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Sycamore lumber - is it worth it or this stuff junk?

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Forum topic by camps764 posted 264 days ago 919 views 0 times favorited 15 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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camps764

775 posts in 965 days


264 days ago

I’ve got an opportunity to get my hands on about 110 board feet of 4/4 sycamore for about $1.50 a B/F.

Never worked it, and never heard much about anyone working it.

What I’ve read online says that it can cup,warp and twist something awful. But pictures look sort of like lacewood/maple mix.

What do you guys and gals think? 1.50 sounds like a good price for anything.

-- Steve. Follow me on Instagram: http://instagram.com/campbellwoodworking or check me out on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/campbellwoodworkingne


15 replies so far

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Woodendeavor

211 posts in 1211 days


#1 posted 264 days ago

Sycamore is great wood when Quarter sawn. If it is not it will twist cup and warp even after it has dried. That is my personal experience

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chrisstef

10441 posts in 1611 days


#2 posted 264 days ago

From what ive heard unless its quarter sawn its really difficult to keep from cupping and twisting. I think it looks really cool when quarter sawn.

-- "there aren’t many hand tools as awe-inspiring as the #8 jointer. I mean, it just reeks of cast iron heft and hubris" - Smitty

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Tennessee

1447 posts in 1119 days


#3 posted 264 days ago

I’ve used it a couple of times when it came in a load of assorted. Not a fan.

-- Paul, Tennessee, http://www.tsunamiguitars.com

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camps764

775 posts in 965 days


#4 posted 264 days ago

Thanks for confirming fella’s. I’ll take a pass on this one, maybe pick a small bit up int he future to try out.

-- Steve. Follow me on Instagram: http://instagram.com/campbellwoodworking or check me out on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/campbellwoodworkingne

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SCOTSMAN

5281 posts in 2190 days


#5 posted 264 days ago

Wow I just bought a load earlier this year not quarter sawn.LOL trust me to get it wrong.It is all thick stock so I am hoepeful. Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

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Texcaster

634 posts in 279 days


#6 posted 264 days ago

Alistair, you probably have euro sycamore, a maple.

-- Bill....... I listen very closely to the timber and then impose my will.

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CharlieM1958

15671 posts in 2823 days


#7 posted 264 days ago

I got hold of several bf of spalted sycamore once. It worked beautifully and looked great. I actually used some of it for this:

Click for details

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

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woodsmithshop

1106 posts in 2150 days


#8 posted 264 days ago

I have only used quarter sawn, and I have had good luck with it.
American Sycamore is also a Maple

-- Smitty!!!

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ShaneA

5259 posts in 1203 days


#9 posted 264 days ago

If it is quarter sawn, that is a good price. It is easy to work with, and has a unique look.

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bannerpond1

223 posts in 503 days


#10 posted 264 days ago

I have quartersawn Indiana sycamore and it’s very stable and attractive. I saw a reference to its being called, “American lacewood.” I have some QS boards with both sapwood and heartwood and it’s very striking. I’d take all the sycamore logs I could get and have them QS. Heck, burn the rest, but the QS is worth the trouble.

-- --Dale Page

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Monte Pittman

13376 posts in 943 days


#11 posted 264 days ago

I really like the QS sycamore. I would check to see if it is QS. It might be a heck of a deal.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it. - It's not ability that we often lack, but the patience to use our ability

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Smitty_Cabinetshop

9622 posts in 1223 days


#12 posted 264 days ago

It can be beautiful stuff, it’s true. +1 to Monte’s (and others) suggestion above.

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive

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gfadvm

10604 posts in 1295 days


#13 posted 264 days ago

One of my favorites and I have found it easy to work and finish.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

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Picken5

117 posts in 1296 days


#14 posted 264 days ago

I love QS sycamore. Beautiful and pretty easy to work with — but keep your tools sharp.

-- Howard - "Time spent making sawdust is not deducted from one's lifetime." - old Scottish proverb

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WDHLT15

1079 posts in 1081 days


#15 posted 263 days ago

American sycamore is a monotype, that is, it is the only species in its genus. It is similar to maple in pore structure, but is is not a maple. The genus for sycamore is Platanus. The genus for maple is Acer. They are in different families.

Quartersawn sycamore is the most beautiful North American hardwood in my opinion. I have sawn plenty of it.

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

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