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Forum topic by jeffswildwood posted 07-16-2015 12:53 AM 1094 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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jeffswildwood

1316 posts in 1437 days


07-16-2015 12:53 AM

Topic tags/keywords: wood

Hi all, I have three silver maple trees laying in my yard now due to recent storms. Has anyone ever had this wood processed into boards? How does it work and look after dried. I know maple is beautiful but can’t recall anyone using silver? Comments appreciated before it gets cut up.

-- We all make mistakes, the trick is to fix it in a way thats says "I meant to do that".


12 replies so far

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JeffP

573 posts in 851 days


#1 posted 07-16-2015 01:04 AM

The house I grew up in had several nice silver maples. Thanks for the nice memory. Sorry they came down. The recent big winds just barely missed me down here in northern NC.

My recollection is that they are among the fastest growing of the maples, so probably pretty soft wood (not necessarily a bad thing).

Wikipedia entry claims they are used in furniture and musical instruments (and surprisingly…flooring).

At the very least they should be good for all of the less-seen wood within your projects, like drawer backs and sides and internal structural pieces.

Might as well “do them up” and see what you have. Probably some nice figure in there somewhere!

-- Last week I finally got my $*i# together. Unfortunately, it was in my shop, so I will probably never find it again.

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Tim

3110 posts in 1421 days


#2 posted 07-16-2015 01:10 AM

Gist is Silver maple is grouped with the other soft maples to contrast them with hard maple (Sugar maple). It’s not that soft compared to most other North American hardwoods but it’s softer than hard maple.
More detail:
http://www.wood-database.com/wood-articles/differences-between-hard-maple-and-soft-maple/

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Jimbo4

1431 posts in 2222 days


#3 posted 07-16-2015 01:40 AM

Wonderfull white/cream color ! I don’t use for board length, just turning.

-- BOVILEXIA: The urge to moo at cows from a moving vehicle.

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wflather

20 posts in 506 days


#4 posted 07-16-2015 01:58 AM

Jeff, I have quite a bit of silver maple and have had a bunch of it milled into lumber, simply because I have it and can have it milled locally rather cheaply.
Observations: A soft maple, the wood is very blond, although heartwood can be darker. like other maples grain is light.
Trees are often afflicted by borers (not uncommon to maples) which will leave long, dark streaks in the wood terminated with two closely spaced holes. Sometimes this is attractive, sometimes unwanted.
Grain also may twist up the trunk, and can cause frustration if you are handplaning unless you have good well-tuned, sharp blades.
Silver maple planes well in motorized planers, seems fairly stable, and prone enough to splitting that I pre-drill and countersink screw and nail holes near the end of boards.
Takes decorative profiles well on my router table. Haven’t done much hand planing of profiles, just smooth planing to remove machining marks on flat-stock.
I’ve used it for dovetailed boxes and secondary wood in dovetailed drawers.
It accepts water-based dyes well and you can give the wood a nice 100 year old patina.
I think it is pretty, and am happy to have it on hand, especially since it was pretty cheap!
Don’t let it sit on the ground long unless you want spalted lumber.

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wflather

20 posts in 506 days


#5 posted 07-16-2015 02:00 AM

Below is a silver maple coat rack (fits over an office cubicle wall) darkened with a dilute colonial maple dye to bring out the curl.
http://i1028.photobucket.com/albums/y350/wflather/IMG_20130201_221024s_zpspupgjlyq.jpg

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gfadvm

14940 posts in 2149 days


#6 posted 07-16-2015 02:05 AM

I have milled quite a bit of silver maple and wish I could find more. It spalts relatively quickly after the tree dies and produces some spectacular spalted figure. You are also liable to find some curl and quilting.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

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jeffswildwood

1316 posts in 1437 days


#7 posted 07-17-2015 12:46 AM

Thanks for the info guys. I do think I want to give it a try. If I can get it cut to slices. I may try to get two cut early as I can and wait on one and see what spalting does. Nothing ventured nothing gained

-- We all make mistakes, the trick is to fix it in a way thats says "I meant to do that".

View fuigb's profile

fuigb

403 posts in 2417 days


#8 posted 07-17-2015 03:08 AM

I quarter saw siler maple logs on my 14” band saw and then air dry. The look is interesting and worth the wait. And the price is right. Silver beats hard maple, IMO, because it is so much easier to work by hand.

-- - Crud. Go tell your mother that I need a Band-aid.

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Rick M

7902 posts in 1839 days


#9 posted 07-17-2015 07:08 AM

Silver maple is soft, about the same as yellow pine, maybe softer. I use it for small or utility projects.

Click for details

-- http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

View doubleDD's profile

doubleDD

5210 posts in 1503 days


#10 posted 07-17-2015 06:14 PM

Unfortunate that the weather destroyed the trees but may as well get something out of it. I have some 5’’ diameter maple tree logs that will be milling up and a few for turning. Wood is wood.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

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jeffswildwood

1316 posts in 1437 days


#11 posted 07-18-2015 12:29 AM

Dave, 5 inch diameter? This can be used? I guess for turning its perfect. If I hit some nice size pieces that look good for turning I’ll try to set you up with some. Maybe beer mug size? May take a bit though.

-- We all make mistakes, the trick is to fix it in a way thats says "I meant to do that".

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doubleDD

5210 posts in 1503 days


#12 posted 07-18-2015 03:40 AM

Jeff, I had a clump maple, 5 main branches coming out of the ground. Lightning struck it a couple years ago and over 60% of it was dead this year so I am taking it down little at a time. 5’’ diameter is rather small but I have over 25 ft of 5’’ straight branches so I thought I try slicing some up. Yes, these are perfect for making beverage koozies.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

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