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Old February 15th 04, 08:29 AM
P van Rijckevorsel
 
Posts: n/a
Default ### Micro-FAQ on Wood # 003

1. Some Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: A Softwood is a soft wood and a Hardwood is a hard wood. Right?
A: False. A softwood is the wood of a conifer (or a Ginkgo), a hardwood is
the wood of a dicot tree. The hardest hardwood is some three times as hard
as the hardest softwood, but the hardest softwood is some four times as hard
as the softest hardwood. The softest woods in the world are hardwoods.

Q: A Conifer, that is the same thing as a Gymnosperm. Right?
A: Not quite: there are four groups of Gymnosperms, of which the Conifers
(with some six hundred species) are the biggest and most important. Ginkgo
(one species) is another. The other two groups don't yield anything that
could be regarded as timber.

Q: A wood with "cedar" in the name will be a softwood. Right?
A: False: "cedar" is a word that does not mean anything except that the wood
has a certain type of fragrance (if that). In the US "cedar" will usually be
Western Redcedar (Thuja plicata), sometimes Eastern Redcedar (Juniperus
virginiana) also marketed as Aromatic Cedar, but it could also be one of
several other woods (Calocedrus, Chamaecyparis, Juniperus, Thuja, etc). In
Central America "cedar" will usually be a Cedrela species. In SE Asia
"cedar" will usually be a Toona species. Etc, etc.

Q: "Cherry" is the wood from the Cherry tree. Right?
A: Not really. The tree that cherries grow on does yield a classic wood,
called cherry, but this has always been fairly rare (these days cherry trees
are planted in a stunted form for pickability of the fruit). There is a US
timber tree (more or less closely related) that yields a look-alike wood
almost as good, and certainly a lot more available. This is called cherry
for convenience.

Q: Brazilian Cherry is a kind of cherry. Right?
A: False. The nearest wellknown relative of Brazilian Cherry (Hymenaea),
more properly known as Red Locust or Jatoba will be Honey Locust
(Gleditsia). A (much) more distant relative is Black or Yellow Locust
(Robinia).

Q: Yellow Locust is something entirely different from Black Locust. Right?
A: They are pretty much the same. Most books will say they are the same.
Nobody seems to know for sure if they are exactly the same.

Q: Yellow Oak is something entirely different from Black Oak. Right?
A: False. They are exactly the same. It is a Red Oak, a prefered firewood.

Q: White Oak has tyloses and Red Oak doesn't. Right?
A: False: White Oak has tyloses (in its heartwood), Red Oak may or may not
have.

Q: A Live Oak is an oak that has not been cut down yet. Right?
A: False. There are three categories of genuine Oak (Quercus), found all
over the Northern Hemisphe White Oaks, Red Oaks and Live Oaks. The woods
of these three are not closely comparable in any respect. Characters that
are shared by all three woods are prominent rays and a dendritic arrangement
of pores. All in all there are some 400 species of genuine Oak. In addition
there are any number of woods called Oak, for whatever reason strikes the
fancy of a wood trader.

Q: Phillipine Mahogany is Mahogany from the Philippines. Right?
A: False. It may or may not be from the Philippines, but it won't be
Mahogany, ever.

Q: Honduras Mahogany is Mahogany from Honduras. Right?
A: Depends. It could be, but usually is not (from Honduras, that is).

Q: African Mahogany is mahogany from Africa. Right?
A: Just about. The wood of Khaya is from tropical Africa and is usually
assumed to be a Mahogany.

Q: Rhodesian Teak is teak from Rhodesia. Right?
A: False. Baikiaea plurijuga is not teak, but a member of the Pea family. It
grows in several countries of which one used to be called Rhodesia.

Q: Nigerian Teak is teak from Nigeria. Right?
A: Right. Plantation grown. Not that anybody would want to use it.

Q: Java Teak is teak from Java. Right?
A: Right. Plantation-grown, from the days the Dutch were there.

Q: Steel is stronger than wood. Right?
A: Depends. A piece of steel of a certain size will almost always be
stronger as a piece of wood the same size. A steel rod of a particular
length and mass as compared to a rod of wood ...

+ + +

2. A handful of useful sites dealing with wood:

FPL:
- intro-page of the Forest Products Laboratory:
http://www2.fpl.fs.fed.us/

- technical properties of wood
http://www2.fpl.fs.fed.us/TechSheets/techmenu.html
including two downloadable books on US-woods

- the FPL "Wood Handbook. Wood as an engineering material"
(downloadable):
http://www.fpl.fs.fed.us/documnts/FP.../fplgtr113.htm

- common and scientific names of wood
(best database around, with a fairly low level of error):
http://www2.fpl.fs.fed.us/CommNames2000.html
[apparently off-line more often than not, and usually reports:
"The system has encountered an error that was logged"]

OTHER SOURCES:
- "The American Woods" (pictures):
http://www.lib.ncsu.edu/archives/forestry/hough/

- lots of pictures (fun), but short on accuracy and real information
full version (slow):
http://www.hobbithouseinc.com/person...indextotal.htm
small version (faster):
http://www.hobbithouseinc.com/person...pics/index.htm

- for a more extensive link-page see:
http://www.nehosoc.nl/paginalinks.htm

- availability of wood (US)
http://www.woodfinder.com/

+ + +

3. BOOKS:
Good entry-level books on wood are
"Good Wood Handbook" by Albert Jackson & David Day (cheapest and best)
"Woodworker's Guide to Wood" by Rick Peters (passing grades)

