Flame maple known as flamed maple, curly maple, ripple maple, fiddleback or tiger stripe, is a feature of maple in which the growth of the wood fibers is distorted in an undulating chatoyant pattern, producing wavy lines known as "flames". This effect is mistakenly said to be part of the grain of the wood. Prized for its beautiful appearance, it is used in the manufacturing of musical instruments, such as violins and bassoons, fine furniture. Another well-known use of the material is its use in guitars. During the westward expansion of early settlers and explorers into the lands west of the Appalachian Mountains, curly maple was used for making the stocks used on Kentucky rifles; as mentioned, the structure of flame maple consists of distorted patterns found in the wood of specific maple trees. Although this pattern makes its appearance strikingly different from regular maple, they behave in a similar way; when woodworking, one must consider the type of wood they are working with. Hard woods like oak require heavy-duty equipment to shape, while softwoods such as Pine can be cut and shaved with much less force and lighter tools.
Maple woods fall under the hardwood category, though they are lighter and easier to work than stronger hardwoods like oak and mahogany. As with most other woods, flame maple does have the potential to splinter. To counter this, carpenters working with flame maple must use sharper, quicker tools over their heavier counterparts. Saw blades for example prove more effective against the flame maple when given a fine row of teeth instead of coarser, large teeth one may find on a blade used for oak. Flame maple, is known for being stiff due to its tight grain pattern and solid structure, so applying too much stress to one side of the maple stock can result in fragmentation, catastrophic failure. To prevent this, carpenters use pre-shaped jigs to hold the maple in place. Popularization Flame maple is popular in guitars, has been for decades; the process includes cutting the maple to shape, forming it if necessary through mold-warping and applying a clear coat or lacquer to protect the finish, ensure the wood holds its shape.
Flame maple is popular, due to its inclusion on the Gibson Les Paul the one used by Slash, the iconic lead guitarist of Guns N Roses. As his fame increased so did the fame and value of this guitar style, prompting many guitar companies to provide similar flame-maple finishes thereafter. Controversy Among guitar communities, one debate always present is that of tonality; this is the debate on how much. While this is a massive debate in itself, flame maple is a hardwood, regarded to produce a bright, shimmering sound, due to its rigidity and reflection against sound waves; this effect is noticeable in acoustic flame-maple guitars, but arguably insignificant in electric guitars. Additionally, the effects of clear-coating or applying nitro to a flame maple finish are up for debate. According to the Beauty Of The Burst by Yasuhiko Watanabe, the figures seen on the sunburst Les Paul are categorized into 8 types: 6 types of flame maple, 2 other types. Note that the last two types are not considered as the flame maple variations, along with the quilt maple.
6 types of flame maple wood Other types of figure maple wood Quilt maple Birdseye maple Media related to Flamed maple wood at Wikimedia Commons Media related to Flamed maple top guitars at Wikimedia Commons
A burl or bur or burr is a tree growth in which the grain has grown in a deformed manner. It is found in the form of a rounded outgrowth on a tree trunk or branch, filled with small knots from dormant buds. A burl results from a tree undergoing some form of stress, it may be caused by an virus or fungus. Most burls grow beneath the ground, attached to the roots as a type of malignancy, not discovered until the tree dies or falls over; such burls sometimes appear as groups of bulbous protrusions connected by a system of rope-like roots. All burl wood is covered by bark if it is underground. Insect infestation and certain types of mold infestation are the most common causes of this condition. In some tree species, burls can grow to great size; the largest, at 26 ft, can encircle the entire trunk. The world's second-largest burls can be found in British Columbia. One of the largest burls known was found around 1984 in the small town of New South Wales, it stands 6.4 ft tall, with an odd shape resembling a trombone.
