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Woodworking with Various Wood Species

How to Work with Different Popular Types of Wood


There are numerous species of wood that are used for woodworking around the world. Each species has different rules for getting the most out of that particular type of wood. In this list, find woodworking tips for dealing with just a few of the most popular varieties of wood used for woodworking, such as oak, maple, pine and more.

1. Oak

Woodworking with Oak
(c) 2010 Chris Baylor licensed to About.com, Inc.

Oak is one of the most popular woods utilized in furniture making. There are many varieties of oak, but most have very similar qualities for woodworking. While oak has a very distinct, sought-after appearance, it can be a difficult wood to work with. However, by following some specific guidelines, you can overcome the difficulties commonplace to working with oak and get great results from your oak woodworking projects.

2. Maple

Woodworking with Maple
(c) 2010 Chris Baylor licensed to About.com, Inc.

Maple is another very popular wood used in furniture-building. Maple is quite durable, and when finished using proper techniques, will provide a very distinct look. Woodworking with maple can be a trying experience, particularly when it comes to applying a finish. In this article, learn how to get the best out of maple in your woodworking projects.

3. Poplar

Woodworking with Poplar
(c) 2010 Chris Baylor licensed to About.com, Inc.

Poplar is a more utilitarian-type of hardwood which is commonly used on woodworking projects that will receive paint. While poplar can be stained, it isn't a very appealing wood with a stained appearance, as it often will show brown or gray sections (rather than grain lines) in the wood. A place where poplar excels is as a structural wood, because it is relatively inexpensive and durable, making it an ideal choice for carcases, drawer boxes and other similar projects. Learn how to use poplar in your woodworking projects with the tips in this woodworking article.

4. Pine

Woodworking with Pine
(c) 2010 Chris Baylor licensed to About.com, Inc.

Pine is one of the three types of softwoods that make up the SPF class (spruce, pine & fir) commonly readily available at home centers. However, all pine is not utilitarian, as some stable varieties such as long-leaf pine can be used to make some spectacular furniture projects. In this article, learn all about how to use pine in your woodworking projects.

5. Ipe

Brazilian Ipe
(c) 2010 Chris Baylor licensed to About.com, Inc.

Ipe is a somewhat controversial hardwood from Brazil known for strength and water resistance. The controversy centers aroud whether the wood may or may not be harvested from a rain forest or from a farm that specializes in ipe. You may find as many as ten different varieties of Brazilian ipe at the home center. While it has a distinct appearance and is commonly used as a deck material, there are specific precautions one should take when working with ipe. Learn all about how to use ipe in this woodworking article.

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