An intermediate level book:
"Harvesting Urban Timber" by Sam Sherrill

Adult books on wood are
"Understanding Wood" by R. Bruce Hoadley
"Identifying Wood" by R. Bruce Hoadley

For those not shying away from a thick book:
"Holzatlas" by Rudi Wagenfuhr





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Old February 15th 04, 06:26 PM
Young_carpenter
 
Posts: n/a
Default ### Micro-FAQ on Wood # 003



--


"P van Rijckevorsel" wrote in message
...
snip
Q: A wood with "cedar" in the name will be a softwood. Right?
A: False: "cedar" is a word that does not mean anything except that the

wood
has a certain type of fragrance (if that). In the US "cedar" will usually

be
Western Redcedar (Thuja plicata), sometimes Eastern Redcedar (Juniperus
virginiana) also marketed as Aromatic Cedar, but it could also be one of
several other woods (Calocedrus, Chamaecyparis, Juniperus, Thuja, etc). In
Central America "cedar" will usually be a Cedrela species. In SE Asia
"cedar" will usually be a Toona species. Etc, etc.

I disagree with you. At least to your American reference to Cedar.
All cedars are a Conifer/evergreens (so technically they all are softwoods)
the North American cedars are a type of Cypress. They all have rot
resistant properties. The Stuff marketed often as Aromatic (closet) Cedar
is more of a cousin in the Juniper group (which I think is a Cypress family
tree anyway). However smell has little to do with classification. Cedar is
used for decks, siding, soffits due to their decay/bug resistance. I used a
white cedar for a chest I did and lined it with Aromatic Cedar. The
properties are similar but they are definitely different woods and the
smells are entirely different.

For the most part it is all semantics I know. But Facts are facts.



  #3   Report Post  
Old February 16th 04, 09:36 AM
P van Rijckevorsel
 
Posts: n/a
Default ### Micro-FAQ on Wood # 003

"P van Rijckevorsel" wrote
Q: A wood with "cedar" in the name will be a softwood. Right?
A: False: "cedar" is a word that does not mean anything except that the

wood has a certain type of fragrance (if that). In the US "cedar" will
usually be Western Redcedar (Thuja plicata), sometimes Eastern Redcedar
(Juniperus virginiana) also marketed as Aromatic Cedar, but it could also be
one of several other woods (Calocedrus, Chamaecyparis, Juniperus, Thuja,
etc). In Central America "cedar" will usually be a Cedrela species. In SE
Asia "cedar" will usually be a Toona species. Etc, etc.

Young_carpenter schreef
I disagree with you. At least to your American reference to Cedar.

All cedars are a Conifer/evergreens (so technically they all are softwoods)
the North American cedars are a type of Cypress. They all have rot
resistant properties. The Stuff marketed often as Aromatic (closet) Cedar
is more of a cousin in the Juniper group (which I think is a Cypress family
tree anyway). However smell has little to do with classification. Cedar is
used for decks, siding, soffits due to their decay/bug resistance. I used a
white cedar for a chest I did and lined it with Aromatic Cedar. The
properties are similar but they are definitely different woods and the
smells are entirely different.

For the most part it is all semantics I know. But Facts are facts.


+ + +
Facts are facts. How we deal with them is mostly semantics.
The only thing I don't see is where your disagreement lies?
PvR





  #4   Report Post  
Old February 23rd 04, 03:54 PM
Young_carpenter
 
Posts: n/a
Default ### Micro-FAQ on Wood # 003

your description


--


"P van Rijckevorsel" wrote in message
...
"P van Rijckevorsel" wrote
Q: A wood with "cedar" in the name will be a softwood. Right?
A: False: "cedar" is a word that does not mean anything except that

the
wood has a certain type of fragrance (if that). In the US "cedar" will
usually be Western Redcedar (Thuja plicata), sometimes Eastern Redcedar
(Juniperus virginiana) also marketed as Aromatic Cedar, but it could also

be
one of several other woods (Calocedrus, Chamaecyparis, Juniperus, Thuja,
etc). In Central America "cedar" will usually be a Cedrela species. In SE
Asia "cedar" will usually be a Toona species. Etc, etc.

Young_carpenter schreef
I disagree with you. At least to your American reference to Cedar.

All cedars are a Conifer/evergreens (so technically they all are

softwoods)
the North American cedars are a type of Cypress. They all have rot
resistant properties. The Stuff marketed often as Aromatic (closet) Cedar
is more of a cousin in the Juniper group (which I think is a Cypress

family
tree anyway). However smell has little to do with classification. Cedar

is
used for decks, siding, soffits due to their decay/bug resistance. I used

a
white cedar for a chest I did and lined it with Aromatic Cedar. The
properties are similar but they are definitely different woods and the
smells are entirely different.

For the most part it is all semantics I know. But Facts are facts.


+ + +
Facts are facts. How we deal with them is mostly semantics.
The only thing I don't see is where your disagreement lies?
PvR








  #5   Report Post  
Old February 24th 04, 10:30 AM
P van Rijckevorsel
 
Posts: n/a
Default ### Micro-FAQ on Wood # 003

The description is quite factual.
Can't help it if you don't like the facts.
Still, I will think on ways to make it clearer
PvR







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