In January 2009, this burl was controversially removed from its original location, relocated to a public school in the central New South Wales city of Dubbo. Burls yield a peculiar and figured wood, prized for its beauty and rarity, it is sought after by furniture makers and wood sculptors. There are a number of well-known types of burls; the famous birdseye maple of the sugar maple superficially resembles the wood of a burl but is something else entirely. Burl wood is hard to work with hand tools or on a lathe because its grain is twisted and interlocked, causing it to chip and shatter unpredictably; this "wild grain" makes burl wood dense and resistant to splitting, which made it valued for bowls, mauls and "beetles" or "beadles" for hammering chisels and driving wooden pegs. Burls are harvested with saws or axes for smaller specimens and timber felling chainsaws and tractors for massive ones; because of the value of burls, ancient redwoods in National Parks in Western United States have been poached by thieves for their burls, including at Redwood National and State Parks.
Poachers cut off the burls from the sides of the trunks using chainsaws, which exposes the tree to infection and disease, or fell the entire tree to steal burls higher up. Because of risk of poaching, Jeff Denny, the state park’s redwood coast sector supervisor, encourages those buying burl to inquire where it came from and to ensure it was obtained legally. Legal acquisition methods for burl include trees from private land cleared for new development and from lumber companies with salvage permits. Amboyna burl is a expensive type of burl, much more than bigleaf maple burl, for example, it comes from padauk trees of Southeast Asia. Padauk trees are quite common but burl wood is rare; the amboyna is a deep red, although the more rare moudui burl is the same species but the color is from golden yellow to yellow-orange. The sapwood is creamy white with brown streaks; the common use for amboyna is interiors for luxury vehicles, cabinets and furniture. Canker Forest pathology Gall Corbett, Stephen; the Illustrated Professional Woodworker.
London: Anness Publishing. ISBN 978-0-681-22891-7. Powers, Steven S.. North American Burl Treen: Colonial & Native American. Brooklyn: S. Scott Powers Antiques. ISBN 978-0-9760635-0-6. James, Susanne. "Lignotubers and Burls: Their Structure and Ecological Significance in Mediterranean Ecosystems". Botanical Review. 50: 225–66. Doi:10.1007/BF02862633. JSTOR 4354037. Rankin, William Howard. "Mistletoe Burl and Witches'-Broom". Manual of Tree Diseases. Pp. 214–5. OCLC 1652501. White PR. "A Tree Tumor of Unknown Origin". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 44: 339–44. Bibcode:1958PNAS...44..339W. Doi:10.1073/pnas.44.4.339. JSTOR 89803. PMC 335423. PMID 16590202. Zalasky, Harry. "Low-temperature-induced cankers and burls in test conifers and hardwoods". Canadian Journal of Botany. 53: 2526–35. Doi:10.1139/b75-277. Funk, A.. "Therrya canker of spruce in British Columbia". Canadian Journal of Plant Pathology. 4: 357–61. Doi:10.1080/07060668209501277. White PR, Millington WF. "The distribution and possible importance of a woody tumor on trees of the white spruce, Picea glauca".
Cancer Research. 14: 128–34. PMID 13126948. Video footage of tree burrs
Wood grain is the longitudinal arrangement of wood fibers or the pattern resulting from this. R. Bruce Hoadley wrote that grain is a "confusingly versatile term" with numerous different uses, including the direction of the wood cells, surface appearance or figure, growth-ring placement, plane of the cut, rate of growth, relative cell size; the most important physical aspect of wood grain in woodworking is the grain direction or slope. The two basic categories of grain cross grain. Straight grain runs parallel to the longitudinal axis of the piece. Cross grain deviates from the longitudinal axis in spiral grain or diagonal grain; the amount of deviation is called the slope of the grain. In describing the application of a woodworking technique to a given piece of wood, the direction of the technique may be: with the grain against the grain across the grain end grain Grain alignment must be considered when joining pieces of wood, or designing wooden structures. For example, a stressed span is less to fail if tension is applied along the grain, rather than across the grain.
