A Butt Log Identification Puzzle
Are these logs American Beechnut, Red Elm, Butternut, or what? In this long and detailed thread, sawmillers discuss the characteristics that could be clues. November 16, 2011

Analyzing Wood Species, Grain, and Sawing Methods
Here's a long and complex (but very informative) thread that starts off with a wood identification problem, moves into a discussion of wood pore structure, and then takes off on an interesting tangent about quartersawing, flatsawing, and other methods for piecing out a log. March 22, 2013

Processing trees to lumber -- for the hobbyist
A primer on sawing and drying lumber for projects at home. March 13, 2001

Distinguishing Honey Locust and Black Locust
They're both beautiful and valuable woods here's an extended discussion on how to tell them apart. May 11, 2005

What Does "Old Growth" Mean
The sawing and drying forum discusses what "old growth" means when used to describe lumber, and what qualities "old growth" wood may or may not have. May 14, 2006

Another Wood Identification Conundrum
Another unknown wood gets a close look from the Woodweb detective crew. Could it be Paulownia? January 18, 2012

Aging yellow cedar
Attaining the look of naturally aged yellow cedar. September 2, 2002

Types of Mahogany
Here's a little in-depth info about the various wood species that are labeled "Mahogany." March 13, 2014


Wood Identification Puzzle: Mahogany or What?
After some wild guesswork, we get the answer from the experts at FPL: not Mahogany, but Makore. August 21, 2012

Another Wood Identification Mystery
The Woodweb detective team works on another wood identification case (probably Maple, this time). March 28, 2010

Pecan vs. Hickory
A wealth of information on these two very closely related wood species. July 5, 2006

Wood Identification Puzzle
Once again, the wood detectives try to identify some boards from pictures. Elm, Hickory, and Ash are the likely suspects. February 15, 2009

A Wood Identification Puzzle
No solid answers for this mixed selection of antique boards, but an interesting lesson from the Wood Doctor on the step-by-step method of identifying wood based on end grain. January 12, 2015

Value of Antique Douglas Fir Beams
Taking a look at some reclaimed timbers, and trying to estimate their worth. March 28, 2010

Toxicity of Black Locust
The leaves, bark and wood of Black Locust are poisonous to both people and livestock. March 31, 2008

"Water Oak" Versus "Pin Oak"
Locally common names for Oak varieties can cause confusion. Here's a discussion of some Oak tree varieties and some information on their characteristics. February 9, 2008

Another Wood Identification Puzzle
Sycamore? Beech? Mulberry? The forum takes a look at some old wood found in a barn and destined to be made into guitar bodies. January 28, 2013

Distinguishing White Oak from Red
Methods for discerning different oak types. May 19, 2004

Alternatives to Honduran Mahogany
A discussion of the qualities of some of the woods used as substitutes for Mahogany, plus an attempt to clear up some of the confusion around the much-misused "Mahogany" label. February 5, 2007

Hard vs. soft maple
Can these maples be mixed, and what are the differences? January 21, 2002

"China Cedar" -- What Is It?
"China Cedar" is a separate species grown in the Far East. However, Cedar logs from America do get sent to China and come back to North America as lumber, complicating the picture. December 30, 2007

Claro Walnut Characteristics
Details on the origin and behavior of Claro Walnut wood. October 23, 2007

Qualities of Ironwood (Also Called "Hornbeam")
"American Hornbeam" and "Hop Hornbeam" are hard and strong, especially well suited for tool handles and timber-frame pegs. May 14, 2006

Arborvitae Lumber
A discussion of the likely lumber characteristics of a yard tree described as Arborvitae. May 18, 2010

Showing Off Some Curly Maple
A bandmill operator shares photos of a huge curly maple log, before and after sawing. December 15, 2005

Milling Valley Oak
Advice on getting some value out of a bodacious tree trunk from the hills outside San Francisco. January 17, 2011

Alder as a cherry substitute
Appropriate substitutes for cherry, and how to stain them. November 21, 2000

Oak, Gum or Tupelo?
Another wood identification problem. January 29, 2009

Jarah
and we do mean HARD. 1998.

Treated pine vs. cedar
The Wood Doctor offers his prognosis for outdoor projects using cedar and treated pine. 1998.

