any knowledge on diff of hickory/pecan wood

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Forum topic by , posted 09-24-2011 09:36 AM 1929 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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2387 posts in 2585 days

09-24-2011 09:36 AM

I am providing a bid for a job this weekend. The cust stated he wants hickory, does not want any hickory substitute such as “pecan” used, is set on hickory. I have done hickory kitchens in the past. Whenever i go to lumber yard and ask for hickory, i end up getting pecan. Im not real sure.of.the.difference. i have done a search on the two in the past, long time ago.

-- .

11 replies so far

View Dallas's profile


3555 posts in 1525 days

#1 posted 09-24-2011 12:09 PM

I have some pecan and some hickory right here in the shop and they are almost impossible to find any difference.
Pecan is a member of the hickory family. If you have your heart set on Hickory, check out Roddis Lumber in San Antonio, 727 North Cherry 210-226-1426

There is also another place that specializes in recycled tree lumber from homeowners, but I’ve lost the link and the name.

-- Improvise.... Adapt...... Overcome!

View WDHLT15's profile


1404 posts in 1514 days

#2 posted 09-24-2011 02:03 PM

Hickory has a lighter color in the sapwood, very light, almost white, while pecan has more of a slight tan color. There is generally more figure in the heartwood in pecan. Otherwise, they are kissing cousins. If the customer cannot tell them apart, wonder why it matters?

-- Danny Located in Perry, GA. Forester. Wood-Mizer LT15 Sawmill. Nyle L53 Dehumidification Kiln.

View ,'s profile


2387 posts in 2585 days

#3 posted 09-24-2011 02:11 PM

I agree it should not matter. I have a with my jobs on it and i advertise.they are hickory but they are actually pecan. I will probably convince the cust to go with pecan, if not i will get hickory from roddis.

-- .

View derosa's profile


1567 posts in 1874 days

#4 posted 09-25-2011 07:17 AM

Maybe an allergy issue? I’ve heard of people being allergic to walnut connected to a severe nut allergy, maybe a similar issue with pecan or just a desire not to find out if there is an issue.
I’m actually allergic to weeping willow trees and not other forms of willow. No idea why the difference and it’s the only thing I’m allergic to outside of poison ivy. A little freakish I know but it could be a reason.

-- --Rev. Russ in NY-- A posse ad esse

View EPJartisan's profile


1113 posts in 2163 days

#5 posted 09-25-2011 09:07 PM

Pecan is the smaller, softer, more figured little brother of the Hickory genus. I have read that this is because they spend more time making lighter nuts to propagate rather than sending shoots for reproduction … making early wood rings wider and softer than other hickories. They prefer to grow in bottom lands, near streams, so as to not need water retention as much as walnut trees … and it does not bother making a toxin to be competitive to other plants. so if not for aesthetic or for allergy reasons (seriously a finished piece should NOT give people hives).. I can not fathom why not pecan wood.

-- " 'Truth' is like a beautiful flower, unique to each plant and to the season it blossoms ... 'Fact' is the root and leaf, allowing the plant grow and bloom again."

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

3952 posts in 2999 days

#6 posted 09-27-2011 12:25 AM

Just remember that hickory is some kinda hard and heavy. Distinct variations between heart and sap wood. That’s what make it attractive to those who like it. Lotsa use in rustic/cabin cabs or furniture. Natural finish is best for showing off the character of the wood.
You can beat a tank to bits with a good piece of hickory.


View WDHLT15's profile


1404 posts in 1514 days

#7 posted 09-27-2011 02:44 AM

It you have ever planed or sanded pecan, you will know that it is a hickory!

-- Danny Located in Perry, GA. Forester. Wood-Mizer LT15 Sawmill. Nyle L53 Dehumidification Kiln.

View Bill Burr's profile

Bill Burr

12 posts in 1470 days

#8 posted 09-29-2011 07:54 PM

Just finishing a set of tables in Hickory. Like Bill said the difference in the sap wood and the heart wood make for a beautiful looking table. I have stock from 3 different trees in my inventory. There are two different looks to the lumber. In Indiana there are 7 different types of Hickory trees. Bitternut, Mockernut, Pignut, Red, Sand, Shagbark, and Shellbark. Which trees produce which grain look I have not figured out yet. Best of luck

-- Just another beautiful day in paradise.

View yrob's profile


340 posts in 2691 days

#9 posted 09-29-2011 07:55 PM

Whoa, its going to be a bear to work. Is not hickory extremely hard? The stuff tool handles are made of?

-- Yves

View WDHLT15's profile


1404 posts in 1514 days

#10 posted 09-30-2011 05:12 AM

It is harder than Hades.

-- Danny Located in Perry, GA. Forester. Wood-Mizer LT15 Sawmill. Nyle L53 Dehumidification Kiln.

View ratchet's profile


1335 posts in 2825 days

#11 posted 09-30-2011 02:12 PM

From memory its 40 pts higher in hardness than hard maple.

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