Spalted Plywood

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Blog entry by Kacy posted 01-10-2010 04:27 AM 4574 reads 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

So, I’m knocking around at the local big box, looking through a stack of birch plywood for a nice piece to make a bench hook and a shooting board (because, of course, you can’t use just any old hunk of wood for just critical bench accessories), when I flip a 2×4 panel over and see this:

Now, I have to admit that I have never seen a piece of spalted wood in the flesh, but this sure looks like some of the pictures I have seen. I also have never heard of anything other than spalted maple, but I suppose there is no reason why fungus can’t do the same job in other species.

But, in a piece of birch ply? Has anyone else ever run across this kind of thing?

Needless to say, they got double my money on the plywood today, as I had to buy the spalted piece and a regular piece—I just couldn’t see myself using it for the bench hook.

I also spent a good half hour going through all the other birch ply that they had, but no luck.

-- Kacy, Louisiana

8 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


118161 posts in 4586 days

#1 posted 01-10-2010 04:33 AM

View MOJOE's profile


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#2 posted 01-10-2010 05:16 AM

Nice work…I just finished a crib, and had the same experience at my local Home Depot. Found 2 pieces of spalted birch ply. Used them as panels to fill in the head board. Oddly enough, I have also found some curly maple at the same HD.

-- Measuring twice and cutting once only works if you read the tape correctly!

View WhittleMeThis's profile


125 posts in 4381 days

#3 posted 01-10-2010 05:43 AM

nice find

View Ecocandle's profile


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#4 posted 01-10-2010 07:30 AM

That is very cool. Thanks for sharing it with us. Good picture too.

-- Brian Meeks,

View lumberdog's profile


248 posts in 4276 days

#5 posted 01-10-2010 11:19 AM

I did a lot of cabinetry when i worked for the local School system, and all of it was made from birch ply. i run into a few 4’X8’sheets of spalted and curly. so there are some cabinet and class room furniture with some very fancy grain patterns in them.

-- Measure twice, cut once, then force it to fit.

View hunter71's profile


3544 posts in 4195 days

#6 posted 01-10-2010 01:44 PM

One other thing you may have missed. At least at OUR Lowe’s lumber Dept anyway. Up in the corner attached to the USP code is a sticker “MADE IN CHINA” Every piece!

-- A childs smile is payment enough.

View jussdandy's profile


157 posts in 4216 days

#7 posted 01-10-2010 05:40 PM

hey thanks for sharing, Ive sold a lot of sheets of china plywood and have seen a lot of this but I DID not know this was spalding, lol, I will look at the next one I see a lot closer, when a customer asked me what it was, I told what I thought to be the truth which was I don’t know, something to do with the china plywood.

-- Randy I have the right to remain silent, just not the ability ; )

View Kacy's profile


101 posts in 4093 days

#8 posted 01-10-2010 09:04 PM

Thanks for all the comments—I guess it is not as unusual as I thought.

Hunter71/jussdanday—your suspicions were correct, it is from China!

-- Kacy, Louisiana

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