Types of wood and their uses

One of the few naturally renewable resources is wood. It is a significant product that is used in both our daily lives and the economy. Newspapers, books, magazines, and other types of wood are utilized to make homes and furniture. Additionally, it is used to make fence posts, utility poles, railroad sleepers, bridges, textile textiles, fuelwood, and organic compounds. Wood is a crucial component in the production of plywood, lumber, and wood pallets as well as the fiber used to make paper, paperboard, fiberboard panels, rayon, and acetate.

Building sustainably is a wise decision today. Many environmental advantages of using wood as a building material are important to local communities around the nation. One of the few ecological and renewable building materials is wood. Compared to concrete, steel, and other building materials, wood products help buildings be more energy efficient and use less energy overall.

Additionally, wood helps to reduce carbon emissions into the atmosphere, slowing the effects of climate change. As we all know, as trees grow, they absorb carbon dioxide. These advantages increased when the wood was used to create a product. Well, in this article, I’ll be discussing different types of wood and their uses.

Read more: Properties of wood


Types of wood

All types of wood are classified into hardwoods, softwoods, and manufactured boards.

Hardwoods – Broad-leaved trees produce hardwoods. These trees contain flowers and bear fruit and nut- and fruit-seed seeds. Oak, beech, and mahogany are some examples. Hardwoods are stronger and more durable than softwoods and are also denser. They are employed for constructing furniture. Toys are frequently made from beech. Softwoods are significantly less expensive than hardwoods.

Softwoods – Trees that produce cones provide softwood. Examples include fir, pine, and redwood. Although softwoods can be used for doors and furniture, they are primarily employed in building roof trusses and stud walls.

Manufactured boards – Manufactured boards are processed timber. They have new and useful properties, examples are MDF (medium density fibreboard), plywood, and chipboards.

Furthermore, the followings are the different types of wood that are suitable for different projects:

  • Alder Wood
  • Ash
  • Aspen
  • Balsa Wood
  • Bamboo
  • Basswood
  • Beechwood
  • Birch Wood
  • California Redwood
  • Cedar Wood
  • Cherry
  • Douglas Fir
  • Ebony
  • Hardboard (Commonly known as HDF: High-Density Fiber Board)
  • Hardie Board: Fiber Cement Board
  • Larch / Tamarack
  • Luan (also spelled Lauan)
  • Mahogany
  • Maple
  • MDF: Medium Density Fiberboard
  • Oak
  • Oriented Strand Board (OSB)
  • Pine
  • Plywood
  • Pressure Treated Lumber
  • Poplar
  • Rosewood
  • SPF Lumber
  • Spruce
  • Teak
  • Walnut
  • Whitewood
  • Zebrawood


Read more: Understanding wood

Alder Wood

Due to its natural beauty, workability, and versatility, alder is a hardwood that is gradually growing in favor. It is most frequently observed in Southwest Canada and Northwest California. Since it belongs to the same family as the birch tree, it frequently has applications that are comparable. When freshly cut, alder will appear virtually white, but once exposed to air and sunlight, it will quickly turn a warm honey brown color. The typical grain of this medium-grade wood is straight, making it simple to carve, turn, and machine.

The wood also responds nicely to a range of finishing techniques. Sanded alder wood provides a very smooth surface that is simple to paint or stain. If you require particularly large solid pieces, keep in mind that the alder tree does not grow to very great heights or diameters. As a result, getting these pieces may be more difficult and costly.

Alder is widely used in the construction of cabinets and furniture. Additionally, it is a preferred option for picture frames and other decorative items. Alder wood is used in the hard body of electric guitars, which is arguably one of its more specialized applications. A highly pure tone is produced by alder wood, which is difficult to achieve with other types of wood. Alder is frequently preferred for electric guitars due to its tone above even rare hardwoods like mahogany.



