woodworking with soft maple

Start with 120 grit before moving up to 180, and finally 220. Silverleaf maple is most commonly called silver maple. You won’t find maple at your local home center, but most lumberyards have a … Get DIY project ideas and easy-to-follow crafts to help you spruce up your space. Maple is considered one of the best woods to work with and is compatible with all types of the finishes. For more related content, subscribe to our newsletter! Soft maple is also often referred to as "tiger maple" for the tiger-like stripes in the wood, or curly maple if the stripes are a bit more of the curly nature. The kind of furniture people wants to build entirely depends on the type of maple wood that is chosen. Soft maple dowels bow more (almost 1/2 inch versus less than 1/4 inch on hard maple of the same 26" lengths) and sometimes break. Generally straight-grained with a consistent texture, maple also can have a bird's-eye or curly (also called fiddle back) pattern. This is often referred to as "birds-eye maple." Advantages/ Pros The maple wood comes with various advantages/ pros out of which some are mentioned below: 1. Maple has 2 varieties, a harder variety and a softer variety. It's also strong enough not to crack or deform. I got some Soft Maple the other day and I'm going to make a small bookcase. If you are a beginner, we would recommend that you start with the softer variety. /r/woodworking is your home on reddit for furniture, toys, tools, wood, glue, and anything else that has to do with woodworking as a hobby or profession. Soft maple, on the other hand, is relatively easy to work with. Hard maple is a particular spiecies of tree, where as soft maple can be a number of maple like trees, you may find results vary a bit when finishing soft maple. Generally speaking maples are a great all round woodworking lumber. Treatment needs to be taken to make sure that grain colors and patterns between bordering boards must match as very closely as possible. home | projects | blog. Then, using some 320 grit paper, sand exposed end grain, which tends to stain more heavily. 1 reply so far. Soft maple can be sourced from many different types of maple trees. I dont know about others, but I typically do not attach my benches to the floor. Taking the hardness data within context of other hardwoods, soft maple may be used as a valid substitute for hard maple in most situations where a hardwood of moderate density is called for. This is particularly effective with tiger-striped maple used on drawer fronts and cabinet doors. Working with sharp tools on hardwoods is not only going to produce better results, but it is safer than if they are a bit dull, simply because the tools will cut cleaner and be less prone to tearing through the wood. The Tree: Acer Family Maple does have its drawbacks. There are two different types of maple wood in woodworking, hard maple, and soft maple. Although not as tough, stiff, or heavy as hard maple, soft maple tends to resist warping and twisting better. Twenty-three species of maple grow in Canada and the U.S. Post Cancel. Hard maple takes a high polish and has substantial screw-holding power. Many woodworkers will go as far as to buy thick maple stock and resaw it on a band saw, aligning the cut sides together for a perfectly matched pair of panels. Follow the oil with a coat or two of shellac. It glues, stains, and finishes well but doesn't take as high a polish as hard maple. Common Names Red maple, silver maple, Pacific maple, Oregon maple, bigleaf maple Any floor mounting system will likely jeopordize your radiant heat tubes, so you will wont want to fasten that way. Probably our most useful domestic hardwood, maple produces syrup for pancakes, school desks to scribble on... and much more in between. Soft maple is also often referred to as "tiger maple" for the tiger-like stripes in the wood, or curly maple, if the stripes are a bit more of the curly nature. An Enticing Species: This maple is not soft on its dramatic figure choices. Many woodworkers find the unique grain patterns of maple burl particularly appealing. Acer Negundo (Soft Maple, Manitoba Maple, Box-elder, Ash-Leaf Maple) Soft maples are less than 0.54 density (Red, SIlver) Density -- .46 for Manitoba Maple (Ash Maple) Compared to Acer saccharum -- density .63 (Sugar Maple) Density correlates closely to hardness -- so yes soft maple will be a _lot_ easier to work. Comment. The largest quantities of hard maple are found around the Great Lakes, and Michigan and New York produce the most trees in this country. It is one of the two major species (silver and red) that combine to the group called soft maple. The harder wood is very difficult to work with and should only be worked with by trained hands. Ft.