WOOD ID POSTER:
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240 woods on a poster (24"x36")


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REDWOOD

Sequoia sempervirens, Sequoiadendron gigantea, and Metasequoia glyptostroboid

Sequoia sempervirens, Sequoiadendron gigantea, and Metasequoia glyptostroboid all of the family Cupressaceae (formerly Taxodiaceae)

Generally, in the USA, Sequoia sempervirens is called redwood and Sequoiadendron gigantea is called giant sequoia. Metasequoia glyptostroboid is an obscure Chinese wood (common name "dawn redwood" in the USA) that was thought to be extinct but was redicovered in the 1940's --- as far as USA craftspeople are concerned, it's a non-entity but I include it here both for completelness sake (it IS considered a true redwood) and for the simple reason that I have a sample of it.





my samples: --- colors are accurate throughout


sample plank and end grain --- judging from the extremelly low ring count, I'd say this was a VERY fast-growing tree! Compare this to the ring count in the redwood piece directly below. This was listed as Sequoia washingtoninana which is a synonym for Sequoia gigantea


end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


sample plank and end grain sold to me as redwood / Sequoia sempervirons --- compare the ring count in this piece with that in the piece directly above and keep in mind that this one does NOT have high-count rings; it's something like 15 rings/inch --- the piece above is something like 2 rings per inch. The color on these pics is slightly too orange; they should be a dull red-brown


end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of giant sequoia / Sequoiandendron giganteum --- Check out the wide-spaced growth rings on this piece above (4/inch) compared to the old-growth sample in the next set down the page (about 15/inch)


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of giant sequoia / Sequoiandendron giganteum --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


both sides of a sample plank of old growth giant sequoia / Sequoiandendron giganteum --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site. Check out the tight growth rings on this piece of old growth wood (about 15/inch) compared to the very wide-spaced rings on the piece directly above (4/inch)


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above along with a side grain closeup of a perfectly quartersawn surface, emphasizing that there are no visible rays or ray flakes (pretty clear even though the side surface was not well sanded)


both sides of a sample plank of old growth giant sequoia / Sequoiandendron giganteum --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


both sides of a small plank given to me as giant sequoia --- HUGE enlargements are present. Check out the VERY widely space growth rings (about 1/inch) compared to the sample above this


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above --- HUGE enlargements are present for both.



the pieces in this section were all provided by Rex Scates, whom I thank for the contribution to the site


stump chunk and end grain closeup


stump chunk and end grain closeup


END GRAIN UPDATE of the piece directly above


limb sections and a small chunk and an end grain closeup from the small chunk


limb section and end grain closeup


dawn redwood



sample plank and end grain of dawn redwood / Metasequoia glyptostroboid


end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of dawn redwood / Metasequoia glyptostroboid --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above
end dawn redwood




a small stick and end grain and then the end grain shot with the wood moistened with water


a small stick and end grain and then the end grain shot with the wood moistened with water



both sides, and end grain shot and a side grain shot, all of a nice plank donated by Jim Glynn, whom I thank for his continuing generous donations to the site. The color on the first two shots is completely accurate; the end grain and side grain shots are off a little in that I removed just a hair too much red when doing the color correction. Both levels of enlargement are there for all of these pics.


end grain closeup of the piece directly above --- opposite end from the one shown above. I have no idea why some of the grain lines are very dark compared to the others


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above --- I'm not clear about the orientation on this shot, but it's definitely from that piece of wood.



same plank as directly above but moistened with water. Now here's a wood where a finishing agent clearly makes a significant improvement in the color and overall beauty of the wood. The curl is MUCH more obvious in the wet pics. I have no explanation at all for why the end grain, showing the growth rings, absorbed the water completely in some sections and almost not at all in others. This is not a case of my having allowed the water to start to dry off before taking the pic, it was simply that no amount of rubbing would get the water to sink in to those areas. The most likely explaination is that there is some sort of resin in the wood in these areas.


both sides of a very small piece of curly redwood --- the curl is better than what shows up in these dry pics


the same piece as above but moistened with water and turned at an angle to best show the curl


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


moistened quilted redwood pairs --- pics contributed by Todd Levy --- thanks Todd. Although not good bookmatches, these are beautiful sets and shows up much better in the enlargements.


both sides of a redwood burl sample plank; the difference in color is because the first pic is of a 320-grit sanded face and the 2nd is of a 120-grit sanded face. HUGE enlargements are present. This piece was represented to me as "2nd growth redwood"


the end grain of the piece directly above


face grain closeup and HIGH GRIT END GRAIN CLOSEUP of the piece directly above


long veneer sheet and closeup. The closeup has an optical inteference pattern that gives the wood an unrealistic grain wave that disappears in the enlargement, but the color is quite accurate; this is a lovely smooth red.


a long veneer sheet and a couple of closeups --- the somewhat muddy color is quite accurate


vavona burl veneer (see discussion below with the web pics near the bottom of the page)


redwood burl veneer sheet and two closeups


redwood burl veneer sheet and two closeups


redwood burl veneer


curly piece --- not a good quality representation of curly redwood; I bought this as junk, pretty much, and that's about what it is.


curly veneer --- I got this in a box of mixed thick veneer cutoffs from a jewlery box maker who tells me that this used to be readily available commerically but is no longer. I've seen a couple of web pics of items made from this kind of veneer and they are stunning. The fellow who sold me this lot says the results are "eye poping" and I believe it.