Currently, it can be challenging to find ash wood, particularly in light of the recent problems with the Emerald Ash borer, an invasive pest that led to the early demise of many of these trees. It will be simpler to locate this wood if you reside in a region where Ash trees are natural and grow in profusion as opposed to if you do not. If you can locate it at a local lumberyard close to you, ash replicates the same strength and qualities as white oak but often costs less. The wood is stain-resistant and suitable for a variety of tasks.

ash wood


Because aspen has a light color, it absorbs paint and stain nicely. This wood can occasionally give off the impression of having a fuzzy texture. Northeast America is where aspen is farmed, yet it can occasionally be hard to find. It is often only utilized for extremely particular tasks in which Aspen wood is suited because of its generally limited availability.

Building saunas is one of the most specialized uses of aspen wood. Because it doesn’t transmit heat, wood can withstand wetness well with little swelling or movement. It is sometimes used to make matchsticks because it does not readily carry heat. These characteristics also make Aspen suitable for use in furniture drawer slides since it can assist decrease sticking. This wood is perfect for creating chopsticks and other culinary tools because it has no flavor or odor.


Read more: Different types of wood finishes and finishing products

Balsa Wood

An extremely lightweight hardwood called balsa is frequently used in craft and hobby applications. Since balsa wood is not extremely sturdy, many skilled woodworkers tend to have a poor opinion of it, despite the fact that it is sometimes overlooked and has numerous useful applications. Balsa wood is most often first used by us in model kits and building projects from our childhood. Although most serious woodworkers may view balsa wood as child’s play, this material is actually the one that initiates many people to construction and woodworking.

Due to its frequent substitution in ships and aircraft during World Wars I and II, this wood also has a very extensive history. Typically, balsa wood is brought into North America from Central and South America. Balsa wood grows incredibly quickly, but it only lasts for a limited time—most trees only yield useful lumber before they are ten years old. Many people are astonished to hear that balsa wood is frequently used to construct rafts, life preservers, and other objects that are intended to float because of how buoyant the material is. Stunningly created products that can be made from balsa wood include surfboards.

Due to its low density, balsa wood is typically not very durable. Because of this, many people favor basswood and birch over balsa wood for any job that requires the ability to withstand weight or stress. Balsa is an excellent material to use, however, if you DO need to construct something out of wood that might easily break or split apart, such as when creating sets for theater and movie sets.

To achieve various looks on the cheap, the wood grain can be readily painted or stained and used as a veneer. Balsa wood does not play well with nails or screws, thus glue is frequently used when assembling items that employ it. Often, all you need is a sharp utility or craft knife to cut very thin pieces of balsa wood.

balsa wood


It is better to compare Bamboo to hardwood Red oak or Maple since it has similar hardness and strength. The high-density grass can sometimes be tough on tools.  Bamboo stems are especially popular for garden furniture, garden decorations, fences, and privacy screens. You can also see bamboo in cabinets, fine furniture, and even hardwood flooring. Part of what makes Bamboo able to resist decay outdoors is its natural waxlike coating. If you wish to stain, paint, or glue bamboo, you will need to sand the wood first to ensure the paint or glue grips to the wood. Most bamboo should be sealed and protected for longevity if it is used outdoors.

Given that bamboo is similar in hardness and strength to hardwood Red oak or Maple, it is preferable to make this comparison. Sometimes the dense grass can be difficult for tools to work in. Particularly common uses for bamboo stems include garden furniture, garden accents, fences, and privacy screens. Bamboo is also used as hardwood floors, luxury furniture, and cabinetry. Bamboo’s inherent waxy coating contributes to its ability to resist degradation in outdoor environments. Sanding the wood first can help the paint or glue adhere to the bamboo if you want to stain, paint, or glue it. If bamboo is used outside, it should be sealed and preserved to ensure lifespan.

It is best to let bamboo adjust to the environment before cutting it, especially if you are in a drier and colder region than where the plant is traditionally produced, as moisture can cause the bamboo to swell or shrink.


Read more: Understanding wood finishing


Basswood has a very tight, straight grain and a mild shade of cream for its color. As soon as it has been properly acclimated and cured, the wood is not prone to warping or movement. For woodturners and woodcarvers, basswood is a preferred hardwood. For people who want to create models and do small woodworking, it is also a very popular option. Due to its accessibility and simplicity of usage, basswood is a popular choice among woodturners.

