News Focused on the Wood Market

African blackwood is rare and a tough cut

Monday, 13 December 2010 00:00

When it comes to the combination of tonal qualities, appearance, density and expensive price, African blackwood is in a league of its own. The trees grow primarily in Mozambique and Tanzania and the main uses of the wood are for woodwind instruments, turnings and occasionally small pieces of furniture.

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Black walnut sales are hitting a groove

Sunday, 12 December 2010 00:00

25_wood_mktAs domestic wood markets begin to rebound, walnut has become the cream of the crop for many retail and wholesale dealers. The current trend to darker woods has made walnut a more popular choice for cabinetmakers and furniture makers than cherry or hard maple.

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Spanish cedar fills void left by mahogany

Monday, 15 November 2010 00:00

26_spanishcedar_01Bigleaf mahogany, once the most desired of all South American hardwoods, is well on its way to becoming a distant memory. In November 2003, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) imposed stricter regulations on mahogany trade by officially listing it on CITES Appendix II. Shipping of mahogany, in the form of logs, sawn wood, veneer sheets and plywood, must be accompanied by a CITES Appendix-II export permit. With shipments from Brazil indefinitely halted and a subsequent crackdown on mahogany logging in Peru, mahogany shipments from South America have virtually shut down.

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Soft maple can be a low-cost alternative

Sunday, 14 November 2010 00:00

25_softmaple_01Soft maple doesn't receive the spotlight that many domestic woods do, but for cabinetmakers and some furniture makers it is a popular alternative to the more expensive hard maple. A year ago, Woodshop News wrote the following about the status of domestic wood markets: "Wood dealers have a 'wait-and-see' attitude when it comes to forecasting how wood markets will perform in 2010. The majority of suppliers agree that wood markets have bottomed out and may actually be slightly on the rise. But any mention of a substantial rally taking place was greeted cautiously by even the most optimistic of dealers."

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Wherever you are, ebony will cost you — perhaps $100/bf

Monday, 18 October 2010 00:00

29_ebonyThere are several certainties about African ebony. First of all, it is hard, heavy and dense. What is also noticeable about the wood is its price - ebony is one of the most expensive woods in the world. Regularly priced between $75/bf and $100/bf, it makes one wonder why more people don't ebonize a significantly cheaper species with the use of aniline dye, stain or paint. But for wealthy customers, the real deal is the only deal.

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