-26.54% lighter than red oak (3.58 /bd. Thanks! They both have their uses, my painted cabinets are all soft maple, while I use hard maple for cutting boards. Today we build a shop stool out of Walnut and Hard Maple. Grizzly H9687 Solid Maple Workbench Top. Good 3/10 . Soft maple is slightly less dense and not as strong. Soft maple is best for projects where the workability is paramount, such as cabinet frames, hidden parts of furniture, small woodcarving projects, and household items (such as wooden spoons). This is often referred to as "birds-eye maple.". The term "fiddle-back maple" came from this industry, as properly matched boards would be used to make the large back panels of guitars and fiddles. First of all, soft maple and red maple are typically the same things. The key to evening out the stain is to sand the project thoroughly, using progressively finer sandpaper grits. The Maple comes in both soft and hardwood types. If I need the extra stability, I would mount to wall studs. Part of the beauty of a properly built piece of maple furniture comes from the proper matching of corresponding boards. Maple sapwood has a clean, white appearance, is free from defects, and is typically 3" to 5" thick. All Rights Reserved. … If the stain cannot find a pore to fill, it will be cleared away when the excess stain is wiped away. Soft Maple is a group of three or four types of maple: red, silver, black etc.... somewhat dependent on what part of the country you live in." Hard maple flourishes west and south from southeastern Canada and Maine to Minnesota, Missouri, and Alabama. It’s healthier and most days I … Although not as tough, stiff, or heavy as hard maple, soft maple tends to … Hard maple varieties often will have more small knots that appear along the grain. I do like the color and figure that I can get locally in soft maple and have used it for legs on benches, but where strength is necessary, I stick with hard maple. I have pretty much exactly the amount I need for the project and I'd rather not buy more. Non skid feet may help too. Doesn’t have anything to do with how it was cut. The name struck, and the terms "rock maple" and "rock-hard maple" remain popular today. Soft maple is also often referred to as "tiger maple" for the tiger-like stripes in the wood, or curly maple if the stripes are a bit more of the curly nature. Bill-- Bill - in New Hampshire. Generally straight-grained with a consistent texture, maple also can have a bird's-eye or curly (also called fiddle back) pattern. Woodworking with Maple Part of the beauty of an effectively constructed item of maple furnishings comes from the proper matching of matching boards. This won't completely solve the problem, though. Welcome to another WoodShaped video. Maple is generally considered to be strong, durable, and pretty when properly finished. For those customers who need a larger surface for their workbench and woodworking projects, the Grizzly H9687 Solid Maple Workbench Top is an excellent choice. TravisH. For as long as I've been woodworking, I'm embarrassed to admit I hadn't heard of silver maple until recently. Soft maple works even more easily than hard maple. I’m definitely all about standing and staying on your feet. Maple is one of the best choices for hardwood flooring because of its incredible strength, good looks, and readiness to take a stain. Soft Maple grows in North America Weight 2.63 lbs /Bd. To begin with, it’s important to understand the density and weight of both types when it comes to woodworking. Hard maple varieties often will have more small knots that appear along the grain. I looked for box elder and can't find any reference but to a box elder bug. Fine 3/10 . They also tend to be less expensive than other hardwoods. I was building a corner cabinet when I realized my workbench wasn’t quite wide enough for the... read more. Chris is a freelance writer who specializes in woodworking, designs his own projects, and is experienced in commercial carpentry. Hard maple comes in average lengths of 6' to 12' and average widths of 6" to 10", while soft maple trees tend to produce somewhat wider boards. and 2. what is this grey wood, and is is commonly found in Soft Maple? So far I've done two projects with pine from the big box store. Hard maple is a wonderful, expensive, nearly white wood used for almost every application imaginable both today and even prior to the colonization of the U.S. By using The Spruce Crafts, you accept our, Tips for Using Poplar in Woodworking Projects, How to French Polish Your Woodworking Project, How to Get the Best Results Woodworking With Oak, How to Color-Match Wood Filler to Stained Wood, Applying Polyurethane for a Durable, Beautiful Finish, How to Apply a Beautiful Shellac Finish on Woodwork. AlArchie. Compared to red maple, silver maple is a bit lower in density and therefore machines a bit more easily with a slight increase in tendency to fuzz. Soft maple, although similar in appearance to hard maple, produces lighter wood with more pronounced grain. I usually use either soft maple or hard maple. These oils tend to bring out the curly or tiger looks of the maple. Red Oak . Good 3/10 . 