Do I Have White or Red Oak?
Woodweb wood detectives take on another case. April 30, 2009

Identifying an Oak Log
but what does it smell like? February 14, 2006

Wood I.D. Puzzle
Another guessing game about wood species this time, a hurricane-downed log from south Texas. April 18, 2009

Recognizing a Big-Leaf Maple Burl
This big burl, received as a gift, is identified as the western species Big-Leaf Maple by woodworkers familiar with that wood. December 23, 2014

How to Tell Maple Plywood from Birch
Made into plywood, the two species look similar. Here are tips on telling them apart. January 11, 2007

Working with Ash
Beautiful and easy to work, ash also ages well. Fans discuss ash and its virtues in this thread from the Architectural Woodworking forum. November 9, 2005

Sawing Dawn Redwood
A discussion of the characteristics of lumber sawn from Dawn Redwood. March 28, 2010

Characteristics of padauk
Basic characteristics of this beautiful, brilliant-red wood. October 10, 2000

Characteristics of Utile Wood
Expert info on that exotic African wood known as Utile. October 23, 2007

Parenchyma Cell Rings and Wood Grain
Info about parynchyma cell rings, a structure similar to growth rings that can affect the appearance of sawn lumber. October 1, 2009

Mahogany Supply and Varieties
More info on what "Mahogany" really means, and information on the availability of various types. April 6, 2007

Pecan Versus Hickory Wood
What's the difference? The tree species are from related groups, and the wood is often considered interchangeable. April 24, 2006

Wood Identification Problem (Western Walnut)
Sawmillers discuss the differences among Eastern and Western varieties of Walnut (and Butternut). January 2, 2012

Osage Orange Uses
Osage Orange is prized for traditional bow-making and other valued uses. April 18, 2009

Red Oak or White Oak?
More info on a question that comes up often. October 12, 2007

Red Oak, White Oak, Black Oak, and More
but there's more to the story than that. This thread offers a few little-known facts about oak varieties. June 20, 2005

Identifying Black Locust
A woodturner tries to figure out if the wood he's using is Black Locust. February 15, 2009

Uses for Yellow Poplar
Yellow Poplar makes excellent paint-grade cabinetry and trim, and can even be stained to resemble Cherry. April 27, 2007

Common Names for Tropical Woods
Woodworkers help compile an extensive list of common names for Central American wood species. February 15, 2009

Eastern White Pine Wood Identification Puzzle
Based on that gnarly knot and the back story, it's most likely Eastern White Pine. July 11, 2013

Deodar Cedar -- What's It Good For?
A little information but few answers about an ornamental Cedar variety that sometimes finds its way to a sawmill. December 30, 2007

Burmese Versus Plantation Teak
A quick discussion of Asian and South American varieties of wood marketed as "Teak" July 13, 2010

Characteristics and Value of Catalpa Wood
Catalpa makes beautiful furniture, as these examples show. February 3, 2011

Chestnut
Horse chestnut, and why it's the only live type of this wood available. September 6, 2000

Birch Varieties Explained
The Wood Doctor lists the various species of Birch tree in North America and relates them to lumber for sale on the market. July 12, 2013

Telling Hard and Soft Maple Apart
The two types of maple have different densities and different end grain appearance. There's also a chemical test. December 6, 2006

Telling Red Pine from White Pine Logs
Branch whorls aren't much help, but compare early and late wood growth. February 26, 2005

Identifying a Burl
Several votes for Bigleaf Maple, and one for Buckeye, in this show-and-tell of an interesting burl destined to become a tabletop. October 19, 2013

Distinguishing Hard and Soft Maple Under a Hand Lens
Distinctive ray patterns set hard and soft maple apart. October 4, 2007

It's Not Cherry What Is It?
Experts try to identify a log that was purchased as Cherry, but is really something else. October 29, 2008

Another Case for the Wood Detectives
Woodweb's tree identification team is never afraid to tackle another gnarly log. January 29, 2009

Distinguishing Western Hemlock from Amabilis Fir
Tips on how to tell apart two very similar trees. April 20, 2006

Hardwood Utilization Book Review
"The Management, Manufacture and Marketing of California Black Oak, Pacific Madrone and Tanoak" covers the various aspects encountered by the forester, the logger, the sawmill manager, the marketing people, and the business owner - 1998

