Steamed Cherry

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Forum topic by mattsk8 posted 03-30-2010 03:59 PM 807 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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8 posts in 2410 days

03-30-2010 03:59 PM

I’m new to this site and sorry to bust out w/ questions! (I also hope I posted in the right spot!)

I’m a cabinet maker and I just bought cherry from a local hardwood distributor that’s going out of buisiness for 3.00$/ bf (4/4 planed to 15/16). I originally thought, “WOW I stole that!” but then my finish guy (he planes it and sands it) told me it was steamed cherry.

He didn’t have anything bad to say about it but my concern is that my customer wants cherry and I assumed I was getting ‘cherry’. Is this going to finish different than regular cherry? What are the fundamental differences between good ole american cherry and steamed cherry? In the rough saw state it looked identical and the boards were straight and true. After milling it to finish it seems to have a teeny tiny bit lighter patina (less red) but still has the same color variations and seemingly similar grains.

Anyone know if can use this for the kitchen I’m building or will I have a very upset customer??

Thanks for any help here and I look forward to ‘playing’ on this forum. I LOVE woodworking, have since I was a kid. Can’t wait to learn and share experiances here!!

-- Depleting our natural resources one custom cabinet at a time

2 replies so far

View Michael Murphy's profile

Michael Murphy

449 posts in 2422 days

#1 posted 03-30-2010 04:09 PM

Steaming is supposed to blend the colors between sap wood and heart wood. Probably not a problem. Google it.

-- Michael Murphy, Woodland, CA.

View HokieMojo's profile


2103 posts in 3145 days

#2 posted 03-30-2010 04:46 PM

i do think it tends to mute the colors sometimes (at least it does with walnut) but an oil finish can bring it back. The only bad thing is oil can blotch on cherry more than it usually does on walnut.

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