Sapele, Sapele Lumber, Mahogany Substitute

Sapele Mahogany wood doors manufactured by Allegheny Wood Works are available as Interior Doors or Exterior Front Entry Doors Sapele Mahogany doors are available in raised panel or flat panel mission style doors. It’s also prized for volume, balance and articulation, making it one of the best all around tonewoods there is. Honduran Mahogany yields a crisp fundamental sound, with a pleasing bloom of mid-range overtones. Tight cutaways always present some risk, especially if the wood has prominent cross-grain figure. Fiji mahogany looks like a legitimate and sustainable alternative to more expensive native timber from both Africa and South America.

The quartersawn Sapele has preference in flooring due to being more stable than flatsawn. Used extensively, guitar bodies, flooring, furniture, cabinetry, decorative moldings, paneling, doors and windows , and any application where genuine mahogany is used. In addition, due to the resistance to absorbing water, bamboo is less likely to crack and split like regular wood boards. You’ve probably seen it made into hollow doors where the large figure can be appreciated.

Effective Nov 15, 2003 Mahogany came under the international trade restrictions for items listed in CITES Appendix II. Appendix II includes species not necessarily threatened with extinction, but in which trade must be controlled in order to avoid utilization incompatible with their survival. A word of caution to contractors and carpenters, however: Be sure to take care while machining this wood.

If you are in the market for an exotic, imported wood to provide some unique class and special style for your home, then consider looking at the Brazilian Cherry or Sapele Mahogany. The tonal difference between a mahogany guitar and a rosewood guitar is exactly the same as the difference between two mahogany guitars or two rosewood guitars. The fact that many of the illustrations feature Huss and Dalton isn’t meant to be be an advertisement; H&D is simply where I’ve gained most of my experience with a few kinds of wood. Some of the photos are of sanded but unfinished work, which seldom shows the wood to the best advantage.

Think of it this way – a well made uke made by an experienced luthier from linden wood laminate is going to sound better than a uke made by me from solid koa. Description: Santos Mahogany is reddish brown changing to a deep red or somewhat purplish after milling. Northeast Timber is a family run business supplying all wood workers with hardwoods from across the world. African Mahogany: Flatsawn is desirable, looks a lot like Genuine Mahogany (Swetenia Macrophyla). He carefully cut and banded his sheets to acheive a sequence pattern for his kitchen cabinet doors.

Although Sapele is super beautiful, the bright flaring striped effect is a little too much for me. IMO, would look better with darker stain. Whether you buy Sapele lumber from J. Gibson McIlvain or another supplier, pay close attention to the provenance documentation to ensure that you are in fact getting Sapele as compared to another similar species.

Sapele does have good decay resistance, but not as good as the excellent resistance of genuine mahogany. Sapele seasons fairly rapidly with a marked tendency to warp, is very variable in drying properties and requires careful stacking. Sapele, African Mahogany and Central American mahogany look so similar that if I were shown samples of each I don’t think I could identify which is which with any consistency.

Virtually knot free, long lasting and takes to paint well, it can also stain up nicely and is reminiscent of Mahogany. It is a relatively easy wood to work but will quickly take the edge off tools and in planing and shaping, the surface is likely to tear due to the interlocked grain. Sapele is actually somewhat soft for a hardwood (although it is still harder than Mahogany), and it is therefore very gentle on tools. The Wireless Outdoor Keypad is an add-on allowing you to enjoy exterior access to your doors without a remote. Durability: The wood is reported to be susceptible to pinhole borer, and marine borer attack.

Pricing/Availability: Should be moderately priced for regular plainsawn or quartersawn lumber, though figured lumber and veneer can be extremely expensive, particularly pommele or quilted Sapele. I got free cutoffs in mahogany and clear sugar pine for free from the discard bin in front of a pattern shop in my old hometown. It works well with my Martin 6 string flat top as well as my Gibson big box jazz guitar.

Jeff Huss found a small supply of this Filipino mahogany at a bluegrass jam and has been searching for more ever since. Sapele is quite common as a veneer option for architectural millwork because of its dramatic light and dark ribbons when quartersawn. A rich-grained mahogany top paired with African sapele back and sides give our medium-size cutaway Grand Auditorium body plenty of tonal and visual character.

