Domestic Hardwood Flooring Wood Species like Red Oak , White Oak , Maple and more have always been used for Hardwood Flooring in homes across the United States. After the French established a colony in Saint Domingue (now Haiti ), some mahogany from that island probably found its way to France, where joiners in the port cities of Saint-Malo, Nantes, La Rochelle and Bordeaux used the wood to a limited extent from about 1700. Great wood for bridges, fretboards, binding and faceplates…lower damping than many other ebonies, has a great deal of visual appeal, and lower mass while retaining close to the same surface hardness. When you own solid cherry furniture, you will experience the metamorphosis” of this wood by watching its beautiful glowing patina deepen and become more beautiful with age.
Pau Ferro’s contrasting bands of brown, gold, yellow and black give the wood a beautiful and warm appearance. Since sets have curly figured grain, care must be taken when working (the same as any wood with figure). We compare it to the sound of Mahogany but with less on the top end and slightly less on the lows. It really competes neck to neck with Brazilian rosewood and African Blackwood… and, although blond, the wood looks simply terrific. Irion says that customers tend to prefer the mahogany coming out of Peru because of its density and darkness, but most of the harvesting operations in that country have been shut down.
I have built some cabinet doors to go in a Knotty Alder wine cellar, but have concerns about building major furniture pieces with this wood. The wood is native to South America and the West Indies, however, it is imported mostly from Guiana. Someone recently suggested that he had found Iroko wood as a good substitute for teak, and much cheaper. An African relative of rosewood, it’s a great sounding wood that shares many of rosewood’s tonal properties, with a slightly fuller midrange and a top end that’s not quite as bright as maple.
SOUTHERN MAHOGANY, scientific name Eucalyptus botryoides is a fourth species of Australian Eucalyptus with a mahogany” trade name (the others being red”, white”, and swamp” mahogany.) It is native to south eastern Australia, from New South Wales to Victoria. With growing concern for our environment and the deforestation of the rain forests around the world, it is significant to inform our customers that none of the wood used in the crafting of our furniture stems from the Indonesian rain forest. Slightly harder and heavier than Indian Rosewood, it is a good back and side wood.
Hispaniola (also called Spanish or Santo Domingo) mahogany was the wood of choice for high quality work. White Oak (Quercus alba) is a wood found on the North American continent with a straight grain and a moderate to coarse texture. Highly dense and reflective, wood yielding a loud, projective, and sustained tone. In the hardwoods section above, there are pictures of both the edge grain and the face grain for each type of wood. Something of a cross between ebony and rosewood tone-wise, pau ferro is a fairly hard, dense, tight-grained wood. Workability of Hawaiian Koa is similar to Genuine Mahogany (Swietenia macrophylla).
Spalted Tamarind (Tamarindus indica) is a creamy white wood with spectacular background colors of rose, yellow and black spalting, which gives the appearance of an unpredictable landscape. Many sets have a deeply veined spider-web grain similar to premium sets of Brazilian Rosewood (without being subjected to all of Brazilian Rosewood’s shortcomings). Because of these qualities it is a very good alternative wood for necks, especially for maple-instruments, whose color it closely matches. Listed below are the ideal characteristics (hopefully) found in the wood: chances are most non-mahoganies will lack at least one (or more) of these characteristics.