Hardwood for shop projects

  • Advertise with us

« back to Wood & Lumber forum

Forum topic by nogeel posted 08-19-2015 03:37 PM 822 views 0 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View nogeel's profile


75 posts in 1067 days

08-19-2015 03:37 PM

Topic tags/keywords: hardwood router tablesaw jig popular

I am a new woodworker starting to set up my shop. In the process I have bought a few plans from stumpy numbs (more to support the show) and a couple of the small shop books from Woodsmith.

All of these plans mention using hardwood for certain (what seems to me) critical parts. For example, I am wanting to build a router extension for my table saw that is in the Complete Small Shop from Woodsmith. The frame for the extension that attaches to the saw they recommend hardwood (kind of like the rails in the home built table saw fence on Stumpy nubs).

Are there particular hardwoods I should use or avoid for what to me are critical points in the tool that are less prone to wood movement? Or am I overthinking it? Maybe Popular because it is cheap? Or do I need to accept the fact that each season I may have to do something to it.

Thanks in advance.


-- Jeff, Tennessee

3 replies so far

View jdh122's profile


1009 posts in 2815 days

#1 posted 08-19-2015 04:07 PM

If they’re recommending hardwood it’s because the parts need the extra strength, obviously. I wouldn’t use poplar for those pieces – if poplar was strong enough, then Southern Yellow Pine would work fine. If it needs hardwood you should go for a stronger species, depending on what you can get locally. Sugar maple is always a good choice, but oak, ash, hickory would work too. If those are too expensive, use SYP instead of poplar.
If you orient the wood so that the growth rings are parallel to the dimension that you don’t want to see expand and contract you’ll get less movement than if the rings are perpendicular.

-- Jeremy, in the Acadian forests

View MrRon's profile


4769 posts in 3241 days

#2 posted 08-19-2015 04:41 PM This handbook will tell you everything you need about wood of all kinds.

View nogeel's profile


75 posts in 1067 days

#3 posted 08-19-2015 06:38 PM

I picked up 9 feet 4/4 S3S piece of Ash during lunch. How long should I wait to work on it? Does it make sense to go ahead and rough cut the lengths I need?

-- Jeff, Tennessee

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics