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Author Topic: Wood Characteristics  (Read 2326 times)

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Offline Barbara_Gill

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Wood Characteristics
« on: July 15, 2001, 06:22:53 PM »
Please excuse my ignorance. I have looked around and found great information about trees, etc. Are there any wood experts among this hugh assembly of knowlegdable people? Or possible a wood data base like the plant data base? 8) 8) :P
Barbara Gill
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Offline Ron Wenrich

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Re: Wood Characteristics
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2001, 07:10:13 PM »
What is it you're looking for?  It isn't so much that we're "experts", but we do have some resources.   :P

We had quite a discussion on Wood Science 101 about wood.  It took quite a bit of research, but everyone got to learn something new.

I recently bought a new book called "Understanding Wood - a Craftsman's Guide to Wood Technology". Lots of good information, but, I havn't gotten a chance to crack it, yet.

What would you be looking for in a wood data base?  Sounds like maybe another calculator idea. :D
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Offline Barbara_Gill

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Re: Wood Characteristics
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2001, 08:22:42 PM »
Yes I read that discussion; it was interesting. I too have a number of resource books including Hoadley's Understanding Wood. Every once in awhile I cut an unusual tree, for example an Ailanthus. It would be nice to look up the working characteristics of the wood..
Barbara Gill
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Offline Jeff

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Re: Wood Characteristics
« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2001, 02:50:47 AM »
This website will give you a lot of info on the major hardwoods and ratings for machining, gluing, strength, and so on.

http://www.hardwoodspecies.org/index.msql

Just click on the tree you need!
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Offline Ron Wenrich

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Re: Wood Characteristics
« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2001, 03:35:21 PM »
I have a wood tech book that has a list of mechanical properties, as well as shrinkage, specific gravity and weight.  But, it is only on native American species.

Can't help you out too much on ailanthus.  I've sawn some, and it is very soft and stinky.  It would probably machine well, but, I'm not too sure if it doesn't bend and carry on during drying.  Some butt logs may do well.

I used to cut them into railroad ties, when a tie inspector didn't know what ailanthus was or how to ID it.  I now cut it into pallet stock.

BTW, in my area (PA) most people call it sumac, pronounced shoemack.  I know it isn't sumac, but, you won't ever convince an old farmer who's called it that for years.
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Offline Barbara_Gill

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Re: Wood Characteristics
« Reply #5 on: July 16, 2001, 07:21:34 PM »
Actually I am looking for those tidbits that are not usually part of general information. For instance a customer brought me some Cherrybark red Oak to saw for him. It is also known as Southern Red Oak. Today he told me that a forester told him that the oak was the wood of choice for school furniture because it stains so well. Of course I don't know if that is true. This oak did not have the dramatic ray fleck pattern I am used to seeing on the quarter. In fact I thought it was a rather boring wood.  

I have used Ailanthus as a woodworker. It looses its stink after drying. In spite of its instability from green to dried, it seems to be stable after kiln drying. The flat sawn boards were more stable than quartersawn. :P ;D
Barbara Gill
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Offline L. Wakefield

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Re: Wood Characteristics
« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2001, 12:21:37 PM »
 hi Barbara. At one point I was doing some type of obscure research- I remember- trying to find out whether agarwood (Aquilaria species) grew in Malaysia- and I stumbled across a Malaysian or Singapore website with a lot if info on international types of wood- stuff you wouldn't find around here. It included all the countries' names for the species- interestingly, many had the same basic sound til you came to Vietnamese- and they were almost always different. I will see if I can find the site again. I may have bookmarked it.
  I don't recall if it had ailanthus- but it did have specifically the slant that you want- strength, durability, application, probably cutting peculiarities.
  I'll be back if I can find it. Louise W. :)
L. Wakefield, owner and operator of the beastly truck Heretik, that refuses to stay between the lines when parking

Offline Ron Wenrich

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Re: Wood Characteristics
« Reply #7 on: July 17, 2001, 04:00:52 PM »
The old school furnishings were made from white oak.  A lot of those came into being during the mission oak period.

Our local elementary school recently was remodeled.  They used red oak in the trim, but it was all clear finish.  Most furniture in schools up here are clear finish.

I would think oak would be the choice more due to durability.  I've also seen maple furnishings, as well.  
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