Poplar Wood

  • Advertise with us

« back to Wood & Lumber forum

Forum topic by andy6601 posted 06-10-2014 02:34 PM 1137 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View andy6601's profile


91 posts in 2432 days

06-10-2014 02:34 PM

I have been collecting poplar wood for a few years not and I am wanting some advice and information as to how well it works with hand tools. I live in central Ohio and I have been able to collect poplar fairly easy through cragslist ads and there is a sawmill not to far from me that sells it too. My thought it to use the poplar as “learning wood” so I am not hacking up high end wood. I just wanted to know if others have done this and if so maybe you could post some pictures of your projects. I also read online where you can make poplar look like more expensive wood. It sounds like a very useful wood and for the price and if I botch a piece up I don’t feel so bad. So I welcome everyone’s thoughts and opinions.

6 replies so far

View Julian's profile


1307 posts in 2654 days

#1 posted 06-10-2014 03:03 PM

I have often used poplar because it is inexpensive and fairly easy to work with hand tools. I also like that poplar is not too soft. Poplar can have some wide range in colors but I usually try and pick out boards that are closely matched. I find poplar easy to finish. You can disguise it to look like almost any kind of wood. The Woodsmith show did a project using poplar and finished it to look like walnut. I am not an expert wood finisher but have had luck finishing poplar with stains & dyes. I would suggest practice different finishes on small boards until you get a result that pleases you.

-- Julian

View MT_Stringer's profile


3160 posts in 3195 days

#2 posted 06-10-2014 03:03 PM

I used poplar to build our buffet- face frames, raised panel doors and drawer fronts, and most of the drawer boxes. :-)

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas

View bondogaposis's profile


4682 posts in 2315 days

#3 posted 06-10-2014 03:26 PM

Poplar is a great wood to work with. It machines well and is cheap and comes in wide widths free of defect. This is a cupboard I built with it, I used plywood for the panels.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View paxorion's profile


1107 posts in 2009 days

#4 posted 06-10-2014 03:28 PM

I’ve used poplar a few times, but almost always for a painted project

-- paxorion

View jtriggs's profile


177 posts in 3781 days

#5 posted 06-10-2014 03:36 PM

I’ve got the same reaction as the others who’ve posted, poplar is a very good wood for many uses. I’ve built two medicine cabinets out of it, a vanity base and several things for my work. All were painted and hold up very well. I find poplar nice to machine and easy to sand.

The color variations can be wide but if stained or dyed darkly or painted, it makes no difference.

My brother just finished a mission style bed for his grandson that was poplar. He dyed it and finished with a brushed on lacquer and he was very happy with the result.

-- Jon --Always remember, never live your life by a motto.

View andy6601's profile


91 posts in 2432 days

#6 posted 06-11-2014 11:33 AM

Thanks everyone for all of the replies and pictures MT_Stringer I really like the buffet you built and was wondering how you got to that finish because I think it looks great! Thanks again for the responses!

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics