Reply by crank49

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Posted on Hardwood choice for Roubo style workbench

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4032 posts in 2996 days

#1 posted 02-27-2012 04:58 PM

Poplar would be a nice bench IMO. Not very pretty from a grain point of view, but stable and functional.
Be sure it’s dry. Poplar is a sappy wood and will shrink very badly if not good and dry. It is probably the softest of the three choices you listed. Soft is not necessasarily a bad thing.

Soft maple will be a harder and heavier bench than poplar and also not a bad choice.

I’m not a big fan of ash just because it is brittle and tends to make splinters. Seems like every time I pick up a piece of rough ash I get a splinter in my hand. Otherwise, it reminds me of oak, has open pore structure like oak. I guess it would make a good strong bench, but I’d feel like I need to wear gloves to work on it. Just me, probably.

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