On Fri, October 31, 2008 7:13 am, AlbionWood wrote:
> I've generally started out with a short list of woods that IMO are
> reasonably close to European woods used in period, in terms of appearance
> and character. SO most of my stuff has been made of white oak, walnut, or
> ash. My projects have mostly been intended for outdoor/camping/tourney
> use, so things like pine or poplar are usually out of the question because
> they aren't durable enough. Price is a secondary consideration, because
> the cost of the wood is only a small fraction of the value of my labor.
Don't forget maple, beech if you can get it, and some of the Mediterranean
woods. Iberian craftspeople use a lot of olive wood, which might be
available from California sources as well. It turns very nicely, and
with a bit of stain myrtlewood might pass for it. :-)
If you befriend tree surgeons or city arborists, a lot of European trees
are over here as street ornamentals. Lots and lots of white birch (good
for traditional broom making too!) Norway pine (what the English have been
importing as "deal" since the Middle Ages) and others depending on your
climate. Check with orchardists too--most of our fruit trees were brought
here from Europe. English walnut doesn't have the reputation among
American cabinetmakers that native black walnut has, but it's a very
attractive wood and quite strong--I've made medium and large handscrews
out of it.
FWIW, Douglas Fir is also a native European wood, if you go back far
enough. Very early period, though--the glaciers exterminated it in the Old
World during the first of the Ice Ages.