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View SpottedGum's profile

Is this Western Red Cedar

by SpottedGum
posted 01-28-2017 09:46 AM


19 replies so far

View clin's profile

clin

1072 posts in 1563 days


#1 posted 01-28-2017 04:42 PM

Coastal, western red cedar trees grow very large, like redwoods, and are known for producing very large, clear, straight grain boards. Your board certainly looks like western red cedar.

I’m not sure who was saying red cedar is full of knots. Like any wood, there are lower grades with correspondingly more knots. The lowest grades are what you commonly see as fence boards at the BORG.

It also matters where the trees grow. Even though it is the same species. Western red cedar that grows on the east side of the rockies, known as inland red cedar, is very yellow in color and the trees are much smaller. I’m not sure if clear grades of inland red cedar even exist.

The inland and coastal version of boards look so different, you wouldn’t think they come from the same tree species.

-- Clin

View AlaskaGuy's profile

AlaskaGuy

5460 posts in 2877 days


#2 posted 01-28-2017 06:10 PM

I can’t tell by the photo, I even turned my head horizontally.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

117802 posts in 4145 days


#3 posted 01-28-2017 06:18 PM

With the hand planning marks, it’s pretty hard to see the color and grain. I can’t really tell either.

View JollyGreen67's profile

JollyGreen67

1676 posts in 3330 days


#4 posted 01-28-2017 06:19 PM

unknown

-- When I was a kid I wanted to be older . . . . . this CRAP is not what I expected ! RIP 09/08/2018

View Steve's profile

Steve

192 posts in 2568 days


#5 posted 01-29-2017 03:01 AM

Western Red Cedar.

View firefighterontheside's profile

firefighterontheside

20705 posts in 2424 days


#6 posted 01-29-2017 03:54 AM

Western red cedar can vary greatly in color. It can be brown like your picture or very light as in Steves picture. If somebody is gonna go thru the expense of shipping WRC to Australia, I would imagine it would be some pretty clear stuff with no knots.

Also, people sometimes talk about red cedar, but don’t say whether they mean western or eastern. They are not related at all, other than the fact they’re both conifers. Eastern red cedar is a juniper that does indeed have a lot of very hard knots.

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

View wood2woodknot's profile

wood2woodknot

102 posts in 2541 days


#7 posted 01-29-2017 04:25 AM


With the hand planning marks, it s pretty hard to see the color and grain. I can t really tell either.

- a1Jim

..... or the smell.

-- ajh

View runswithscissors's profile

runswithscissors

3081 posts in 2593 days


#8 posted 01-29-2017 04:57 AM

Old growth heartwood wester red cedar can look like your photo. The chest pictured appears to have a lot of sapwood. Still could be cedar.

I think too soft for a chest of drawers. Maybe okay for a cedar chest, as in the photo.

-- I admit to being an adrenaline junky; fortunately, I'm very easily frightened

View SpottedGum's profile

SpottedGum

13 posts in 1347 days


#9 posted 01-29-2017 05:50 AM

I docked the ends and took some more photos with an iphone rather than my Samsung. I could not smell anything up against the cut and I have a reasonable sensitive nose. It appears very soft like cedar would be.
Thanks for your time so far.

View jerryminer's profile

jerryminer

960 posts in 2009 days


#10 posted 01-29-2017 07:22 AM

Starting to look like redwood. Was redwood commonly used in Australia?

-- Jerry, making sawdust professionally since 1976

View SpottedGum's profile

SpottedGum

13 posts in 1347 days


#11 posted 01-29-2017 09:34 AM

Not that I know of. So I did some calcs and measured that this timber weights in at 375kg/cum (+/- 10% because of my scales) so its looking like maybe too soft for any decent furniture?, as runwithscissors said. I can dent the surface pressing hard with my finger nail

View EricTwice's profile

EricTwice

248 posts in 1101 days


#12 posted 01-29-2017 11:02 AM

It does look like redwood. Nice quarter-sawn stock too. Tap on it and see if it resonates.

Can you work around the nail holes and use it for musical instrument sound boards?

-- nice recovery, They should pay extra for that mistake, Eric E.

View firefighterontheside's profile

firefighterontheside

20705 posts in 2424 days


#13 posted 01-29-2017 02:07 PM

Looks like old growth Douglas fir.

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

View Aj2's profile (online now)

Aj2

2576 posts in 2365 days


#14 posted 01-29-2017 03:15 PM

My vote is for Redwood.Since cedar and Dougfir wood both have a smell.

Aj

-- Aj

View clin's profile

clin

1072 posts in 1563 days


#15 posted 01-29-2017 03:35 PM

The density is spot on for western red cedar but is similar for redwood. I’m not sure there is much practical difference. Both are light weight, soft and tend to splinter and split easily.

I agree that it is not ideal wood for a chest of drawers. Also, western red cedar is not aromatic cedar that is used to line cedar chests. I believe aromatic cedar is eastern red cedar. Though I’m no expert.

If all the wood is clear and quarter sawn, like the piece in you picture, that’s some nice wood. But I would look for an application that can take advantage of the primary qualities of that wood, resistant to insects and rotting. In other words, an outdoor project. Not that cedar isn’t used indoors, but it’s usually archectectual rather than furnishings.

That wood would make for great outdoor furniture, such as a bench. Still have to watch those splinters. Planters would be another good application. Gates, arbors and other outdoor structures.

-- Clin

View Madmark2's profile

Madmark2

558 posts in 1156 days


#16 posted 01-29-2017 10:14 PM

Better hope it isn’t Western Red Cedar as it is EPA listed as a potential carcinogen. Treat sawdust as hazmat and wear a mask while working.

M

View runswithscissors's profile

runswithscissors

3081 posts in 2593 days


#17 posted 01-30-2017 02:09 AM

That’s an overreaction, I think. I’ve worked with it, and have had no problems (attributable to the cedar, that is). Anyhow, the thing about life is that it is fatal, right?

-- I admit to being an adrenaline junky; fortunately, I'm very easily frightened

View SpottedGum's profile

SpottedGum

13 posts in 1347 days


#18 posted 01-30-2017 04:32 AM

So I searched for Red Wood on an Aussie timber site and it appears significant quantities were imported last century.
Still, not bad for a freeby, 40 lin m.
Thanks for your assistance

View Texcaster's profile

Texcaster

1286 posts in 2241 days


#19 posted 01-30-2017 09:50 AM

I would say Redwood. Some work in Redwood, Oregon ( Doug Fir ) and WRC. I have a 300 mm x 75 mm x 1.8m, quartered lump of Redwood to get stuck into yet. All this timber is salvage, in very good grades. Oregon replaced Eculypt Hardwood in the mines here because it would creak and groan long before it would fail.

No polish, Redwood

With polish, Redwood

WRC

Oregon

-- Mama calls me Texcaster but my real name is Mr. Earl.

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