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View Full Version : Which woods are easier to work with?



knyfeknerd
06-27-2012, 09:39 AM
I'm interested in making another western handle soon. Which woods sand easier? My first try was with Madagascar ebony and boy was it a beeaatch to work with. Are all stabilized woods going to be like this?

Dave Martell
06-27-2012, 03:20 PM
If you want something easy to work with that will give nice results pretty much guaranteed then look at stabilized maple.

kalaeb
06-27-2012, 04:33 PM
If you want something easy to work with that will give nice results pretty much guaranteed then look at stabilized maple.

+1. I love maple!

Walnut is very similar.

Burl Source
06-27-2012, 04:49 PM
I agree about stabilized maple, with the exception of heavily spalted stuff.
With Maple you can rub it on a rock and smear it with bacon fat and it will still look good.

If you have difficulty working with any woods send me a PM or call me and I will do what I can to help.

RRLOVER
06-27-2012, 05:03 PM
Redwood is very easy to sand.I find for myself the softer the wood the more difficult it is to work with.

ncowan
07-02-2012, 01:27 AM
Bocote is a dream to sand and doesn't require stabilizing due to its oil content , just seal it with 2 coats of ca glue. Preferable zap.

pkb
07-05-2012, 12:57 PM
If you have a respirator, I like Cocobolo or other rosewoods. They polish up SO nice without needing to mess with a finish. Just don't grind the end grain fast with a dull belt (which goes for maple and most other woods as well). I'm also surprised that more people don't work with olivewood.

apicius9
07-05-2012, 01:26 PM
With Maple you can rub it on a rock and smear it with bacon fat and it will still look good.

That's an innovative finish :) I agree with the maple, stabilized koa is not too fussy either. Redwood burl can be so different, I had it from soft like a sponge to very dense, all after stabilizing. But maybe the heart wood is more consistent. I had used some olive a few years ago but ran out, didn't find a good source, and then forgot about it, thanks for the reminder. The blanks I had at the time were so dense that I didn't bother with stabilizing, but it may be the smarter thing to do. I never had much luck with walnut, for some reason I find it more difficult to finish to a shine than most other woods. And rosewoods, while dense, can be easy but nasty. Today I just drilled into a piece of ebony without a mask and had to sneeze for a minute... Definitely use at least a good mask for fine particles.

Stefan