Name that wood

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Forum topic by pizn posted 08-29-2014 06:50 PM 1071 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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13 posts in 1364 days

08-29-2014 06:50 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question mahogany


I was hoping to get some help in identifying some wood scraps I got for free. The guy who gave them to me told me the first one was either S.A. Mahogany or Sapele. Some one on another forum told me it looks like Ipe though. It is very heavy and dense, about as heavy as Oak.

I found a few other pieces mixed in that are much softer and lighter, they almost look like cedar to me but I’m new at woodworking so I have no idea. They don’t smell like cedar at least.

10 replies so far

View Ripthorn's profile


1458 posts in 2983 days

#1 posted 08-29-2014 07:15 PM

Both of those scream mahogany to me, most likely African. The pore structure and color are dead giveaways. Depending on the tree the stuff can be super light or super heavy or anywhere in between. None of my ipe has ever looked like that, but all my mahogany has.

-- Brian T. - Exact science is not an exact science

View Kaleb the Swede's profile

Kaleb the Swede

1833 posts in 1967 days

#2 posted 08-29-2014 07:15 PM

Hi there pizn and first welcome to lumberjocks. I think what you have is a common grade mahogany or sapele. I am sitting outside right now at my ipe and cedar table. All of the ipe that I have had is a good deal darker than the picture you are showing. I am pretty sure that it is sapele. Maybe the more experienced guys will chime in. If you go to the fifth picture in my project you will see the raw ipe. Hope this helps.

Either way it’s really nice wood.

Click for details

-- Just trying to build something beautiful

View pizn's profile


13 posts in 1364 days

#3 posted 08-29-2014 07:18 PM

Thanks a lot guys. As much as I would love for it to be Ipe, I’m fine with it being Mahogany. Good to know that it can be varying weights and densities.

View bobasaurus's profile


3448 posts in 3182 days

#4 posted 08-29-2014 07:36 PM

I’d also say African Mahogany. I’ve used a bunch and it looks just like that.

-- Allen, Colorado (Instagram @bobasaurus_woodworking)

View palaswood's profile


995 posts in 1749 days

#5 posted 08-29-2014 09:40 PM

+1 mahogany
-1 Ipe (never seen ipe like that)

post an End grain pic after you slice it with a razor blade

Love guessing :)

-- Joseph, Irvine CA, @palas_woodcraft on Instagram

View LiveEdge's profile


584 posts in 1618 days

#6 posted 08-29-2014 10:14 PM

I’m pretty sure Ipe would look at your hand plane and laugh and laugh and laugh…

It also doesn’t get that wide as far as I know.

View pizn's profile


13 posts in 1364 days

#7 posted 08-29-2014 11:44 PM

Here’s the end-grain after I cleaned it up a bit.

View JayG46's profile


139 posts in 1856 days

#8 posted 08-30-2014 01:47 AM

It looks like Honduran mahogany to me with all the reversing grain and open pores. Sapele is generally a little more red. Definitely not ipe, which is unmistakably hard and heavy not to mention much darker brown as was stated above. .

-- Jay Gargiulo, Naples, FL "Once you understand the way broadly, you can see it in all things."- Miyamoto Musashi

View shampeon's profile


1775 posts in 2181 days

#9 posted 08-30-2014 02:00 AM

Definitely looks like a mahogany, but it could also be meranti/luan. Aka “Philippine mahogany.” It’s a little lighter than Honduran mahogany or khaya.

-- ian | "You can't stop what's coming. It ain't all waiting on you. That's vanity."

View DonBoston's profile


81 posts in 1460 days

#10 posted 08-30-2014 03:35 AM

+1 for Honduran Mahogany…

-- Don Boston RECreations by Don

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