups: the hard maples, such as sugar maple and black maple, and the soft maples, such as the silver maple, red maple, and box elder. Soft maples grow more rapidly than hard maples, but are brittle and often break in high winds and in ice storms. For this reason the stronger and longer-lived hard maples are preferable as shade trees. Maple wood is used principally for lumber, distilled products, veneer, cross ties, and pulpwood.

Most of the lumber is used for flooring, furniture, crates, and interior finishing. A certain amount of maple wood is crushed or chipped and distilled to produce acetic acid and alcohol. Used in a wide range of construction, including bowling alleys and dance floors. often possessing attractive fiddleback, curly, wormy or bird’s-eye figures. Other uses include turning, sports equipment, musical instruments and butcher’s blocks. Found all over N. America.

Maple, Birdseye

Birdseye Maple Wood

Used in a wide range of construction, including bowling alleys and dance floors. Possessing attractive bird’s-eye figures. Other uses include furniture, turning, sports equipment, musical instruments, butcher’s blocks and veneers. Found all over N. America.

Maple, Spaulted

Spaulted Maple Wood

A stage of decay causes these dark markings on a normally light colored wood. These markings create stunning patterns and contrast. Uses are furniture, boxes, turnings, musical instruments, butcher’s blocks and veneers. Found all over N. America.

Maple, Wormy

Wormy Maple Wood

A stage of decay causes these dark markings on a normally light colored wood. These markings create stunning patterns and contrast. Uses are furniture, boxes, turnings, musical instruments, butcher’s blocks and veneers. Found all over N. America.

Learn to Identify Wood

Oak, Red

Red Oak Wood

Is the most common oak variety in North America. This straight grain hardwood is pinkish red in color. Oaks dominate the central and southern hardwood forests of the United States, and about 20 species in the eastern United States are commercially important.

Oaks furnish more native timber annually than any other broad-leaved tree It is found in Canada and eastern USA. Red Oak lumber is used for flooring and wood trim in home construction and for railroad ties, boats, furniture, and fuel, including charcoal.

Oak, White

White Oak Wood

This oak produces the finest oak veneers and lumber, and is very resistant to wear. These qualities make it significantly more valuable than red oak. Found in Canada & USA, this yellowish to light brown wood is used for furniture, cabinetmaking, boats, whiskey barrels and veneers.

Osage Orange

Osage Orange is a hardwood tree of the mulberry family. It is a medium-sized, often thorny tree, growing to 60 ft high. Its bright, orange, rot-resistant wood is used for bows, carriage poles, fence posts, and other outdoor applications plus musical instruments and turnings. Its round, wrinkled, yellowish fruit somewhat resembles a large orange or lemon. Native to the Arkansas and Red River valleys of the Arkansas and Texas region, the drought-resistant Osage orange has been planted throughout the United States. The Osage orange produces tough, flexible wood once used for bows by Osage Indians. Its inedible fruit appears in autumn.

Paduak, African

Padauk Wood Identification

Strong, durable & stable. Found in West Africa, this wood is deep red to purple-brown with red streaks, and is used for furniture, handles, turning and veneers.

Pecan

Pecan Wood Id

A member of the hickory family, known for its strength. The pecan is a large tree of the Mississippi Valley region. It produces edible nuts 1-2 in long. Wood from pecan trees is used in furniture, flooring, boxes, and crates, and as a fuel for smoking meats. The heartwood is reddish brown and the sapwood is white. Pecan is also used for turning, drum sticks, tool handles and veneers. It can be found in Mexico & USA.

Persimmon

Persimmon Wood

A member of the black ebony family, the nearly white sapwood of the persimmon is most valued. Known for it’s shock-resistance, hardness and finishing qualities, persimmon is used for golf club heads, flooring and furniture. It can be found in central and south eastern USA.

Poplar

Growing to heights of more than 200 ft., the tulip poplar is the fastest growing and tallest tree in North America. Poplar is mostly white with green and brown stains or markings. Poplar is strong but does not stain or paint well but due the low cost and abundance is commonly used for interior furniture parts such as drawer sides.

Identify Poplar Wood

Purpleheart

Purpleheart Wood Identification

A uniquely attractive hardwood. Can be vivid purple to brownish purple. Home to Central and South America, this beautiful and popular wood is used for turning, indoor and outdoor furniture, handles and pool cue butts.

Redheart

Redheart Wood Id

Rosewood, Brazilian

Rosewood is a tropical wood that is noted for it’s beauty and are highly prized as veneers in making fine furniture, paneling, and decorative pieces. Brazilian Rosewood is an almost black, oily, fragrant wood.

Rosewood, Honduran

Rosewood Honduran

Rosewood is a tropical wood that is noted for it’s beauty and are highly prized as veneers in making fine furniture, paneling, and decorative pieces. A dark purple wood sometimes streaked with yellow is also used to make percussion instruments such as the xylophone.

Spanish Cedar

Spanish Cedar Wood

Soft wood with a spicy odor. Brown with varied grain lines. Found in Central America. Has many uses but used mainly as a cigar box liner. Holds humidity and helps preserve fine cigars.

Sycamore, American

American Sycamore

Growing to heights of more than 200 ft., this tree and the tulip poplar are the tallest trees in North America. Sycamore, a pale reddish brown wood, when quarter sawn. this timber possesses a distinctive fleck or ray feature that can be a beautiful accent. Commonly used for furniture, butcher’s blocks and veneers.

Tulipwood

Tulip Wood

Is much lighter in color than any other in the rosewood family, normally available in small cuttings only. It grows very slowly and needs centuries for the heartwood to develop top quality, golden-pinkish hue with salmon to red stripe, colors that define this expensive hardwood. Tulipwood is used for turning, jewelry boxes, inlay and brush backs. It is found in South America.

Walnut, Black

Black Walnut Wood Id

Black Walnut is a handsome hardwood greatly valued for its fruit and fine-grained wood, the common dark-hued “walnut” of the furniture industry. Black walnut grows from Vermont and Maine west to southern Michigan and south to Texas and Georgia.

The tree, the tallest of the walnuts, may reach 150 ft in height. Walnut is one of the most valuable native woods in North America. Since Colonial times, its wide range of figures has graced the finest American furniture and cabinetwork. Color is dark brown to purplish black. Many uses include, fine furniture, gun stocks, turning, carving, paneling and veneers.

Wenge

Wenge Wood Id

This heavy dense wood is dark brown with black veins and sometimes streaked with fine, light brown lines. Wenge is found in Equatorial Africa and is mainly used for turning, joinery, paneling and veneers.

Zebrawood

Zebrawood Species

Distinctive in appearance, zebrawood is white with dark brown lines and is used mainly for turning, tool handles, skis, inlay, and furniture. Zebrawood comes from two species of large trees found mainly in Cameroon and Gabon, West Africa.

Ziricote

Zircote Wood Identification

A stunning dark wood, ziricote is easy to work, like bocote, ziricote is a Central American member of the cordias. The two woods are quite similar, differing mainly in color. It is mainly used for furniture, interior joinery and veneers.

Wood Identification Introduction