These types of wood are a common choice for food storage containers and may even be used for cooking utensils because it has no odor, taste, or known allergies. Basswood is simple to locate and often affordable. It can be difficult to stain basswood consistently. In most circumstances, it is best to simply enjoy the wood’s natural surface, preferably with a protective clear coat of oil rather than painting it. Basswood projects are popular among decorative painters because once primed, they may be finished with a very smooth surface.


Beech is a hardwood that is frequently used to make woodturning projects, furniture, and veneers. This cream-colored wood has a regular grain pattern that is often straight and tight, with some gray flecking on occasion. The wood has a very pale hue, however, it typically has a yellowish-reddish cream tone.

It is a hardwood that is best recognized for being simple to steam bend. Because of this, beech is a great material to use when crafting any kind of curved furniture for the interior, such as chairs. Despite this advantage, Beechwood occasionally experiences movement, shrinkage, and swelling when exposed to high humidity or erratic moisture levels in the environment.

Pianos frequently use beech for the pin blocks and bridge of the piano mechanism. Beechwood, one of the most reasonably priced hardwoods, is available in a variety of sizes and as a veneer. As long as your tools are sharp, working with the wood is not too difficult. It may be easily bonded and stained if that is what you want to do.

Birch Wood

At nearby lumberyards and home improvement stores, birch is a type of hardwood that is simple to locate and frequently one of the more economical hardwood species. Birch is an extremely durable wood that can be used for virtually anything you can think of. Birch is frequently used as a less expensive option than oak. But you should be aware that birch wood can be very challenging to stain. Sometimes stains might leave behind blotchy regions that appear uneven. Birch is an excellent and affordable hardwood to choose from if you intend to paint your project because of this.

Read more: Different types of wood joints and their working

California Redwood

California redwood trees are types of softwood distinguished by their enormous size and vibrant red color. Similar to its sisters in Cedar, Redwood has a very distinctive wood grain pattern and is well suited for outdoor applications due to its weather resistance. Redwood is frequently employed in the construction of retaining walls, decks, and garden borders. It is also frequently used to make railroad ties and trestles. Redwood is a good option for tables, large cabinetry projects, and veneers as well.

Cedar Wood

In addition to its unique wood texture and color, cedar types of wood are also known for their pleasant scent, which is thought to ward off insects and moths. It is occasionally a preferred option to use in closets and storage chests due to its pleasant scent and pest repelling qualities. Cedar is a great option for outdoor construction projects as well. This wood can tolerate the harsh weather outside pretty well and is frequently thought to be rot-resistant. Because of this, cedar is frequently used outside, including for decks, patio furniture, fencing, and decorative siding.

Cedarwood, which belongs to the cypress family, comes in a variety of species. For particular uses, some cedar species are superior to others. Some common varieties of cedarwood include Western Red Cedar, Eastern Red Cedar, Northern White Cedar, Yellow Cedar, Spanish Cedar

Despite the fact that many people like cedar for its aroma, it’s crucial to keep in mind that certain people can be allergic to naturally occur oils. To prevent sawdust inhalation while working with cedar wood, it’s crucial to put on gloves and a mask. Cedar should not be used for cooking utensils or any other projects that would be used with food or have prolonged contact with the skin due to the high chance of irritation.


The American Black Cherry fruit tree yields gorgeous cherry wood. This wood frequently starts off with a light pink hue that gradually darkens and turns scarlet with time. Black flecking on cherry wood occasionally appears as a result of mineral deposits over time. You might want to spend some time making sure the items you choose for cherry wood match one another. Cherry can be stained, but most people prefer to leave it in its original state and give it a clear protective finish to highlight the wood’s beauty and the aging process natural patina.