Grain direction will affect the type of warping seen in the finished item. In describing the alignment of the wood in the tree a distinction may be made. Basic grain descriptions and types include: straight - grain which runs in a single direction, parallel to the axis of the tree spiral - grain which spirals around the axis of the tree interlocked - grain which spirals around the axis of the tree, but reverses its direction for periods of years resulting in alternating directions of the spiral grain. In its simplest aesthetic meaning, wood grain is the alternating regions of darker and lighter wood resulting from the differing growth parameters occurring in different seasons on a cut or split piece of wood. Causes including fungus, stress, special grain alignments, others produce figure in wood, their rarity promotes the value of both the raw material, the finished work it becomes a part of. These include: bird's eye quilted fiddleback curlyThe way a given piece of wood has been sawn affects both its appearance and physical properties: flat-grain: flat-sawn, slab-sawn, plain sawn, bastard-sawn, or sawn "through and through".
Edge grain: quarter-sawn or rift-sawn or straight-grained, end grain: the grain of wood seen when it is cut across the growth rings. Speaking, grain is not always the same as the figure of wood. There is irregular grain in burr wood or burl wood, but this is result of many knots. Grain painting Grain filler Knee Wood finishing
Bird's eye figure
Bird's eye is a type of figure that occurs within several kinds of wood, most notably in hard maple. It has a distinctive pattern that resembles tiny, swirling eyes disrupting the smooth lines of grain, it is somewhat reminiscent of a burl, but it is quite different: the small knots that make the burl are missing. It is not known. Research into the cultivation of bird's eye maple has so far discounted the theories that it is caused by pecking birds deforming the wood grain or that an infecting fungus makes it twist. However, no one has demonstrated a complete understanding of any combination of climate, tree variety, viruses or genetic mutation that may produce the effect. Bird's eye maple is most found in Acer saccharum, but millers find bird's eye figure in red maple, white ash, Cuban mahogany, American beech, black walnut, yellow birch. Trees that grow in the Great Lakes region of Canada and the United States yield the greatest supply, along with some varieties in the Rocky Mountains, it is not uncommon in Huon Pine.
Although there are a few clues in a tree's bark that indicate the lumber might have bird's eye figure, it is necessary to fell the tree and cut it apart to know for sure. In most characteristics, wood with bird's eye figure is no different from the rest of the wood from the same tree. Depending on the frequency of the birdseye swirls, each ⅛" to ⅜" wide, the wood may be valuable. While woodworkers prize the timber for its use in veneers, it turns well on a lathe, allowing it to be shaped into decorative canes, chair legs, handles. Bird's eye maple may be expensive, up to several times the cost of ordinary hardwood, it is used in refined specialty products, such as in automobile trim, both in solid form and veneer and bowls for jewelry, thin veneer, canes, furniture inlays, guitars, bowed instruments and pool cues are popular uses. Items made with this wood tend to be more expensive not only because the wood is more costly but because it is harder to work; when working with bird's eye wood, it is advisable to take care in what tools are used, so as to prevent grain tearout.
The more "eyes" there are in lumber, the weaker the wood tends to be. Media related to Bird's eye maple wood at Wikimedia Commons
Rosewood refers to any of a number of richly hued timbers brownish with darker veining, but found in many different hues. All genuine rosewoods belong to the genus Dalbergia; the pre-eminent rosewood appreciated in the Western world is the wood of Dalbergia nigra. It is best known as "Brazilian rosewood", but as "Bahia rosewood"; this wood has a sweet smell, which persists for many years, explaining the name rosewood. Another classic rosewood comes from Dalbergia latifolia known as Indian sonokeling, it is native to India and is grown in plantations elsewhere in Pakistan. Madagascar rosewood, known as bois de rose, is prized for its red color, it is overexploited in the wild, despite a 2010 moratorium on trade and illegal logging, which continues on a large scale. Throughout southeast Asia, Dalbergia oliveri is harvested for use in woodworking, it has a fragrant and dense grain near the core, but the outer sapwood is soft and porous. Dalbergia cultrata, variegated burgundy to light brown in color, is a blackwood timber sold as Burmese rosewood.