This African hardwood is highly sought after for its similarity to other types of Mahogany for guitar making, furniture making and now for flooring, decking and paneling applications. While no other wood works quite like South American Mahogany the African species are good alternatives. Nearly all budget and beginner level ukuleles are constructed from one of the following woods: linden, nato, sapele or mahogany. If this floppy African cardboard makes into a fine guitar-and it does- then any wood will.

Genuine mahogany carves, cuts and turns beautifully and it is a pleasure to finish, although in some applications it does need a little grain filling. But to answer your question, you are not the only one in the same boat of attempting to find some decent wood in the mahogany family. Use extra heat to bend the sides and you should be OK. This wood has given me no problem with cracking once made into instruments, but I suspect that on a full-size guitar it may present a hazard. In fact, if the tonal quality of the sapele guitar I had is typical, I might prefer it to Central American mahogany. The pores in the wood are so large and deep that filling them twice is a good idea.

The wood bends nicely, but go easy on the water as it is more absorbent than walnut or mahogany. This ceiling mounted opener for out-swing doors is available in either a ¾ or 1 horsepower option. Sapele is charicterised by a marked and regular stripe, particularly on sawn surfaces. Since sapele belongs to the same botanical family as true mahogany, its uses are very similar. Utile is our preferred wood for exterior doors and shutters due to its high rot resistance and excellent paint adhesion.

Honduras mahogany is from Honduras – and South America, Mexico, the rest of Central America – the tropics. Due to the flatsawing and the massive amounts of end grain, fancy sapele has almost no tap tone (tap tones are a farce, too. Remember… There was a reason that they imported droves of mahogany into the US way back when. Another good working wood from Africa but grows more slowly and is more sparsely distributed than Sapele. The most astonishing thing about this wood is the spicy smell it releases when it is machined. In general this wood works quite easily in all operations, but if the grain is interlocked it may be difficult to surface without tearing out.

This makes it a preferred wood for larger guitars, because it helps reduce dominating overtones in the lower frequencies. Spanish cedar (Cedrela odorata): This species is a member of the mahogany family and is most definitely neither a softwood nor a cedar. We’ve used Sapele for our custom doors since we can’t get the quality of mahogany from the good old days. Sapele is more difficult to work with due to the interlocking grain, your machinery will tell you. Within 2-3 days, you can have your dream wood countertop installed with multiple finishes-and be the envy of your neighbors!

I’ve only made one guitar from this wood, and I only include it because it was such an ordeal that I thought you should be warned. Although attractive, the ribbon-like texture of quartersawn Sapele lacks the consistency in coloration that the flat-sawn wood boasts. I haven’t made a birch instrument in a long time, but I have a soft spot for the wood. A class one hardwood, Sapele can be used as an alternative to Brazilian mahogany, offering a much cheaper option. Sapele Mahogany has a deep, rich, dark, natural color that does not require stain.

First of all (and speaking from a steel string guitar perspective), let’s discard the notion that some species of wood make good instruments and that others don’t. When Sapele is shipped out of Africa, it has been dried to the European standard moisture content of 12-14%. Flatsawn sapele often displays a wild quilted figure, and this stuff is altogether not for the timid. Our sapele butcher block countertops are made from 1” strips glued together running the full length of the top. Walnut is excellent for libraries, offices, interior doors and kitchen cabinets.

In my experience, the majority of suppliers of genuine mahogany call it Honduras mahogany, as that is the traditional name for many of the past decades, along with true mahogany and genuine mahogany. A substantial board of character / rustic grade sapele that has been planed on all four sides.. Sapele is a beautiful red mahogany type timber that finishes very well. Sapele is most often used as a window and door material because it is so stable and almost completely rot and weather resistant. Sapele and African Mahogany have gained popularity for usage in exterior mouldings, including siding and soffits. I am having a hard time with determining some old african mahogany I found up in my attic.

Our Homeowner DIY Sapele Mahogany top is intended for people who don’t mind doing some finish sanding, staining (optional) and sealing of their wood countertop to have what others would pay thousands of dollars for. It has a relatively high velocity of sound, and the highest strength to weight ratio than any other wood. The wood also can create some serious splinters and check on the edges if the grain is not correct on the boards. As with other Mahogany family woods, the color will darken slightly with age and UV light exposure.