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Hard Maple or Brown Maple Kitchen Table

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Forum topic by MaryandMike posted 04-01-2012 01:45 PM 5544 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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MaryandMike

3 posts in 967 days


04-01-2012 01:45 PM

We would like some comments about hard maple versus brown maple for a kitchen table. We have been told that hard maple is about twice as hard as brown maple, but that it is best for floors and butcher blocks and not for kitchen tables. We like the wood grain of brown maple and we like the hardness of hard maple. We are concerned that the brown maple table will scratch up too easily, but then again we can always get it refinished. We have four boys and 2 daughters and they like to do homework on it. The table will get good use.

1. Will the brown maple, despite not being as hard as hard maple, be durable?

2. We think the brown maple table will stain better and give a better wood look than dark maple. Is that assumption correct?

3. We have cherry cabinets and oak floors. Mike likes the maple because he likes the look of different kinds of wood. He talked me out of a cherry and oak table. Is three kinds of wood too much or is it just a matter of preference?

We are design challenged and will appreciate some expert advice – thank you


6 replies so far

View HalDougherty's profile

HalDougherty

1820 posts in 1957 days


#1 posted 04-01-2012 03:08 PM

I’m not an expert, but I use a lot of maple (both hard and soft), walnut, and cherry. Soft maple is softer than sugar or rock maple, but it’s still hard. It is about the same as walnut or cherry. Your table will look good from any one or any combination of these hardwoods. I’d base the table on two things. Which wood you have on hand looks the best and which would look the best in your kitchen. You couldn’t go wrong with any of them.

-- Hal, Tennessee http://www.first285.com

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killerb

150 posts in 1118 days


#2 posted 04-01-2012 03:28 PM

Not sure who told you brown maple is softer. Brown is the color of the heartwood in soft and hard maple. It is no softer then either, as it is the same, just not the sap wood. Floors take a much bigger beating then a table would. It should be fine. bob

-- Bob www.bobkloes.com

View WDHLT15's profile

WDHLT15

1184 posts in 1196 days


#3 posted 04-02-2012 01:50 AM

Brown maple is not a species. Never heard of it. Can you provide some more info on the brown maple?

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

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MaryandMike

3 posts in 967 days


#4 posted 04-02-2012 01:54 AM

Here is a web address that describes Brown Maple.

http://www.amish-furniture-home.com/our-furniture/wood-species.

Here is a copy/paste of what is in the article.

Brown Maple

Brown Maple is a unique combination of brown, tan, white and cream which can give a rustic feel. It is a softer wood so it is prone to scratches and denting with a lot of use. Brown Maple’s soft grain absorbs medium to dark stains richly as well as its smooth surface lends itself nicely to painted finishes. Lighter stains reveal the natural characteristics of Brown Maple showing the wood’s broad range of grain color. Brown Maple has a rating of 950 on the Janka Hardness Scale*. the hardness rating for Brown Maple and Cherry are the same.

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WDHLT15

1184 posts in 1196 days


#5 posted 04-02-2012 10:42 AM

OK, they have coined their own term for marketing purposes. What they are calling brown maple is soft maple, probably red maple, Acer rubrum. Thanks for the description. Red maple has about the same specific gravity (density) as black walnut and is a little denser than cherry. It has got a bad rap because of the term “soft”. It is anything but soft, although it is not as hard as the sugar maples (called the hard maples). I really like using it.

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

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MaryandMike

3 posts in 967 days


#6 posted 04-03-2012 12:55 AM

Hal, Bob, and Wood Mizer thank you for your replies. This has been very helpful for us – thanks

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