Resources for Southern Tree Identification
How to find information on identifying trees in Louisiana and vicinity. March 3, 2006

Cedar and Cypress Aromas
Different fragrant woods have different subjective aromas that make up part of their usefulness. June 15, 2014

You say pecan, I say hickory
Pecan lumber is usually sold as hickory. June 20, 2000

"False Acacia" (a.k.a. Black Locust)
Black Locust is known in Europe as "False Acacia." Here's some info about the species and the lumber. October 15, 2010

Wood Identification Tips
Chemical tests don't work for most species, and identifying by eye takes practice. October 8, 2005

Heart pine, defined
Forum contributors define heart pine discuss differences between heartwood, sapwood and pith. August 12, 2001

Is Eastern red cedar toxic?
Eastern red cedar does not share some of the reaction-generating characteristics of its Western namesake. 1998.

Comparing Western and Eastern cedars
Both Eastern white and Western red cedars have their virtues; the Wood Doctor provides details. 1998.

Cottonwood Facts
An assortment of trivia about an under-appreciated wood species. October 2, 2005

Identifying Birch in Lumber Form
How to see through the various brand names applied to birch lumber. January 20, 2010

"Mahogany" One Name, Many Species
Here's a rundown on the official species names of the many different trees whose wood is sold as "mahogany".March 29, 2006

Harmful saw dust
Steering clear of cedar dust, and what could happen if you don't. January 16, 2001

Red cedar vs. white cedar siding
The differences between the two woods, specifically, their suitability for use as siding. October 17, 2000

Telling Basswood from Cottonwood
A few clues that are useful in distinguishing Basswood from Cottonwood. June 14, 2014

: Redheart, described and defined
"Redheart" is just another name for... 1998.

Different Kinds of Cedar
A quick run-through of the various tree species commonly referred to as "Cedar". January 19, 2012

Black Cherry, Choke Cherry, Pin Cherry
What people call "cherry" is not all the same, or all equally valuable. November 18, 2006

Distinguishing Red Oak from White Oak Using Chemistry
Sodium nitrite discolors white oak, but not red oak. Check out the picture. January 14, 2009

How to Tell Black Oak from Cherry
Black Oak and Cherry have similarities and differences. June 14, 2014

Identifying Old Pine Planks
The Woodweb crew checks out some photos of what is probably Southern Yellow Pine, and possibly Longleaf Pine. September 6, 2010

Woods for outdoor furniture
A manufacturer of outdoor furniture consults the Wood Doctor for help with choosing a species to replace beech. 1998.

Comparing Sapele to Mahogany
Woodworkers discuss the visual appearance and working characteristics of Sapele wood. April 9, 2008

Controlling color in air-dried alder
Ideas for achieving color uniformity when air-drying alder. July 26, 2000

Qualities and Uses for Sweet Gum
A small sawmiller sees his first load of Gum wood, and gets advice about its value and how to handle it. June 22, 2005

Identifying Pignut Hickory
Forum members identify Pignut Hickory by looking at photos of the leaves, stems, and bark. November 28, 2014

Facts about Tulip Wood
Most "Tulip" is a variety of Poplar, and it can have interesting traits. October 2, 2005

Hickory or Pecan
Ideas for telling two highly similar plywood faces apart. February 25, 2005

Black ash uses
White ash, black ash, and their various uses. July 26, 2000

Identifying Pecan vs. Hickory
Pecan is hard to tell apart from Hickory. April 15, 2012

Laminating different species
In a triple lamination, it's OK to use two species of lumber, given a few conditions. 1998.

Iroko Wood Tearout
This tropical hardwood (a good substitute for teak) can be tough on saw blades and moulder knives. December 1, 2005

Working with Iroko Wood
It's sometimes called "African Teak," but Iroko is not Teak, and does not act like Teak. May 7, 2007

Rotted siding
Gene Wengert helps a homeowner with a question about decaying siding. 1998.

Identifying Pecan
Pecan is hard to tell apart from Hickory. July 6, 2012

Thoughts on sweetgum
A quick primer on sweetgum. July 4, 2000

Relative densities of various birches
The Wood Doctor offers resources for information on the relative densities of birch lumbers, and offers an opinion on plastic laminate. 1998.