2.Lindenwood/Limewood: The wood of the linden tree , which is also a hardwood, is ideal for carving. The soft maples are often used as a cheaper substitute for hard maple mouldings, or in applications where the trim is painted. Samples are milled on all sides to the standard size of 1/2'' X 3'' X 6'', as determined by The International Wood Collectors Society, and include the shipping cost within the 48 U.S. Each one is labeled with the botanical and common names. Silver maple is soft compared to sugar (hard) maple, but that isn’t saying much. Because of their fine, straight grain, both varieties are more stable than many other woods. Hard maple varieties often will have more small knots that appear along the grain. © 2020 Meredith Corporation. Soft maple, although similar in appearance to hard maple, produces lighter wood with more pronounced grain. Soft maple, used principally for lumber, paper pulp, and other industrial applications, continues to be suitable for cabinet frames, unseen parts of upholstered furniture, and jigs and forms used in woodworking shops. It can be temperamental, particularly when finishing, and is susceptible to shrinkage. Try to evenly sand the entire project with this final sanding. So, what you have is regular soft maple. Sanding the end grain with finer grit will fill the pores of the end grain a bit more. Stains tend to fill pores, cracks, and crevices in wood. That makes it a highly sustainable material that is easy to access as needed by manufacturers. Learn about woodworking with Curly Maple Maple Curly Hardwood Sample (1/2"x3"x6") Get your hands on a wood you've never tried before! Hard maple is the perfect choice for sturdy furniture such as benches, butcher boards, … Soft Maple – is that just referring to the way it is cut, or is it a special species of tree. For years, maple was the wood of choice for building musical instruments. Many woodworkers find the unique grain patterns of maple burl particularly appealing. Just trying to get straight on all of this, as it would be great to find something to carve a large dough bowl from. I make a lot of jam chucks for lathe turning and I find that maple works best because it's generally fine grained and turns relatively easily and accurately. How can I keep my router bushing assembly in place? Scrollsaw, Carving, and Decorative Projects, Hardness ratings help you choose the right species. Maple is a very stable wood, which makes it an excellent option for any piece of furniture. Maple: Maple , which is a hardwood, is particularly popular for carving As solid wood, this valuable hardwood is preferably used for turning and carving work because is moderately hard and easy to work with. Compared to sugar (hard) maple, cherry and walnut are softwoods too. They form two broad commercial groups: soft maple and hard, or "sugar," maple—which is tapped each spring for its sap. Red Oak . ft.) Hardness 950 Janka Rating -26.36% softer than red oak (1290 psi) Density 0.54 Specific Gravity -15.62% less dense than red oak (.64) General Workability. The light cream color and tight smooth grain of this wood make for smart flooring. Red Oak . Both varieties are harder than many other woods; hard maple is so hard (a 5 on a scale of 1 to 5) that it’s difficult to work with. Since maple is such a hard wood, be certain that your tools, blades, and bits are particularly clean and sharp. Please submit links to how-to pages and videos, pictures of beautiful and amazing pieces you made for us to admire, or help you finish. Hard maple remains strong when bent, absorbs shock well, works nicely with both power and hand tools, and resists wear. Super Moderator. Family Name Acer rubrum, Acer saccharinum, Acer macrophyllum and Acer negundo of the Family Aceraceae. Care should be taken to ensure that grain colors and patterns between neighboring boards should match as closely as possible. When buying maple from your lumber supplier, you may hear plenty of names for the wood: tiger maple, curly maple, birds-eye maple, fiddle back maple, red maple, soft maple, hard maple—the list goes on. This is often referred to as "birds-eye maple." Furniture Making: The wood has awesome endurance and strength that is the reason it is widely used for making different … Wood Texture. It also turns well and requires no filling before finishing. For generations, in fact, hard maple has been used for furniture and other items that take abuse: desks, workbenches and butcher blocks, for example. It's simple. These qualities make it more valuable than heartwood, which is uniform in color and runs from light reddish brown to dark brown. When applying a stain, be sure to use a ​pre-stain conditioner to try and even out the "blotchy" patches that tend to appear. Its color ranges from pale brown to almost white with brown streaks. 745 posts in 2871 days #1 posted 12-18-2020 04:19 AM . Another commonly used finishing technique on maple is to apply tung oil or linseed oil after the final sanding. During the 1700s, a cabinetmaker named Rock manufactured "Rock's Hard Maple Furniture." Soft Maple is Highly Sustainable. Maple is a relatively inexpensive hardwood, although bird's-eye, curly, and burl varieties can be expensive. The Spruce Crafts uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. Hard maple is commonly used for butcher blocks, tool handles, visible portions of furniture, and even bowling alley lanes! For years, maple was the wood of choice for building musical instruments. Several woodworkers will go as far as to buy thick maple supply and resaw it on a band saw, lining up the cut … As with other hardwoods such as cherry, maple can be a bit temperamental to finish, particularly when staining. For a more durable finish, top-coat over the shellac with a clear lacquer or polyurethane. Lightly wipe down the entire project before applying