Read more: Understanding woodworking joints

Douglas Fir

Another excellent, affordable, and sturdy softwood to think about using for beginner woodworking projects is fir. Fir is typically a fantastic option for projects you intend to paint because it may occasionally be challenging to stain and doesn’t really have much wood grain. Fir has a much tighter wood grain than pine, which provides it with a little bit more stability and strength. In construction and utility applications where a natural wood grain finish isn’t crucial, fir is frequently employed.


Since ebony is one of the few timbers that are completely black in color, it is simple to recognize. Its numerous qualities make it attractive for a variety of wood carving and specialty woodworking applications. It is a very dense hardwood. It’s vital to remember that ebony is a protected species and is frequently subject to strict international regulations. The only place where it is permitted to harvest wood is in Cameroon, though not necessarily under optimum conditions.

For this reason, finding ebony wood can occasionally be exceedingly challenging. The tree is quite rare because of its slow growth. Ebony was once used to build musical instruments, including the fretboards for guitars and the black keys on pianos. Old pianos and other unplayable musical instruments could make intriguing sources for recovering old ebony wood. Although the black keys were frequently made of other sorts of wood, antique pianos very likely had actual solid ebony keys.

Ebony is a wonderful material for carving since it can hold detail and provide a lovely finish. Most woodworkers advise using only hand tools when working with ebony because of how hard and dense it is and how difficult it can be to machine. For any type of job you might undertake with ebony, you should absolutely opt for the blades with a carbide point.

Hardboard (Commonly known as HDF: High-Density Fiber Board)

Hardboard is a type of engineered wood product created from fibers of wood that have been tightly crushed. Depending on whether a wet or dry procedure is used to make the board, the wood will either have two “good sides” or only one. Hardboard is typically coupled with a wood veneer that can be tinted because it has a distinct texture and no discernible grain pattern. Hardboard can be painted, but in order to prevent paint from subsequently peeling or chipping, the surface will typically need to be prepared.

Hardboard, a form of engineered wood, is occasionally used to create chalkboards, which are then painted flat. This can also be a very quick and simple way to manufacture your chalkboard, and as an added cosmetic touch, you can always build a frame out of finer wood. There are numerous distinct types of hardboard, and they frequently go by several names. One kind of hardboard that is frequently used in the construction of theater sets and props is Masonite. Additionally, it is frequently used by moving and construction businesses to make it simple to move objects on dollies or carts and to protect floor surfaces temporarily.

Hardboard that has been “tempered” has been baked after being treated with linseed oil. This procedure can assist increase its strength, moisture resistance, and durability. A hardboard that has been consistently pierced with holes is called a pegboard, sometimes known as a perforated hardboard. These holes normally have a diameter of 1/8 inch and a spacing of 1/4 inch between each hole. Pegboard can be a terrific method to organize your garage or workbench because it is frequently used for storage and as display racks.

Read more: Working of drilling machine on wood & metal

Although hardboard is not typically used to construct high-end furniture, it can assist lend support and strength to numerous furniture pieces to enable cost-effective construction, such as the backs of television stands and entertainment centers. Since dressers and cabinets are typically against walls and won’t be seen, it is also frequently used as a background for them. Nearly every home improvement store has a hardboard, and you may also order it with confidence online. You may acquire engineered wood products online with confidence because they are uniformly constructed, preventing any issues with flaws or variations between pieces that you might have with natural wood.

Hardie Board: Fiber Cement Board

Hardboard should not be confused with Hardieboard or Hardie backer board. Despite the names sounding somewhat perplexing, they are two completely different things. The brand name for fiber cement board is Hardie board, a composite construction material. The James Hardie Brand is one of the leading businesses that manufacture and produce fiber cement boards, which is why it is frequently referred to as the Hardie board.

Cement and cellulose fibers are the main ingredients in fiber cement boards. Despite being an engineered board, it isn’t commonly referred to as “wood” and isn’t employed in most applications where wood would normally be used. The most popular substrate for tiled walls and floors is fiber cement board. Siding and decking made of composite fiber cement are also produced by the James Hardie firm.

