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Poplar is good wood to work with but it does not take stain very well. It tends to be splotchy. There are ways to minimize the splotchy property of the wood but minimize is the key word. If you plan on painting poplar then it works great. I find that it works better than pine but I don't use it very often. I mostly use red oak because its still inexpensive and for me about $2.35 a b/f where as poplar is $2.10 a b/f. So it's not a big enough cost saving for the size of projects I do.
 

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Poplar is a soft hardwood. I tend to use this mostly for drawer side and backs. It is also a good wood if you are going to paint a project. I think you will find that it is a nice wood to work with. If you plan on staining I would recommend Red or white Oak or Cherry.
 

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I thought poplar was cheap until I was wanting to build a dog gate in our house. They sold me oak for the same price as poplar. I just used a water based clear to finish,don't care for that deep oak look that always jumps out after it's stained.
 
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