What is your favorite wood ? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 25 Old 06-27-2008, 09:51 PM Thread Starter
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What is your favorite wood ?

I have a few favorites and a few I am not so fond of. I may be somewhat limited in the number of species I have worked with ? (don't use "exotics") Walnut is near the top for me along with cherry, mulberry,osage, honeylocust, cedar and ash. Worth a mention are elm, birch and beech.
I am not so crazy about...oak (yea oak, boring), pine, poplar off the top of my head.
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post #2 of 25 Old 06-27-2008, 10:03 PM
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I like Mahogany and Cherry. Not fond of African Mahogany or Spanish Cedar.

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post #3 of 25 Old 06-27-2008, 10:15 PM
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My favorite wood to work with was oak but now my favorites are cherry, walnut, popular, sasafras(love the odor) for flatwork but for turning I think just about anything goes except pine.

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post #4 of 25 Old 06-27-2008, 10:22 PM
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For looks, Walnut hands down...

For working, Cedar...

I cut that board three times and it's STILL too short!!!...
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post #5 of 25 Old 06-27-2008, 10:27 PM
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Lately, my favorite has been willow. Looks a lot like maple, easier to work, and not so soft that it dents and marks easily like I thought it might. I have it in birdseye and curly flavor, and gotta get more before my supplier sells out. I am also starting to realy like mesquite, but I like incorporating flaws and not cutting them out.

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post #6 of 25 Old 06-27-2008, 10:39 PM
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Favorite Wood

My favorites are cherry, walnut, and white oak.

I love the way cherry ages and develops the patina over a few years. I looks better and better the older it is.

Sam Malof said walnut was his favorite as it is sensual. It is hard to argue with him. I just made a Stickley design sideboard from walnut. I fought my wife over it as I wanted to use white oak which would have been a more traditional wood. I hate to say she was right but it does add elegance.


I also recently made a Stickley design Morris chair from quarter sawn white oak. I used a very light stain which shows the flecks.

I think the finish makes almost as much difference as the wood you use. I prefer either the natural wood or minimal stain and a flat top coat. I think it shows off the wood a lot better.

I have received a lot of compliments on both and my wife likes them so that is good.
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post #7 of 25 Old 06-28-2008, 12:32 AM
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My favorites are cherry, walnut,Oak ,Mahogany "number one in top shop.



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post #8 of 25 Old 06-28-2008, 09:20 AM
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I've had a few favorites over the years too. Red elm is near the top of the list for beautiful grain but isn't the easiest to work with. QSWO is always a pleasure. Curly maple is very pretty stuff too but is also not the easiest to work with. Ash and mahogany are both very nice, and both are great to work with. Padauk and lacewood are nice for accents or contrasts, though lacewoods tears out pretty easily. There are very few that I don't like but I tend to get bored with common woods like plain cherry, walnut, maple, birch, and oak, even though all are attractive and have their places....I see them in just about every dwelling in the northeast. I've got some nice northern PA curly cherry waiting for a project that I'm looking forward to....very pretty stuff.

I've got some butternut and chestnut that look interesting but haven't done much with yet. I've love to get some nice mesquite one of these days, but it's not too common around here.

Last edited by knotscott; 06-28-2008 at 11:59 AM.
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post #9 of 25 Old 06-28-2008, 11:48 AM
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i don't have much experience with woods aside from construction grade pine most of my woodworking has been house refinishing. now i'm attempting to organize/set up a woodworking shop. my first real woodworking project was making some end grain cutting boards with walnut and maple. both very nice. walnut has a great aroma. i'm looking forward to trying out more species once i get a little more experience.
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post #10 of 25 Old 06-28-2008, 12:31 PM
 
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If I only had one to work with the rest of my life I'd pick walnut - all the colrs/variations, etc, and I just love the smell. Never had any major problems with it.

I'm a big fan of red elm too. It beats all the others that have the same general look - like oak and ash. Cocobolo's another one.

I recently used some quilted maple for the first time and it's in a class by itself, and a lot easier to work with than curly maple.

