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Specialty & Unique Woods

This area of our website talks about, and shows a variety of interesting grains, colors and patterns that are sometimes found in wood.  These specialty woods can add a unique look to many woodworking projects.  All of the varieties shown below are regularly in stock, although the quantity and thicknesses available can change, so it is good to email or call ahead before coming to look through our stock.


In addition to the special items shown below, we also sometimes find unusual grains or colors in just about every type of wood we have.  It may be just a single board, or it could be a group of boards from the same tree.  It isn't practical to list them here because the availability is erratic, and they usually sell pretty quickly.  When we find this type of material, we will display it on the end caps of our rows of lumber.  This makes the material more visible and ready to purchase.  We often make up names for these boards based on what it looks like to us.  Names like "Cats Paw Cherry", "Tear Drop Ash", or "Striped Maple".  When you stop in, you can tour around the store and see if anything is available.

Pricing of these unique woods are affected by the species, the availability of a particular item, and the quality of the pattern or color in a specific board.  We price these boards individually, so it isn't possible to quote a board foot price.  Each board in our specialty bins has a price on it..


Birdseye Maple is not a distinct species.  It is almost always seen in Hard Maple, and refers to small swirls in the grain that resemble bird's eyes.  There can be quite a bit of difference from one board to another, both in the size of the eyes & the population of eyes.

Bark Pocket

Hickory is one of the more interesting woods to look at, especially when it is in a rustic grade.  There can be a lot of color contrast between the heartwood and the sapwood, along with dark streaks and knots. 


The patterns that appear in spalted boards come from an early stage of decay in the tree.  It is a fungus that grows in the tree and creates the interesting black lines in an irregular pattern.


Curly is a description of figure that is in the grain of a board.  The picture above is Curly Hard Maple.  The Curly pattern refers to the three dimensional  effect that comes from the ripples in the grain.  It almost appears as though the grain has "curled" along the length of the board.


We have included Quartersawn in our "Specialty and Unique Woods" section, but it is something that we have a regular inventory of in both Red Oak and White Oak.


We most commonly see wormy lumber in Butternut, and sometimes also in Red Oak.  The lumber comes from trees where insects got in and started to eat their way all over.  Since the wood is kiln dried, the insects are dead, but the wormy pattern is something that some folks like for a really rustic look to a project.  The size of the worm holes, and the quantity will vary from one board to another.

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