LMI wood

Want a reference book to ID wood- know a good one?

Ask your wood and other materials questions here. Please DO NOT post pictures and ask us to identify your wood, we have found that accurate ID is nearly impossible, and such discussions will be deleted. Thanks.

Want a reference book to ID wood- know a good one?

Postby Len McIntosh » Mon Mar 26, 2012 7:47 am

My title says it all - it seems there are more and more species of woods and telling one from the other is getting more difficult.
There are several on amazon but don't cover "all" woods
Does anyone have what they consider the "bible" of wood identification?
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Re: Want a reference book to ID wood- know a good one?

Postby Charlie Schultz » Mon Mar 26, 2012 10:23 am

Hi Len,
A couple that I've seen recommended before are "The Woodbook: The Complete Plates" by Romeyn Hough and "Identifying Wood" by R. Bruce Hoadley.
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Re: Want a reference book to ID wood- know a good one?

Postby Matt Diggins » Sun Apr 08, 2012 12:53 am

Hi,
I'm sure you have seen it on amazon, but I would recommend "Wood: Identification and Use" by Terry Porter. Great book, and it has more info than just identification. Hope this helps :D
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Re: Want a reference book to ID wood- know a good one?

Postby Francis Beaulieu » Mon Apr 09, 2012 6:31 pm

"The Woodbook" is a beautiful, fascinating book. This is a "reprint" from an old publication, which included real samples of the woods, instead of pictures. The modern publication is a photographic reproduction of that. The nice thing about it is that it shows the wood on the three different planes (flatsawn, quartersawn and endgrain). It only covers North American woods though, but it covers all the species, and not only the ones that are commercially available. This is a plus over some of the other books which only cover the commercial woods, but it can also be a disappointment if you fall in love with one of those beautiful woods, and then realize that you can't find it anywhere...
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Re: Want a reference book to ID wood- know a good one?

Postby Mark Day » Tue Apr 10, 2012 1:47 pm

I just added "The Woodbook" to my Amazon shopping cart.
I wonder if bushes are also covered in that book? There is some bush that is native to SE Michigan that I ran across while clearing an area to fell an ash tree. The first thing I noticed about this bush was the citrus-like smell of the freshly cut wood. I saved a couple sections of "trunk", about 2" in diameter. Much later I sawed it up and made a couple tuning pegs out of it. The sapwood, which is quite wide, is almost pure white, and the heartwood is a light brown. The wood is hard and lightweight, and once seasoned, seems pretty stable. I may try it for a lute bridge. I just wish I could identify it short of taking a sample to Michigan State University.
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Re: Want a reference book to ID wood- know a good one?

Postby Michael Lewis » Fri Apr 13, 2012 12:59 am

One fairly large problem is the variation within a species. it can be pretty difficult sometimes to identify some wood without leaves or bark, and sometimes wood dealers use "common" names which can be misleading. Experience helps a lot.
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Re: Want a reference book to ID wood- know a good one?

Postby Mark Day » Fri Apr 13, 2012 12:49 pm

If I ever do get a chance to get to a university extension service I'll bring leaf, wood, and anything else I can find samples to try to get the latin name for it. I would really just like to know so I can tell people what it is rather than, "tuning pegs and bridge made of unknown bush from my mom's backyard!"
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Re: Want a reference book to ID wood- know a good one?

Postby Roland Vinyard » Wed Jul 04, 2012 11:15 am

Not a book, but there are lots of pictures and information on this surprisingly comprehensive website: www.tonewooddatasource.weebly.com
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Re: Want a reference book to ID wood- know a good one?

Postby Andy Barnhart » Thu Jul 12, 2012 1:28 pm

The gold standard on the web for me has always been Hobbit House:

http://www.hobbithouseinc.com/personal/woodpics/

but the crazy thing is that it is so complete that it includes some atypical examples for a lot of wood and after scrolling through it for a few hours you start realizing that almost any wood sometimes looks like just about any other wood. :)

Image
-Andy
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Re: Want a reference book to ID wood- know a good one?

Postby Jason Rodgers » Thu Jul 12, 2012 6:59 pm

Charlie Schultz wrote:Hi Len,
A couple that I've seen recommended before are "The Woodbook: The Complete Plates" by Romeyn Hough and "Identifying Wood" by R. Bruce Hoadley.


Got Hough book a couple weeks ago and it's beautiful! Only wish the descriptions were a little more lengthy, maybe including basic stats like specific gravity.
-Ruining perfectly good wood, one day at a time.
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