Butternut and Catalpa

     BUTTERNUT
A hardwood
Botanical Name: Juglans cinerea
A member of the walnut family, butternut has assumed a place of honor as the wood often chosen for church alters. This tree is treasured for more then it's wood; it possesses a rich, delicious nut and produces a sap that is used to make a sweet syrup similar to maple syrup.
Other Names; White walnut, oil nut.
Sources: Canada, U.S.A.
Characteristics: Straight grain; soft but coarse texture; medium light brown.
Uses: Furniture, interior trim on boats, interior joinery, wood carving, veneers.
Workability: Generally good; because wood is soft, it is important to keep cutters sharp; will fuzz up when sanded; poor bending properties. Wood carving properties are good, tools must be kept sharp.
Finishing: Accepts finishes very well.
Weight: 28 lb./cu. ft.
Price: Moderate


CATALPA
A hardwood
Botanical Name: Catalpa speciosa
A soft, attractive wood, catalpa is a fine cabinet wood, easy to work with a wavy figure. The wood is relatively inexpensive, but often difficult to find locally, It's open grain and excessive softness make it unsuitable for furniture that will receive heavy use. Resistant to decay, it is ideal for indoor or outdoor carvings.
Other Names: Catawba, cigartree, indian-bean, northern catalpa.
Source: U.S.A.
Characteristics: Generally un even, wavy grain; mediumcoarse, even texture; light tan with a prominent darker growth ring figure.
Uses: Cabinetmaking, turning, picture frames, general ornamental uses and wood carvings.
I have found, it's prominent grain detracts from the details in a relief carving but it makes beautiful stylized carvings.
Workability: Generally very good; may fray when crosscut; dulls cutters only slightly.
Finishing: Accepts finishes well.
Weight: 28-32 lb./cu. ft.
Price: Inexpensive to moderate.