a pre-stain conditioner, followed shortly thereafter by the stain of your choice. Maple. Both types are widely available and can be bought as lumber, veneer, and turning blocks. Along with cherry, walnut, and oak, maple is considered to be among the favorite hardwood choices for furniture building. The term soft maple is a bit of a comparative misnomer, as soft maple is harder than many other hardwoods (such as cherry). Both categories of maple are extremely useful, but hard maple may require some extra effort as … Ease of Finishing. In addition, soft maple is slightly easier to work with, and won’t dull cutting edges as quickly, or burn as readily when being shaped as hard maple. Soft maple follows the same range, but grows in damper ground--lowlands, swamps, and stream banks. How to install metal slides on wood cabinets. It is used extensively in the box making industry, and often soft maple boxes are then covered with decorative wood veneers. Hard maple applications include bowling alley surfaces, chopping blocks, piano frames, turnings, furniture (particularly figured-wood pieces), ladder rungs, rules, tool handles, and even clothespins. Making sure that your maple is well-seasoned and properly acclimatized to your environment will make a big difference in how your maple woodworking projects turn out and how they hold up over time. Be certain that your tools, and finally 220 defects, and often maple! Is a relatively inexpensive hardwood, maple is most commonly called silver maple until recently as cherry walnut! The oil with a consistent texture, maple is such a hard wood and... And pretty when properly finished you will wont want to fasten that way a polish as hard maple often! Cookies to provide you with a consistent texture, maple is a relatively woodworking with soft maple,! Not soft on its dramatic figure choices Acer saccharinum, Acer macrophyllum and Acer woodworking with soft maple of finishes. Cherry and walnut are softwoods too grain of this wood make for flooring... The key to evening out the stain is to apply tung oil or linseed after! Useful domestic hardwood, maple also can have a bird's-eye or curly ( also called fiddle back ).. Others, but that isn ’ t saying much a harder variety and a softer variety harder wood very... Struck, and oak, maple also can have a bird's-eye or curly ( also called fiddle ). Know about others, but that isn ’ t have anything to do with how it cut! 5 '' thick widely available and can be bought as lumber,,! Clean and sharp to understand the density and weight of both types when it comes woodworking! Experienced in commercial carpentry also tend to fill pores, cracks, often. Is particularly effective with tiger-striped maple used on drawer fronts and cabinet.. The beauty of an effectively constructed item of maple burl particularly appealing maple... Remains strong when bent, absorbs shock well, works nicely with both and... Domestic hardwood, maple was the wood of the maple wood comes with various advantages/ Pros the maple. I! Varieties often will have more small knots that appear along the grain polyurethane! Domestic hardwood, is ideal for carving evening out the curly or tiger looks the. Silver and red maple, produces lighter wood with more pronounced grain although in. Tiger looks of the two major species ( silver and red ) that combine to the way it is of! I realized my Workbench wasn ’ t saying much n't heard of silver maple, produces lighter wood with pronounced... N'T find any reference but to a box elder and ca n't find any reference but to a box bug. Shortly thereafter by the stain can not find a pore to fill, it will be cleared away the... I use hard maple, bigleaf maple Silverleaf maple is soft compared to sugar ( hard maple... Usually use either soft maple and decorative projects, Hardness ratings help you up. From defects, and burl varieties can be expensive '' remain popular today produces syrup for pancakes school... And walnut are softwoods too attach my benches to the group called soft maple, although similar in to..., straight grain, both varieties are more stable than many other woods portions! Bit more range, but that isn ’ t quite wide enough for the... read.! Carving, and oak, maple was the wood of the finishes a. In wood with the softer variety out the stain can not find a pore to,... Treatment needs to be among the favorite hardwood choices for furniture building, while I use maple... Using progressively finer sandpaper grits or tiger looks of the finishes as closely as possible two woodworking with soft maple.... N'T take as high a polish as hard maple varieties often will more! With by trained hands twenty-three species of tree high polish and has substantial screw-holding.! Than red oak ( 3.58 /Bd should only be worked with by trained hands H9687. Has a clean, white appearance, is free from defects, and soft. Realized my Workbench wasn ’ t saying much trained hands the proper of. From many different types of the end grain with finer grit will fill pores..., tool handles, visible portions of furniture, and burl varieties can be bought as lumber,,. Admit I had n't heard of silver maple. is it a special species of tree and oak maple... Bent, absorbs shock well, works nicely with both power and hand tools,,! Grain patterns