What are some potential uses of black gum (Nyssa sylvatica)? Since you can't split the stuff, I was wondering if it might be a good species to use for cribbing. Itís much lighter than oak and wouldn't have to hold up to the elements, as cribbing is usually destroyed before it can rot anyway. I sawed some yesterday, and was surprised how nice looking the lumber was inside. Is this species used commonly for something other than firewood? I run across quite a bit of it here in PA.
(Sawing and Drying Forum)
From contributor S:
From what I've read, here and elsewhere, itís been used in furniture, similar to sweet gum, but it needs to be dried well, and stickered more than other woods, every 12", and weighted or clamped, to keep warping down. I have used sweet or red gum to make small parts that tend to split out if you use other woods.
Comment from contributor A:
Black gum is excellent for turning. It has a sweet odor when cut, a tight and tortuous grain pattern with burl characteristics, especially in the crooked limbs. I have done several turnings from a down black gum on my property, and they are beautiful. The bark does not hold well to the sapwood, however, making it difficult to turn natural edge bowls. The color of the wood is tan or pale yellow with medium brown to dark brown and black highlights. Many limb sections have large bark inclusions which add character to the turnings, but also increase the risk of the piece breaking apart during turning. Use your face shield (voice of personal experience).