The Wood Book pics


flat cut, quartersawn, end grain
redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) from The Wood Book --- both levels of enlargement are available for all 3 views


flat cut, quartersawn, end grain
redwood (Sequoiadendron giganteum, reported in the Wood Book under an old name of Sequoia gigantea and also listed as big tree, giant redwood and redwood of the mountains) from The Wood Book --- both levels of enlargement are available for all 3 views



web pics:


an illustration of why this wood is called "giant redwood" and "giant sequoia". I remember driving (well, riding actually) through/under one of these about 60 years ago and being very impressed.


heartwood, first grade and 2nd grade


heartwood, construction grade and lower grade


clear with sapwood and 2nd grade with sapwood


construction grade and lowest grade (both with sapwood)


end grain


log slabs


flat cut planks


quartersawn planks


misc redwood planks and turning stock


planks with a colors that are just moronic


very large plank (that's a person at the left)


this was listed as a redwood plank but neither the color nor the grain looks like redwood to me


old growth slab


slabs --- some of these have a mild curl but none of them were listed as curly, which is nice because it means the vendors were honest and not given to exaggeration.


figured redwood plank pair


listed as "flamed" plank


turning stock


veneer


quartersawn veneer that shows ray flakes really nicely in the 2nd enlargement


quilted veneer


three sets of burls all from the same vendor


misc burl pieces


bowl blanks listed as Coastal redwood / Sequoia sempervirens burl


contributed by Daniel Dill whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site, this is a pic of a set of "carmalized" vavona burl pieces. Carmilazation is the common name for what happens when a fire melts the sap in the tree and causes a chemical change. I've never worked with any such wood myself so can't comment on how it differs from regular redwood burl, but I have seen it several times on the internet.


burl piece with a color that is just silly


this was listed as "lace burl" but I think that's just a made-up marketing term and this is just normal redwood burl (vavona)


burl turning stock and closeup


curly burl


burl slabs


curly planks


curly plank pairs


curly veneer


curly bowl blanks


old growth curly


fiddleback veneer


turning sticks made from redwood burl


small bookmatched sections of burl


burl veneer


bookmatched burl veneer


bookmatched burl veneer pieces


listed as "lace" burl veneer, and since it's from the BogusColorVendor, the color is very suspect


curly (probably moistened) --- some vendors would list these as quilted, although curly seems to be the favored term with redwood


curly planks not moistened


curly planks and turning stock --- from my experience (see my own sample at the top of the page), I'd say all of these have been moistened for the pics.


curly plank and closeup, moistened for the pic


closeup of a quartersawn curly plank


curly planks with color that is just silly


curly slabs


bowl blanks of curly redwood


curly redwood turning stock


listed as "quilted curly", although it seems to me it should just be one or the other (and in these cases, probably "quilted", not just "curly") --- but whatever you call it, it's really pretty wood !


a piece of curly redwood, shown both dry and then wet


two different jewlery box tops of curly redwood, the first one finished and the second one still dry (in progress)


curly plank --- boths sides and a closeup; these are from the BogusColorVendor so the red is probably exaggerated


book matched curly redwood sets


finished box side that was listed as "waterfall" redwood, but to me it's just mottled and is likely just a variation of curly redwood


listed as birdseye redwood



makers of cigar humidors seem particularly fond of the common name "vavona" for redwood burl. When I first started this site, I was not sure if that was a separate species or not but I now know that it is not, but that's why this set of pics is here --- these were all listed as "vavona".


solid "vavona" burls


veneer listed as vavona burl / Sequoi sempervirens


"vavona" burl veneers. The last one was listed as "rainbow", but I believe this to be a fabricated marketing term, not a recognized common name


a 4-way bookmatched vavona burl veneer set





guitar sections, two burls and a two curly sheets; the color on the 2nd burl piece seems to me to be WAY too orange --- I thought I saw notes that these were for guitar backs and had them so listed, but luthier Rick Lee tells me that only a cretin would use such beautiful burls in particular for the BACK and that these are undoubtedly intended as FRONTS, not backs. My thanks for the correction.


burl bowl blank


a vase made from a redwood burl --- on the enlargement in particular, you can see the natural voids due to gum deposits.


burl platter --- really nice piece of wood went into this one; it's rare to find a piece this big with such a consistent burl pattern


curly redwood bowl and platter


bowl with knots and very low ring count


12" diameter redwood bowl by Steve Earis, big enlargements are available


redwood section on a laminated bowl. The pic on the left is of the piece fresh off the lathe and the one on the right is after one coat of natural stain. This is a case where, I believe, the wood looks better WITHOUT the finishing agent.