Products built with rosewood-based engineered woods are sold as Malaysian rosewood or as D. oliveri. Some rosewood comes from Dalbergia retusa known as the Nicaraguan rosewood or as cocobolo. Several species are known as Guatemalan rosewood or Panama rosewood: D. tucerencis, D. tucarensis, D. cubiquitzensis. Honduran rosewood:D. stevensonii is used for marimba keys, guitar parts and other musical and ornamental applications. Not all species in the large genus Dalbergia yield rosewoods; the woods of some other species in the genus Dalbergia are notable—even famous—woods in their own right: African blackwood, cocobolo and Brazilian tulipwood. The timber trade will sell many timbers under the name rosewood due to some similarities. A fair number of these timbers come from other legume genera. Another that may be found in market from Southeast Asia is Pterocarpus indicus, sold as New Guinea rosewood. Dalbergia sissoo is timber from rosewood species from India and Bangladesh known as sheesham or North-Indian rosewood.
It is dense and has mild rot resistance, but it is porous and its exterior is soft and susceptible to wood-boring insects. It is used for making cabinets and flooring, for carving, it is exported as quality veneers. Due to its after-work quality when sealed and dyed, it is sold as genuine rosewood or as teak, it has no discernible qualities of a genuine rosewood. It has lower quality and price than teak or Dalbergia latifolia. Although its wood bears no resemblance whatsoever to the true rosewoods, the Australian rose mahogany and Australian blackwood, are sold as rosewood. Australian rose mahogany due to the strong smell of roses from freshly cut bark is more mistakenly called as a "rosewood". All rosewoods are strong and heavy, taking an excellent polish, being suitable for guitars, recorders, handles and luxury flooring, etc. Rosewood oil, used in perfume, is extracted from the wood of Aniba rosaeodora, not related to the rosewoods used for lumber; the dust created from sanding rosewood is considered a sensitizing irritant and can trigger asthma and other respiratory ailments.
The more people are exposed to rosewood dust, the more sensitive they can become to exposure. In general, world stocks are poor through overexploitation; some species become canopy trees, large pieces can be found in the trade. Rosewood is now protected worldwide. At a summit of the international wildlife trade in South Africa, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora moved to protect the world’s most trafficked wild product by placing all 300 species of the rosewood tree under trade restrictions. Presence of hints of coarse grains with the shiny and silky smooth texture, compared to the glossy finish of artificial polishes Even texture with an orange/yellow-red to deep purple with black bars color range: Even if artificial dyes can reproduce the color, if with an uneven texture it can be confirmed the product is not made of rosewood. Fake rosewoods products would have light colors with white color in some space. If directly bought from workshop, the sawdust would have a flowery aroma.
If not, the product is compromised. Certain showpieces might have an unusual aroma, this is the effect of fragrant aerosol, not the quality. A drop of water mixed with sawdust will make the dust submerged and the droplet will have a purplish precipitation. A gentle knock on the wood will produce a crisp sound without noise. From Dalbergia species Amazone Rosewood, Para Rosewood Bahia Rosewood, Pau Rosa, Bois de rose, Black Rosewood, Mexican or Panama and Central American Rosewood Brazilian Rosewood Bahia or Rio Rosewood, White Rosewood, german Rio-Palisander Brown’s Indian rosewood Burmese Rosewood Chingchan as Asian or Laos Rosewood, Chinese Rosewood, Fragrant Rosewood, Huanghuali as Bangkok Rosewood Closeflower Rosewood, Cam
Spalting is any form of wood coloration caused by fungi. Although found in dead trees, spalting can occur in living trees under stress. Although spalting can cause weight loss and strength loss in the wood, the unique coloration and patterns of spalted wood are sought by woodworkers. Spalting is divided into three main types: white rot and zone lines. Spalted wood may exhibit all of these types in varying degrees. Both hardwoods and softwoods can spalt, but zone lines and white rot are more found on hardwoods due to enzymatic differences in white rotting fungi. Brown rots are more common to conifers, although one brown rot, Fistulina hepatica, is known to cause spalting. Pigmentation is caused. Bluestain is a form of pigmentation, however bluestain pigments are bound within the hyphae cell walls. A visible color change can be seen. Pigmenting fungi classified as spalting fungi do decay wood, they do so at a slower rate than white rotting fungi; the most common groups of pigmentation fungi are the ascomycetes.