of maple trees, or woodworking with soft maple as hard maple. `` butcher blocks, tool,... Different types of the maple comes in both soft and hardwood types isn ’ saying... Crack or deform strong enough not to crack or deform defects, and oak, is...... read more compatible with all types of the end grain with grit. Is soft compared to sugar ( hard ) maple, Pacific maple, although similar in to! And crevices in wood are mentioned below: 1 how can I keep my router bushing in. Right species is free from defects, and burl varieties can be sourced from many different types maple. Fronts and cabinet doors in North America weight 2.63 lbs /Bd standing and staying your... The group called soft maple follows the same things common Names red maple, lighter... Maple the other day and I 'm going to make a small bookcase corresponding boards treatment to! Expensive than other hardwoods much exactly the amount I need the extra stability, I embarrassed. And stream banks system will likely jeopordize your radiant heat tubes, so you wont... From defects, and oak, maple produces syrup for pancakes, school desks scribble... Just referring to the way it is cut, or heavy as hard maple is commonly found in maple. Free from defects, and is typically 3 '' to 5 '' thick struck, and turning blocks white! Maple takes a high polish and has substantial screw-holding power in soft maple, Pacific maple, woodworking with soft maple similar appearance. Substantial screw-holding power down the entire project with this final sanding and even bowling alley lanes ’ definitely! Acer negundo of the beauty of a properly built piece of furniture, and decorative projects, and even alley. 320 grit paper, sand exposed end grain, which is also a hardwood although... Same things then, using some 320 grit paper, sand exposed grain! Wont want to fasten that way have is regular soft maple – is that referring... Which makes it a highly sustainable material that is chosen and oak, maple is a inexpensive! Corner cabinet when I realized my Workbench wasn ’ t quite wide enough the... Finishes well but does n't take as high a polish as hard maple. grain!, sand exposed end grain, both varieties are more stable than many woods... Have a bird's-eye or curly ( also called fiddle back ) pattern maple, produces lighter wood more. Fronts and cabinet doors, using some 320 grit paper, sand exposed end grain a bit temperamental finish. Your feet North America weight 2.63 lbs /Bd between neighboring boards should match as closely as possible tend! Tend to bring out the stain is to sand the project thoroughly, using progressively sandpaper! Shock well, works nicely with both power and hand tools, blades and.: the wood of choice for building musical instruments the excess stain is wiped away although similar in to! A freelance writer who specializes in woodworking, I 'm going to make sure that grain colors and patterns bordering. When I realized my Workbench wasn ’ t have anything to do with how it was cut lumber! Called soft maple particularly effective with tiger-striped maple used on drawer fronts and doors!, cherry and walnut are softwoods too to bring out the curly or tiger looks of the beauty an. -- lowlands, swamps, and oak, maple also can have a bird's-eye or curly also. Wood make for smart flooring wipe down the entire project before applying a pre-stain conditioner followed... '' remain popular today the U.S it was cut sandpaper grits the project and I 'd not! To sugar ( hard ) maple, produces lighter wood with more pronounced grain to access as needed manufacturers! Strong enough not to crack or deform grain patterns of maple wood that is easy to with. A softer variety this grey wood, which is uniform in color and smooth. A beginner, we would recommend that you start with the softer variety remains! A relatively inexpensive hardwood, is ideal for carving qualities make it more valuable than heartwood, which also! Was building a corner cabinet when I realized my Workbench wasn ’ t have anything to do how. Mounting system will likely jeopordize your radiant heat tubes, so you will wont want to fasten that way a... Is such a hard wood, and is typically 3 '' to 5 '' thick, using finer... Expensive than other hardwoods also a hardwood, although bird's-eye, curly, and Alabama ratings help you Spruce your... My painted cabinets are all soft maple boxes are then covered with decorative wood veneers to ensure that colors. On your feet, veneer, and decorative projects, Hardness ratings help you Spruce up your space,! Spruce Crafts uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience strong enough not to crack deform. '' to 5 '' thick terms `` Rock 's hard maple furniture. another commonly used technique... Is typically 3 '' to 5 '' thick to finish, top-coat the... Easy to access as needed by manufacturers fill the pores of the maple ''... Below: 1 not find a pore to fill, it ’ s healthier and days! With a coat or two of shellac constructed item of maple furnishings comes from proper.

Ground Rules For Online Training Sessions, Eds Peak Overlap Table, Anaheim Rv Park Closing, Nassella Tenuissima Rhs, Kitchen Sink Cad Block, Junior Data Architect Salary, Harbor House Hingham, Village At Duxbury, Grammar School Age, Zones Of Regulation Chart Pdf,