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Need Help identifying some shipwreck wood

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Forum topic by Exuma posted 09-10-2010 07:59 AM 2163 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Exuma

17 posts in 1472 days


09-10-2010 07:59 AM

Topic tags/keywords: haiti bahamas mahogany exotic

Hello all! This is my first post and I hope I can post here some more. I love woodworking and using different woods.

I’m also a bit of a scavenger… lol. Which leads me to my main question.

Recently a Haitian Sloop shipwrecked itself on a beach near my home here in Exuma, Bahamas. Me being the scavenger I am.. I set out with sledgehammer, pry bar and sawsall in hand to see what kind of interesting wood I can find.

I found two very interesting pieces; one of which I am pretty sure of its identity but would appreciate some confirmation. However there is one piece that has me puzzled.

Mahogany
I am pretty sure this is Haitian Mahogany. It’s just a small test block I cut from a 8foot long beam.

Mystery wood
THIS is the one which I am not sure of. It is a very heavy and HARD wood. I originally thought it was lignum vitae or some other form of iron wood but when I cut it I was surprised by the colour of the core and the aroma (a sweet-ish aroma)

I’d appreciate any help i can get! thanks!


12 replies so far

View CharlieM1958's profile

CharlieM1958

15698 posts in 2874 days


#1 posted 09-10-2010 02:55 PM

When I looked at the first photo, my first thought was mahogany of some sort.

The second photo, just by appearances, looks like the same as the first, but with these pieces containing more sapwood. However, from your description I take it they have different weight and aroma characteristics, so I guess that leaves me stumped.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

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CharlieM1958

15698 posts in 2874 days


#2 posted 09-10-2010 03:05 PM

By the way, I forgot to mention…. I hate you for living in the Bahamas. :-)

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View jusfine's profile

jusfine

2280 posts in 1582 days


#3 posted 09-10-2010 03:28 PM

Welcome to Lumberjocks!

My initial impression was as Charlie’s, the color and grain resemble various mahogany species.

Sorry I can’t help…

-- Randy "You are judged as much by the questions you ask as the answers you give..."

View Exuma's profile

Exuma

17 posts in 1472 days


#4 posted 09-11-2010 04:34 AM

Thanks for your responses. My initial reaction when I felt the weight of the wood was “mahogany or lignum vitae” and I know for a fact now it is not lignum vitae.

No matter what kind of wood it is… It will be beautiful when I use it on a project

View Sawmillnc's profile

Sawmillnc

150 posts in 1711 days


#5 posted 09-11-2010 04:42 AM

definitely mahog..

-- Kyle Edwards, http://www.sawmillnc.com, Iron Station , NC (near Charlotte)

View Mark Shymanski's profile

Mark Shymanski

5113 posts in 2369 days


#6 posted 09-19-2010 07:04 PM

If it was floating it wasn’t lignum vitae as it is a very dense wood and I believe it either completely sinks or just barely floats.

-- "Checking for square? What madness is this! The cabinet is square because I will it to be so!" Jeremy Greiner LJ Topic#20953 2011 Feb 2

View Exuma's profile

Exuma

17 posts in 1472 days


#7 posted 10-20-2010 06:58 AM

@jusfine, thanks for the welcome. I personally have never seen mahog. look like that, although I suppose it could be a young mahogany.

@mark I’m very familiar with Lignum Vitae since it is the national tree of The Bahamas and it does indeed sink.

View Mark Shymanski's profile

Mark Shymanski

5113 posts in 2369 days


#8 posted 10-21-2010 11:56 PM

I did not know where it grew! Thanks for the information.

-- "Checking for square? What madness is this! The cabinet is square because I will it to be so!" Jeremy Greiner LJ Topic#20953 2011 Feb 2

View CampD's profile

CampD

1202 posts in 2142 days


#9 posted 10-22-2010 01:27 AM

I’m still trying to get the fact the you live on the BEACH in the Bahama’s!!!

-- Doug...

View shipwright's profile

shipwright

4978 posts in 1454 days


#10 posted 10-22-2010 04:35 AM

I can vouch for Lignum Vitae being a sinker. Something about finishing some new deadeyes I had just made. working on the float beside my boat… I remember a wake rocking the float and some quiet little plopping sounds. They would have beaten a crescent wrench in a race to the bottom.

Paul M

-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglass boats he would have given us fiberglass trees. http://prmdesigns.com/

View Dark_Lightning's profile

Dark_Lightning

1715 posts in 1765 days


#11 posted 10-22-2010 05:05 AM

Can’t positively identify it, but it appears to be a piece of ship…

Just remember folks, half of all Atlantic hurricanes also cross Exuma’s beach. I recommend you build your house out of that stuff and dig it in deep, Exuma.

View Exuma's profile

Exuma

17 posts in 1472 days


#12 posted 10-22-2010 05:19 AM

@atom – Down here we tend to build our homes out of concrete. It did come from a ship, the boom from a haitian sloop to be exact.

@camp – Lol! I don’t live on the beach. but close enough.

I think i’ve found a candidate for what the mystery wood is in the second photo. drumroll KAPOK. “The wood is a pinkish white to ashy brown in color, with a straight grain.” – taken from http://www.blueplanetbiomes.org/kapok.htm

I also asked the haitian man who works for me if he knew what kind of tree it is and he said “Kapob”

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