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Tips & Tricks: Wood Identification

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Forum topic by MsDebbieP posted 1003 days ago 2000 views 1 time favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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MsDebbieP

18615 posts in 2793 days


1003 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: tips tricks gateway wood identification characteristics

What are your tips/tricks re: Wood Identification?
- charts? descriptions?

(also add links to helpful blogs etc that are related to the topic)

Check out the WOOD LIBRARY discussion.

 

Gateway to all Tips & Tricks Topics
 

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (https://www.facebook.com/DebbiePribeleENJOConsultant)


12 replies so far

View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 2932 days


#1 posted 1002 days ago

I found this site to be my favorite wood ID site. It has a lot of excellent images.

-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN. http://www.woodcarvingillustrated.com/gallery/member.php?uid=3627&protype=1

View KnickKnack's profile

KnickKnack

972 posts in 2199 days


#2 posted 1002 days ago

The bestest, most reliablest method is to take some pictures, and post them in a topic on a web site I sometimes visit called LumberJocks
They always come up trumps on this kind of thing.

-- "Do not speak – unless it improves on silence." --- "Following the rules and protecting the regulations is binding oneself without rope."

View Druid's profile

Druid

608 posts in 1428 days


#3 posted 1002 days ago

Hi Debbie,
Good topic, and I would suggest having a look at the following site . . . http://forestry.about.com/cs/treeid/a/hard_tree_id.htm
Besides this particular link for methods of identifying wood types, the author Steve Nix, who is a professional forester, has posted a lot of interesting and clearly presented information on forestry. There are also methods of identifying trees in both summer and winter, with clear step by step processes.
He also has a newsletter that readers can sign up for.
As far as my own wood identification goes, I have a frequent problem with pieces that I come across that have been moved from the original tree. So, for these, I simply mark them as “FOG” wood . . . Found On Ground. They usually still carve well.

Enjoy.

-- John, British Columbia, Canada

View RGtools's profile

RGtools

3302 posts in 1287 days


#4 posted 1002 days ago

Get a few different samples of wood and work with them by hand. Once you have, planned, cut, smelled & felt a particular wood, it is very difficult to mistake it from that point forward.

I agree with Knick knack though, that’s one of the best ways I have found for one I don’t know. I have a book at home that is helpfull too but the name escapes me that this moment.

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View WDHLT15's profile

WDHLT15

1099 posts in 1109 days


#5 posted 1001 days ago

I am a Forester and have been studying wood for 3 decades. The key to wood ID is to learn the pore structure of hardwoods. Some are ring porous and some are diffuse porous. This deals with the size and arrangement of the pores throughout the growth ring. Then, they are other features like the presence or absence of visual medullary rays, the arrangement of parenchyma cells, presence or absence of tyloses, etc. These features are observed on a cross section and sometimes requires a 10x hand lens. Sound complicated, but it is fun to learn.

The best bet would be a tutor that can put you through the ropes. I have trained several other people. Another key is to look at many different species over and over again. Things like color, aroma, grain, also come into play.

We could do a tutorial if there is enough interest. We could pick species of interest, then dissect the characteristics that lead to identification. If you had a piece of that species, you could observe your own sample and learn the characteristics.

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

View RGtools's profile

RGtools

3302 posts in 1287 days


#6 posted 1001 days ago

“The wood handbook for craftsmen” describes how to ident wood pretty well. I like WDHLT15’s idea.

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 2932 days


#7 posted 1001 days ago

Hi, WDHLT15!

I think a tutorial would be an excellent thing.

I worked with a wood technologist quite a few years ago, & he always carries a 10X magnifier in his pocket. He would look at the end grain, & would compare it to pictures in a book he had.

Here’s an example of Red Oak.

-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN. http://www.woodcarvingillustrated.com/gallery/member.php?uid=3627&protype=1

View WDHLT15's profile

WDHLT15

1099 posts in 1109 days


#8 posted 1001 days ago

Yes, that is a great site. It prominently shows the open pore structure in the red oaks.

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

View Kindlingmaker's profile

Kindlingmaker

2654 posts in 2159 days


#9 posted 1001 days ago

Sorry, I have to do this…
There are two types of wood, Good Wood and Poor Wood. Good Wood is free wood and Poor Wood is something I have to buy!

-- Never board, always knotty, lots of growth rings

View joey bealis's profile

joey bealis

177 posts in 1139 days


#10 posted 1001 days ago

This is all very interesting but after being in the cabinet business for a few years I can usually get it in at least the right family by taste. Eating enough dust for enough years and you just know.

-- http://reclaimedbuilding.blogspot.com/

View leonmcd's profile

leonmcd

204 posts in 2604 days


#11 posted 709 days ago

The following is something we started here several years ago. Still good information. Could use more contributions.

LumberJocks Wood Library

-- Leon -- Houston, TX - " I create all my own designs and it looks like it "

View leonmcd's profile

leonmcd

204 posts in 2604 days


#12 posted 709 days ago

Just discovered that all the links in the LumberJocks Wood Library were broken.

I’ve corrected them so if they failed for you before, they should work now. Take another look.

-- Leon -- Houston, TX - " I create all my own designs and it looks like it "

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