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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
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I just had a beautiful custom bookshelf made. I specified white oak posts. When it arrived today I thought to myself— hmm that sure looks like red oak to me. The builder remained steadfast, however, and told me this was indeed white oak. The posts are pinkish not pale, but it’s the open pores on the end grain that seem like a dead giveaway to me. (Also, I did a light sand on a hidden part and it didn’t pass the sniff test either) But before I make a stink, does anyone out there think this could be White oak?
 

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Looks like a mixture to me. The turning is definitely Red oak where the shelf under it is white oak. The turning showing the end grain has the open grain which is a characteristic of red oak. The shelf has long rays in the grain.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Looks like a mixture to me. The turning is definitely Red oak where the shelf under it is white oak. The turning showing the end grain has the open grain which is a characteristic of red oak. The shelf has long rays in the grain.
I should have specified- the shelf is indeed white oak veneer to my eye. No question there. It’s the turning thats in question.
 

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This is red and white oak. Can you see the differences?
20200330_115111.jpg.5da3f074d0ec8a3e9cb58b1d21fdaba2.jpg
 

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Looks like Red Oak because of the open pores in the end grain like other people have mentioned.

Too bad that you didn't get exactly what you asked for, but if you still like the design and entire project, you win.

The builder may have won this battle (insisting it's White Oak) but could lose the war in the form of you not being a repeat customer.
 

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Termite
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It has white oak mdf drawers, wrapped in wood
 

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one thing i have learned in 45 years of woodworking, is that you cannot just go by color in determining which is red oak vs white oak, 100% of the time. there were many times i would have bet the farm on color, only to look at the end grain and rays to see that i was wrong. seen white that looked red, and vice versa.

you do have to watch on sapwood of white oak, it can also be porous... which is why the white oak sapwood is not near as weather resistant as the heartwood.
 

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one thing i have learned in 45 years of woodworking, is that you cannot just go by color in determining which is red oak vs white oak, 100% of the time. ...
I have both in my shop mixed together. Picking out the white for ribs on my boat was not an easy task at first.

I finally discovered a way to spot it because all the white came from the same tree. I got to where I could pick it out from the other boards but it was far from obvious. I am not convinced just because I see holes in the end that it is red oak.
 
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