I'll never touch another piece of Ipe in my life. Just not worth the trouble.
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post #11 of 25 Old 06-28-2008, 12:59 PM
 
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I have grown to hate oaks.My hands are always stained black from the tanic acid.Poplar sort of makes me nacious(can't spell).
I love anything curly or quilted.Other than that,I like walnut and cherry because of the smell.I'll be working me ass off and get a wiff of cherry and it puts a smile on my face.
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post #12 of 25 Old 06-28-2008, 05:32 PM
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I guess I'm sort of simple minded in this respect, but I love red oak...and I am also somewhat partial to cypress.

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post #13 of 25 Old 06-28-2008, 06:01 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smitty1967 View Post
I guess I'm sort of simple minded in this respect, but I love red oak..
Not at all, this is a personal preference question, nobody is wrong. What a guy like he likes. I have tried to make myself like oak, I just can't for some reason. I milled 400 bft (?) of red oak this afternoon. It milled easy, looked perfect...but I was bored to tears ? Some other guy will love it (I hope...I milled it to sell ), like I said it is all personal preference, everyone likes what they like and that is cool.

I did not used to like hard maple, but have gained a new respect for it and while not a favorite it is somewhere in the middle. One I don't think I will change my mind on is hickory, I don't like milling it or working with it.
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post #14 of 25 Old 06-28-2008, 06:53 PM
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I like cherry and mahogany.
Also like Daren Iím no big fan of oak. (But oddly I think I have more of it then anything else in my shop.)
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post #15 of 25 Old 06-29-2008, 12:38 AM
 
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I have always loved oak. I like to work with it, although its hard on the tools. I still like the look of it when it's all finished. I have grown (overtime) to love cedar too. Although its a soft wood, I like the way it looks when its planed down. Pjne is nice of course too.

Recently, I started working with Black Walnut. I really like it, fairly easy to work. Here in Oregon I stumbled upon Myrtle wood. Someone gave me a bunch because their grandfather died. It must have been 20 years old. Looks very nice. Very hard.

I suppose I don't think there isn't much I don't like to work with, they all have their place in my shop.

I have run into "tuplip wood" I have no idea what it is, does anyone else?
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post #16 of 25 Old 06-29-2008, 07:33 AM
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Quartersawn White Oak. I love mission style anything. But what do I know? I am building a sideboard out of red oak because I don't have any QSWO just to be building. I like what Domer said about his walnut sideboard. I am going to try that. A wood I have seen and would love to try is sycamore but don't really know much about it. I'll ask my sawyer the next time I visit him. I have seven walnut logs that I was going to sell to the mennonites but maybe I should mill them myself and use them after they dry.
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post #17 of 25 Old 06-29-2008, 08:27 AM
 
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Quote:
I have run into "tuplip wood" I have no idea what it is, does anyone else?
There's an exotic called Tulipwood, but if it's local it may be "tulip poplar" one of the many names poplar has.
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post #18 of 25 Old 06-29-2008, 08:43 AM
 
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This is a pict of Tulipwood from brazil.The second pict is of Snakewood.Never used it but still one of my favs.
Hey Daren,about a month ago you showed a pict of quarter sawn sycamore.I thought I saved it but I didn't.Could you post it again.This seems to be a good place for it
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post #19 of 25 Old 06-29-2008, 09:00 AM
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Well ... my favorite is black walnut with about 3 or 4 coats of tung oil/varnish. Then quarter sawn white oak... It really depends on what i`m building. I like the looks of quilted mahogany, coffee nut, birds eye maple and orchard cherry. The woods I`ve used are too many to list. I would like to find some pear wood because of what James Krenof has to say about it... workability! This is a great subject...there are so many woods to explore! I`ve found some really interesting grain formations with book matched mahogany... one in piticular that reminds me of Charley Chaplin! I`m saving that for a spice box door. Red wood is amazing...I built a scale model of a house I designed using red wood (timber framed). It was real easy to glue and stayed straight! I could list the woods I don`t like...but that was not the question...Red oak dust will kill your lungs...along with some exotics...drum sanding ebony to make a violin bridge...brought me to my knees...Windge` will do the same!!! Be careful!! Rick

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post #20 of 25 Old 06-29-2008, 09:09 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by JON BELL View Post
Daren,about a month ago you showed a pict of quarter sawn sycamore.Could you post it again.
Here it is.
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