Using Aspen for Furniture

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Forum topic by grfrazee posted 10-26-2012 08:52 PM 6925 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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388 posts in 2109 days

10-26-2012 08:52 PM

Topic tags/keywords: aspen furniture mill log

Good afternoon all,

I will probably be thinning the woods a bit this fall and will probably take down a few 18-24” diameter big-tooth aspen trees. There is an Amish guy down the road with a sawmill, and I was thinking of having him mill those aspen logs up (along with a couple black cherry logs).

Is aspen any good for building furniture with? The big-tooth variety is technically in the same genus as poplar, and according to Wikipedia, is light, fine-textured, and fairly soft. It gets used for pulpwood, particleboard, and OSB.

Obviously I don’t want to pay to have it milled if it’s no good, but I hate to let it go to waste. We don’t go through much firewood (it’s a vacation property with a furnace). Then again, I could get really ambitious and turn it all into charcoal for blacksmithing…

-- -=Pride is not a sin=-

5 replies so far

View Grandpa's profile


3259 posts in 2644 days

#1 posted 10-26-2012 10:20 PM

I is light, soft and not very strong but you know that. I use it for part in wood toys but that would be a lot of toys in an 18” tree. I don’t think it would be good for firewood either. It is about like the white pine we could buy when I was a teenager. It should paint well. I buy it at Lowe’s or Home Depot.

View teejk's profile


1215 posts in 2653 days

#2 posted 10-26-2012 11:59 PM

...from the “poplar” arena, I bought a truckload of it for finishing out my house (door framing, trim, face frames etc.)...great to work with (easy on the tools) but I think I’d put it in the same class as clear pine for structure stuff if that helps any.

1” stock allowed to dry then glued up into 2” stock would probably be great (again from the poplar arena…it stained up much better than I thought it would…I made my fireplace mantle from it and got lucky with the grain). But it’s still pretty soft wood.

View 47phord's profile


182 posts in 2206 days

#3 posted 10-28-2012 12:36 AM

I’ve never used Aspen specifically, but poplar is good to use as a secondary wood (drawer sides, shelves that will be hidden inside a cabinet, etc.) or anything that won’t get handled alot (like teejk’s fireplace mantle) you just have to use gel stain if you want to stain it. Otherwise, it does take paint well.

View grfrazee's profile


388 posts in 2109 days

#4 posted 10-29-2012 02:07 AM

I’ve had experience with painting poplar, so I figured that aspen would be similar if it’s in the same family.

I imagine it would be good for shop furniture since I won’t care about it getting beaten up. Though durability is in question.

-- -=Pride is not a sin=-

View BentheViking's profile


1782 posts in 2533 days

#5 posted 10-29-2012 03:20 PM

I recently used some aspen for a cabinet face frame. I was planning on poplar, but I didn’t see any pieces at lowes that I liked in the size I needed. The aspen worked pretty well.

-- It's made of wood. Real sturdy.--Chubbs Peterson

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