Hardwood Characteristics

Common Name Color Heartwood Grain LBS/FT3 Stability Workability Applications
ALDER Western Alder
Oregon Alder
Pale yellow to reddish brown Fairly straight 33 Satisfactory Excellent Cabinet parts, furniture, laminated articles, etc.
ASH White Ash Grey brown tinged with red Straight 41 Excellent Moderate Sports bats, oars, cue sticks, tool handles, furniture, cabinet parts
American Whitewood
Creamy white to pale pinkish brown Straight and fine 26 Satisfactory Excellent Hand carving, pattern making, picture frames, toys, cabinetry
BIRCH Natural Birch
Red Birch
White Birch
Creamy white tinged with red Straight and fine 39 Excellent Moderate to easy Dowels, furniture, cabinetry, drawer sides, etc.
CEDAR Tennessee Cedar
Aromatic Cedar
Light brown to red Straight and fine/medium 36 Excellent Moderate Construction, gates, furniture, fencing, doors, etc.
CHERRY Cabinet Cherry Rich red to reddish brown Straight close grain 36 Excellent Moderate to easy Musical instruments, furniture, cabinetry, boat interiors, etc.
HICKORY Pecan Hickory Brown to reddish brown Straight to wavy w/coarse texture 49 Excellent Difficult Tool handles, chairs, furniture, cabinetry
JATOBA Locust Salmon red to orange brown – brown streaks Straight to wavy w/coarse texture 56 Excellent Difficult Furniture, cabinetry, tool handles, floors, stair treads, construction
KHAYA African Light to dark reddish brown to deep red Straight to interlocked medium texture 34-36 Excellent Excellent Furniture, cabinetry, boat building, pianos, caskets, pattern making
MAPLE Hard Maple
White Maple
Natural Maple
Creamy white to reddish brown w/tinge of red Straight w/fine and even texture 45 Satisfactory Moderate Flooring, furniture, cabinetry, musical instruments
OAK Red Oak
White Oak
Pale yellow brown to biscuit to reddish tinge Straight grain w/coarse texture 48 Satisfactory Moderate to easy Flooring, furniture, cabinetry, construction, mouldings
POPLAR Poplar Creamy white to grey to pale brown or pinkish Straight grain w/fine texture 25-28 Satisfactory Moderate Furniture framing, drawers, cabinet parts, moulding, boxes, crates
Purple violet when cut then turns to dark brown Straight grain w/fine texture 50-60 Excellent Difficult Construction, dock work, water piling, tool handles, furniture
TEAK Teak Golden brown to rich brown w/darker brown markings Straight to wavy grain w/coarse texture 38-43 Excellent Difficult Ship and boat building, outdoor furniture, flooring, cabinetry, decking
WALNUT Black Walnut
Similar to Pecan
Rich dark brown to purplish black Straight to wavy grain w/coarse texture 40 Excellent Moderate Gunstocks, musical instruments, cabinetry, furniture, clock cases