soft maple

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Forum topic by watcher posted 06-12-2010 08:27 AM 2826 views 0 times favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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34 posts in 3186 days

06-12-2010 08:27 AM

Topic tags/keywords: maple

hello i am having a soft maple cut down next week and was wanting to know if it is good for much like does it turn well on a lathe can it be carved using hand chisels or just anything ? i just hate to see wood being burned if it can be usefull and i havent worked with this before so i am asking the great woodworkers here on lumberjocks to give me some input on the subject.

-- in wood working there is no need for perfection as inperfections just go to show that the project was done by hand with love and care

13 replies so far

View hObOmOnk's profile


1381 posts in 4128 days

#1 posted 06-12-2010 11:40 AM

I like the so-called soft maples, especially silver maple and box elder.

-- 温故知新

View a1Jim's profile


117095 posts in 3577 days

#2 posted 06-12-2010 05:12 PM

Don’t burn it mill it.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Canadian Woodworks's profile

Canadian Woodworks

702 posts in 3070 days

#3 posted 06-12-2010 05:40 PM

I decided to build my first hal taylor rocking chair out of wormy soft maple check it out I have a blog on it.

Mill it and build some beautiful projects you won’t regret it

-- Paul Lemiski, Ontario Canada, Custom Wooden Rocking chairs and tables

View SST's profile


790 posts in 4195 days

#4 posted 06-12-2010 05:42 PM

I made an end table with some & the results were great. I think it works well, although I haven’t carved or turned it… just cut, glued, planed, routered & finished. I certainly wouldn’t burn it.-SST

-- Accuracy is not in your power tool, it's in you

View Belle City Woodworking's profile

Belle City Woodworking

355 posts in 4017 days

#5 posted 06-12-2010 06:32 PM

I bought a bunch of Soft Maple for .45 cents a board foot. Here is a little table I made from it.

Mom's Table

And here is the top:

Table Top

I agree…...Mill it and use it.

-- Formerly known as John's Woodshop - and NO not the one from Ohio!

View Timberwerks's profile


360 posts in 3161 days

#6 posted 06-12-2010 06:45 PM

View matt garcia's profile

matt garcia

1892 posts in 3672 days

#7 posted 06-12-2010 07:13 PM

It’s free wood, mill it up, and gloat about it!!!!

-- Matt Garcia Wannabe Period Furniture Maker, Houston TX

View Bearpie's profile


2601 posts in 3018 days

#8 posted 06-12-2010 08:24 PM

I agree with the rest to mill it but if you have a lathe save some chunks to turn and if the grains are “plain” slap some dye “ala Trifern” and have a go at it! Just keep your chisels sharp to reduce tear outs. If you come to a place in the tree where the stem splits into 2 branches be darn sure to save that section for the lathe as that area will usually have the prettiest, most unusual grains due to stress factors from the 2 branches.

Erwin, Jacksonville, FL

-- Erwin, Jacksonville, FL

View richgreer's profile


4541 posts in 3075 days

#9 posted 06-12-2010 09:38 PM

Soft maple (aka silver maple) is a great wood to work with. I have never turned it, but my intuition is that it would turn well. It has a Janka hardness index of about 700, about half of what hard (sugar) maple is. It is harder than poplar, cedar, pine, aspen and other softer woods. It is just a little softer than sycamore.

More importantly – it’s easy to work with and easy to stain and finish.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 4300 days

#10 posted 06-12-2010 09:52 PM

Silver maple is great turning wood.

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-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN.

View Roper's profile


1389 posts in 3713 days

#11 posted 06-13-2010 03:22 AM

turning freshly cut silver maple is about as good as it gets. let us know if you need a hand using that wood.

-- Roper - Master of sawdust-

View Rob Drown's profile

Rob Drown

789 posts in 3833 days

#12 posted 06-13-2010 03:30 AM

It is a wonderful wood. Easier to work than hard maple but very strong. Finishes well. Great stuff. If you air dry it be sure to stick it well and paint the ends.

-- The expectations of life depend upon diligence; the mechanic that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools. Confucius, 经过艰苦的努力的梦想可以成真

View TheWoodsmith's profile


108 posts in 2920 days

#13 posted 06-14-2010 01:37 PM

USE IT!! i got “talked into” buying 100 BF of the stuff at rock bottom price from this small mill i go to and it was a great buy! it machines really well, but i disagree on the “ease of finish” it didn’t stain up very well but dont take my word for it as this was my first foryer into soft maple

-- I know its around here somewhere...

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