Curly White Oak
Sawyers show off examples of figured white oak. December 1, 2005

Know your maples
A primer on different types of maple lumber. August 23, 2000

A rubberwood primer
Rubberwood's machinability and comparability to teak. January 31, 2001

Identifying "Diamond Willow"
Woodweb members recognize the unique shape of "diamond willow." Here's a photo. February 1, 2015

Durability of Locust Varieties
Black locust is the same as yellow locust, and it's more durable than honey locust. December 1, 2005

Characteristics of butt log lumber
Denser, darker wood than the rest of that from the same laod may be from butt logs. 1998.

Identifying bird's eye maple
What causes the unique patterns in bird's eye maple lumber? 1998.

Defining "Cedro Arana" Wood
More information about an unfamiliar tropical wood species, Cedro Arana. September 19, 2009

Tree identification guide
Recommended resources for identifying the trees in your region. February 28, 2001

Exterior Performance of Balau Wood
Here's a little information on Balau, a durable Southeast Asian tropical hardwood. October 19, 2013

Bur oak, a.k.a. white oak
Information about various types of white oak, of which 'bur oak' is one. August 23, 2000

Carob Wood
This short thread is worth a glance just for the photo of sawn Carob logs. January 25, 2010

Australian lace wood
Characteristics of this unusual wood. 1998.

Clickable Tree Species Map
Locate tree species by hardiness zone, state or province. December 18, 2002

Tiger stripe effect -- what causes it?
What causes tiger stripe in wood? July 3, 2001

American Chestnut Log Identification
The Woodweb detective team tries to determine if one of the group has found a large American Chestnut log in a firewood pile. March 9, 2010

Mahogany Versus Sapele for an Outdoor Structure
A long discussion about different flavors of Mahogany, their sources and qualities, and how they compare with Sapele for durability and quality. March 26, 2010

Mixing African and Honduras Mahogany
A long discussion of the woodworking characteristics of various Mahogany types and substitutes, and the practicality of combining different woods in a single door. June 29, 2008

Budget Alternatives to Teak
A search for "poor man's Teak" evolves into a discussion of customers, their tastes and motivations. December 30, 2005

WOODPRO - Species Selection Made Easy
A free complete working computer program (that can be downloaded at WOODWEB), allowing woodworkers to select the most suitable wood species for any particular application - 1997

Guess the Wood
Another wood identification mystery leaves the Woodweb forum guessing. What species is this highly figured, iridescent, almost glowing orange/yellow burl in a unique table. April 20, 2011

Mahogany Color Match Conundrum
Cut one stick in two pieces, and the pieces won't match. Whattayagonna do? April 16, 2009

Is Western Hemlock Suitable for Doors and Window Sash?
A discussion of the properties and best use of Hemlock. September 7, 2013

10,000-Year-Old Mystery Wood
Sawmillers try to guess the species of wood recovered after thousands of years buried in the mud. November 13, 2005

Identifying the Wood Species for an Antique Chair
April 18, 2010

Choosing Wood for an Exterior Door
What species will provide good looks and durability? Craftsman trade opinions. July 2, 2005

What the Heck is "Honduran Black Walnut"?
Woodweb pros discuss the opportunities, risks, and unknowns inherent in buying lumber from foreign sources at arm's length. September 7, 2013

A "Green" Finish for a Cuban Mahogany Bench
Thoughts on the meaning of environmental correctness for clear wood finishes, and some interesting history about Cuban Mahogany, a nearly-extinct wood that is making a comeback. March 4, 2009

Yellow Cedar Characteristics
Not a true Cedar, Yellow Cedar grows mainly on the northern Pacific coast of North America. Here is some info about its useful properties. April 2, 2013

American Chestnut Versus Chinese Chestnut
A discussion of the American Chestnut and the Chinese Chestnut, with regard to wood appearance and blight resistance. May 16, 2008

Hard maple versus soft Maple
Aesthetic and functional differences between hard and soft maple

Hard Versus Soft Maple
Quick basic info on hard and soft Maple. September 27, 2009

Guess the Wood Again
Eyeballing a wooden chest and trying to guess the species. (It's not Walnut.) April 20, 2011

What is "fuming"?
Explanations of the process of fuming wood for color. April 11, 2001