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View BenI's profile

Help identifying wood

by BenI
posted 06-14-2014 12:22 PM


31 replies so far

View ChefHDAN's profile

ChefHDAN

1782 posts in 3768 days


#1 posted 06-14-2014 12:33 PM

Red cedar

-- I've decided 1 mistake is really 2 opportunities to learn.. learn how to fix it... and learn how to not repeat it

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bondogaposis

5897 posts in 3270 days


#2 posted 06-14-2014 01:01 PM

Western red cedar.

-- Bondo Gaposis

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Marcus

1165 posts in 2939 days


#3 posted 06-14-2014 01:07 PM

Yup, western red cedar…very nice looking lumber for a fence though.

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PaulDoug

2396 posts in 2623 days


#4 posted 06-14-2014 02:29 PM

From the color, looks like black walnut, but I can’t imagine anyone building a fence out of black walnut. How soft does the wood seem to be? Maybe the color I see is just from the exposure of the picture. Also with that straight of grain, I think the cedar answers are probably correct.

-- “We all die. The goal isn't to live forever; the goal is to create something that will.” - Chuck Palahniuk

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Yonak

986 posts in 2440 days


#5 posted 06-14-2014 02:36 PM

End views are always helpful but, from what I see, I concur with the others.

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BenI

333 posts in 3097 days


#6 posted 06-14-2014 03:04 PM

Paul- that’s what I thought when I first planned to new exposed wood but like you, be a bad idea to make anything outdoors out of walnut. The grain and general color definitely look like it though.

The general consensus seems to go towards red cedar.

-- Ben from IL

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firefighterontheside

21280 posts in 2775 days


#7 posted 06-14-2014 03:16 PM

What does it smell like?

-- Bill M. "People change, walnut doesn't" by Gene.

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BenI

333 posts in 3097 days


#8 posted 06-14-2014 03:27 PM

I haven’t noticed any smell to it

-- Ben from IL

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firefighterontheside

21280 posts in 2775 days


#9 posted 06-14-2014 03:34 PM

Gotta be WRC. I have seen grain like that in cedar.

-- Bill M. "People change, walnut doesn't" by Gene.

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11861 posts in 4607 days


#10 posted 06-14-2014 04:01 PM

VGWRC, no doubts…..If no knots, it would be CVGWRC.

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View DocSavage45's profile

DocSavage45

9023 posts in 3761 days


#11 posted 06-14-2014 04:04 PM

Cedar is lighter in density than walnut. Were the boards rough milled or finished. If rough that was how cedar was used. commercial fence boards are generally not as thick, would be rough milled and generally about 6 ft.

Natural walnut has similar hues and patterns to what your pictures show. Can you buy a board of each species to compare?

Nice find. :)

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

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BenI

333 posts in 3097 days


#12 posted 06-14-2014 04:09 PM

dusty56 what does that VG and CVG stand for? I know the rest of it stands for western red cedar.

doc it’s part of a fence that is been on one part of our patio for as long as I can remember but now the posts are starting to fail. I’m pretty sure they’ve been finished with something because they are a pretty dark brown/blackish color til I planned them down. They are under 1” thick, I want to say about 5/8” or so. The pieces are all about 6-7” wide and either 4 or 6 ft. long depends on which part of the fence they are from.

-- Ben from IL

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firefighterontheside

21280 posts in 2775 days


#13 posted 06-14-2014 04:19 PM

Vertical grain?
Clear vertical grain?

-- Bill M. "People change, walnut doesn't" by Gene.

View DocSavage45's profile

DocSavage45

9023 posts in 3761 days


#14 posted 06-14-2014 04:19 PM

5/8ths is standard in commercial fence boards. Check out your local box store if available. Walnut would be too expensive to build a fence. :)

Gotta go to work!

Good luck.

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View Yonak's profile

Yonak

986 posts in 2440 days


#15 posted 06-14-2014 07:05 PM

If your property is an old farm property it’s possible the previous owner had a walnut tree come down and, not knowing what else to do with it, had it milled and put up a fence. Unfinished and weathered, it could look like the top picture. ..So what kind of property it is could give some additional information.

While not an excellent outdoor wood, walnut can stand up to weather fairly well, especially in ideal conditions, such as not having constant contact with the dirt.

View BenI's profile

BenI

333 posts in 3097 days


#16 posted 06-14-2014 09:51 PM

fire yeah maybe? It does have vertical grain.

doc I think you may be misunderstanding my post. This fence was already built and I’m taking it down, and going to save the boards.

yonak – I live in the suburbs of Chicago so not farmland. I’m not real knowledgeable about wood but walnut probably would not like our brutal winters and hot summers but again, I’m no expert.