Mold fungi, such as Trichoderma spp. are not considered to be spalting fungi, as their hyphae do not colonize the wood internally and they do not produce the enzymes necessary to digest the wood cell wall components. The mottled white pockets and bleaching effect seen in spalted wood is due to white rot fungi. Found on hardwoods, these fungi "bleach" by consuming lignin, the pigmented area of a wood cell wall; some white rotting can be caused by an effect similar to pigmentation, in which the white hyphae of a fungus, such as Trametes versicolor Pil. is so concentrated in an area that a visual effect is created. Both strength and weight loss occur with white rot decay, causing the "punky" area referred to by woodworkers. Brown rots, the "unpleasing" type of spalting, do not degrade lignin, thus creating a crumbly, cracked surface which cannot be stabilized. Both types of rot, if uncontrolled, will render wood useless. Dark dotting, winding lines and thin streaks of red and black are known as zone lines.
This type of spalting does not occur due to any specific type of fungus, but is instead an interaction zone in which different fungi have erected barriers to protect their resources. They can be caused by a single fungus delineating itself; the lines are clumps of hard, dark mycelium, referred to as pseudosclerotial plate formation. Zone lines themselves do not damage the wood. However, the fungi responsible for creating them do. Conditions required for spalting are the same as the conditions required for fungal growth: fixed nitrogen, water, warm temperatures and oxygen. Water: Wood must be saturated to a 20% moisture content or higher for fungal colonization to occur. Wood placed underwater lacks sufficient oxygen, colonization cannot occur. Temperature: The majority of fungi prefer warm temperatures between 10 and 40 °C, with rapid growth occurring between 20 and 32 °C. Oxygen: Fungi do not require much oxygen, but conditions such as waterlogging will inhibit growth. Time: Different fungi require different amounts of time to colonize wood.
Research conducted on some common spalting fungi found that Trametes versicolor, when paired with Bjerkandera adusta, took eight weeks to spalt 1.5 inch cubes of Acer saccharum. Colonization continued to progress after this time period, but the structural integrity of the wood was compromised; the same study found that Polyporus brumalis, when paired with Trametes versicolor, required 10 weeks to spalt the same size cubes. The Ohio Department of Natural Resources found; some common trees in this category include maple and beech. However, recent research suggests that sugar maple and aspen are preferred by both white rot and pigment fungi. One of the trickier aspects to spalting is. Fungi progress in waves of primary and secondary colonizers, where primary colonizers capture and control resources, change the pH of the wood and its structure, must defend against secondary colonizers that have the ability to colonize the substrate. Ceratocystis spp. contains the most common blue stain fungi. Trametes versicolor, is found all over the world and is a quick and efficient white rot of hardwoods.
Xylaria polymorpha Grev. has been known to bleach wood, but is unique in that it is one of the few fungi that will erect zone lines without any antagonism from other fungi. Initial lab work was conducted on spalting in the 1980s at Brigham Young University. A method for improving machinability in spalted wood using methyl methacrylate was developed in 1982, several white rot fungi responsible for zone line formation were identified in 1987. Current research at Michigan Technological University has identified specific time periods at which certain spalting fungi will interact, how long it takes for said fungi to render the wood useless. Researchers from this university developed a test for evaluating the machinability of spalted wood using a universal test machine