Wood Gloat #18: Who painted the timber purple...

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Blog entry by degoose posted 05-10-2012 06:33 AM 6038 reads 0 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 17: Woods new to me... Part 18 of Wood Gloat series Part 19: Timber for commissions. »

Purple heart…I still get people wanting to know how I get timber this colour….do I paint it..or is it a stain?

Those of you who have used purple heart know that it is naturally purple…but when you dress or sand it… it goes brown…

If as most of you know you leave it in the sun or UV light in the workshop… hey presto… back to purple…

This piece was partially covered to prevent the whole board from turning Purple.

Here are a few shot of the last of the big bits of purple heart I bought a few years ago…

I initially bought over 2 cubic metres [800 odd board feet] in 3.6 metre [12ft] lenghts 150 by 50 mm…. [2×6 inch].....this is the last three lengths cut to usable size… 700 mm [28 in…] and run through the thicknesser to remove the weathering..

As you can see the color has returned after a few hours in the sun..

If you are interested in buying any of this timber.. you will need to attend the Brisbane Timber and Working with Wood show… and be quick… It disappears quickly.. It will be available from the T & G Creations stand….see Trevor or Geoffry … in the outside area…

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

16 comments so far

View Gary Fixler's profile

Gary Fixler

1001 posts in 4438 days

#1 posted 05-10-2012 09:05 AM

This is exciting news! I’ve had it backwards. I always thought you had to avoid the sunlight, or coat it in a UV shield, because the UV would turn it from purple to brown. Next you’ll tell me you’re supposed to use the sharp end of the chisel on the wood!

-- Gary, Los Angeles, video game animator

View littlecope's profile


3119 posts in 4559 days

#2 posted 05-10-2012 09:22 AM

That’s a Great Stash Larry…
I don’t know if I’d leave it out in the yard like that though
it’s beginning to take on the color of the flowers…

-- Mike in Concord, NH---Unpleasant tasks are simply worthy challenges to improve skills.

View degoose's profile


7281 posts in 4411 days

#3 posted 05-10-2012 09:27 AM

You should have seen the whole lot when I first bought it… what you see there is 1/10 of that…
Next post is the New Guinea Rosewood I picked up today…just under 200 board feet.

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

View stefang's profile


17040 posts in 4391 days

#4 posted 05-10-2012 09:36 AM

Deep Purple?

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View ruddy's profile


550 posts in 3996 days

#5 posted 05-10-2012 10:16 AM

Larry….you are a skite.
That is beautiful timber

-- And my head I'd be a scratchin'

View ~Julie~'s profile


623 posts in 4091 days

#6 posted 05-10-2012 11:37 AM

I don’t know anything about working with purple heart.
How do you keep it that way in a project?

-- ~Julie~

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 4172 days

#7 posted 05-10-2012 12:09 PM

dang you make me darkgreen now

lookforward to see the batch of the rosewood


View David Craig's profile

David Craig

2137 posts in 4165 days

#8 posted 05-10-2012 12:09 PM

Beautiful wood Larry. What I really want to know is how you got the grass to look like there is a dark man wearing a ball cap laying across it. I suppose you are going to tell me that is done by sunlight as well ;)

As you can see, breathing sawdust has negative effects on the mind. Thank God every day for your dust collection system :)

-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

View Woodwrecker's profile


4240 posts in 4632 days

#9 posted 05-10-2012 03:17 PM

Oh, how that timber would look on my workbench being made in to something.
You always get the best wood Larry.

I can’t wait to see the next batch.

And thank you for the tip on restoring the color of purple heart.
I must admit that I had the same notion as Gary; that leaving it out in the sunlight took the color, not brought it back.
Thanks again Larry.

View BTimmons's profile


2303 posts in 3542 days

#10 posted 05-10-2012 03:54 PM

Yeah, I’m another one of those folks that had the UV and Purpleheart color backwards. Who knew…

-- Brian Timmons -

View Bertha's profile


13615 posts in 3750 days

#11 posted 05-10-2012 04:00 PM

Where on Earth does someone find 800 board feet of purpleheart!? :)

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View Grizzled_Buckeye's profile


12 posts in 3268 days

#12 posted 05-10-2012 07:13 PM


Love that purpleheart! The wife’s got me trying to make a table out of the stuff. A better name for it might be “splinterwood,” though. She’s gotten tired of digging out the splinters, every time I forget to wear my gloves…


-- This message is made of 100% recycled electrons.

View matt garcia's profile

matt garcia

1930 posts in 4729 days

#13 posted 05-10-2012 11:43 PM

I’m taking my brown purple heart out for tan this weekend!!!

-- Matt Garcia Wannabe Period Furniture Maker, Houston TX

View BigTiny's profile


1703 posts in 3945 days

#14 posted 05-11-2012 01:38 AM

Hi Larry.

Pardon me, but when I went to school (I think our math prof was Pythagoras), 150mm x 50mm translated to 2×6 inches, not 1×6 which would be 25×150mm.

Picky picky picky, eh? :)


-- The nicer the nice, the higher the price!

View degoose's profile


7281 posts in 4411 days

#15 posted 05-11-2012 02:59 AM

Paul ,., good pickup… have amended the post… BTW did he not have a teaching assistant, Hypotenuse ??

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

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