-- Ben from IL

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DocSavage45

9023 posts in 3761 days


#17 posted 06-14-2014 10:18 PM

Understood. Suggestion was to see the commercial version to check out the type of wood and dimensions of it. Good luck.

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View LiveEdge's profile

LiveEdge

600 posts in 2539 days


#18 posted 06-14-2014 10:31 PM

Unless you got a really poor sniffer, I’ve never met WRC that doesn’t smell. Stick your nose right up and take a big sniff. If it doesn’t smell like a sauna, I don’t think it is WRC.

View WDHLT15's profile

WDHLT15

1819 posts in 3395 days


#19 posted 06-15-2014 12:52 AM

I also believe it to be western red cedar.

-- Danny Located in Perry, GA. Forester. Wood-Mizer LT40HD35 Sawmill. Nyle L53 Dehumidification Kiln. hamsleyhardwood.com

View hookfoot's profile

hookfoot

388 posts in 2868 days


#20 posted 06-15-2014 01:16 AM

It sure looks like some old weathered walnut that I have. To a lot of people it does not matter what species it is as long as it is wood.

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richardwootton

1701 posts in 2874 days


#21 posted 06-15-2014 02:41 AM

I’d be willing to bet money that it’s not walnut. I think the weather exposure has just darkened the color to be reminiscent of walnut.

-- Richard, Hot Springs, Ar -- Galoot In Training

View BenI's profile

BenI

333 posts in 3097 days


#22 posted 06-15-2014 02:48 AM

doc my apologizes for not understanding what you meant.

liveedge I’ll try to remember to give it a good sniff tomorrow sometime and see if I notice it then. Wouldn’t it being out in the elements for so long decrease the smell though or since it’s freshly milled it should smell again?

hookfoot I’ll put it to good use either way, I’m just curious mainly I’ve never seen cedar have since tight, straight grain like that or that deep of color. In all fairness, my experience with cedar is somewhat limited.

richard That makes sense since sunlight/UV rays can dark wood color.

-- Ben from IL

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bowedcurly

519 posts in 2648 days


#23 posted 06-15-2014 04:06 AM

Looks like Sweet Gum to me it has the grays that sweet gum has, kinda looks like pooplar

-- Staining killed the wood<<<<<>>>>>Dyeing gave it life

View BenI's profile

BenI

333 posts in 3097 days


#24 posted 06-15-2014 02:06 PM

Just gave it a sniff and didn’t notice any smell at all. A couple people mentioned an end grain photo, here’s two that hopefully will help.

-- Ben from IL

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AnonymousRequest

861 posts in 2468 days


#25 posted 06-15-2014 03:48 PM

Top pics look like cedar.

View LiveEdge's profile

LiveEdge

600 posts in 2539 days


#26 posted 06-15-2014 04:50 PM

If you freshly planed it and you couldn’t smell anything, I don’t think it is WRC. I just picked up some fir last week that is over 100 years old from an old tannery. I planed some and it quickly smelled just like fir. I don’t think age removes the smell from coniferous trees.

I know I’m in the minority, but I don’t think you have WRC.

Since walnut is the second guess, here is what you can do. Can you dent it with your fingernail? I just walked out to the garage and could easily dent WRC with my fingernail. I can’t on a piece of walnut.

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BenI

333 posts in 3097 days


#27 posted 06-15-2014 09:27 PM

Just did that and I could make a small indent with my fingernail in it and like you said, I couldn’t in some walnut I have.

I planned it Monday but I don’t think the smell would disappear that quickly. I’m still thinking the majority has it with western red cedar. Maybe it’s just an odd color of it or something.

-- Ben from IL

View LiveEdge's profile

LiveEdge

600 posts in 2539 days


#28 posted 06-16-2014 12:43 AM

The denting makes me feel a little better about it. You can’t dent walnut so at least it’s not that.

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changeoffocus

467 posts in 2536 days


#29 posted 06-16-2014 12:52 AM

interesting set of posts, thanks

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11861 posts in 4607 days


#30 posted 06-16-2014 03:19 AM

Clear (no knots) Vertical Grain Western Red Cedar or Vertical Grain WRC.
I’ve handled thousands of board feet of this wood during my 20+ years in the lumber and building supply arena.
The colors can vary widely depending on where the tree grew and which part of the tree the sample came from.i.e. Sapwood versus Heartwood.
This couldn’t be any further away from Black Walnut than the Earth is from the Sun and beyond.
Look at your endgrain pic and also the one I supplied for you….Notice anything ?
Have a great day : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View BenI's profile

BenI

333 posts in 3097 days


#31 posted 06-16-2014 04:05 PM

They do look quite similar dusty haha. I think it’s safe to say, it is cedar which is what I kind of figured.

Thanks to everyone for the posts and their thoughts.

-- Ben from IL

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