Larch / Tamarack

Larch trees belong to the Larix family of trees and are often referred to as Tamarack trees. The Tamarack variety most frequently found in North America is Larix laricina. The species is more generally referred to as Larch in Eurasia and goes by the name Larix decidua. The Larch tree is a unique species of tree in the Cypress family, even though it is technically a softwood. The fact that this particular tree satisfies the requirements for both softwood and hardwood classifications makes it rare for a softwood.

The tree is undoubtedly a conifer because it has needles and makes cones, but it is also categorized as a deciduous tree because it sheds its needles in a manner akin to how other trees lose their leaves in the fall. It is regarded as one of the toughest and hardest softwoods. Given that it belongs to the Cypress family of trees, it has many traits in common with its Redwood and Cedar relatives.

Tamarack types of wood are a great option for outdoor projects because it often has a reddish brown color and is pest and rot-resistant. When working with the wood, its straight grain and hardness can make it more prone to splintering and chipping. It is crucial to remember that this wood may induce irritation or allergic sensitivity, as is typical with trees in the Cypress family. For some people, the resins and oils of the plants that give it its favorable rot resistance might occasionally create problems.

Due to this, these woods should normally only be used in applications where skin won’t be in contact with them for an extended period of time. When dealing with these woods, you should take steps to prevent irritation from sawdust inhalation and use gloves to prevent skin contact with the wood’s oils and resins.

Read more: Types of woodworking hand and portable tools

Luan (also spelled Lauan)

The wood of Shorea trees, which are native to the Philippines and other Southeast Asian nations, is used to make the plywood known as lian. A flowering species of the Shorea family is the Lauan tree. Although essentially a hardwood, we are more likely to come across the material in artificially produced forms like plywood. Only extremely thin pieces of this plywood, usually 1/8th or 1/4th of an inch thick, are typically accessible. The typical size is a large 4′ x 8′ sheet, though some shops can have smaller pre-cut pieces.

This wood can bend easily and is quite flexible. This endows it with a special quality that can be quite advantageous when creating miniatures and models. It is also well-liked for use in other crafts and hobbies because it is portable, reasonably priced, and readily available. Although this is frequently done more for “looks” than for actual use, lian is occasionally utilized in a similar fashion to how hardboard is used to offer some support or a faux back to bigger furniture items.

It’s important to remember that luan shouldn’t be used for applications where it would be put under a significant amount of stress or where structural strength is required because of its inclination to bend and the fact that it comes in a very thin piece. Although lian is commonly referred to as “Philippine Mahogany,” it’s vital to understand that it actually has little in common with the real deal, which we’ll discuss next.


Mahogany is a stunning tropical hardwood that is prized for use in furniture construction. Often, the wood has a pinkish tone to begin with, which will deepen and darken with time. This wood is simple to work with and takes stain wonderfully; frequently, only a light application of oil is required. Mahogany is the softest of all the hardwoods, making it less demanding on your equipment. Due to its ability to generate a clear tone acoustically, Mahogany is also used by many producers of musical instruments in the creation of guitars and pianos.

Mahogany wood can be expensive to buy and difficult to locate because it is often imported from South and Central America. The term “Tropical Mahogany” refers to these kinds. Make sure the wood you use is produced sustainably if you decide to utilize mahogany for a project. Sadly, when it is not obtained from sustainable sources, the demand for this wood frequently results in significant deforestation.

There are additional Mahogany varieties. You might come across Australian Mahogany, which has similar qualities but is totally different because it comes from the Eucalyptus family of plants. Philippine Mahogany is likewise quite unique and is typically regarded as a very “cheap” sort of wood, similar to Luan.


Read more: Types of metals and their properties


Beautiful maple types of wood are frequently utilized in projects where the wood’s natural grain can be seen. The majority of maple trees are cultivated in healthy North American woods. There are numerous distinct species of maple trees, but while shopping for maple, you may have noticed there are only two fundamental options: soft or hard. Soft maple normally comes from Red Maple trees, whereas hard maple comes from the Sugar Maple tree.

The best wood to use for woodworking is typically red maple, also known as soft maple because it is considerably softer on the tools. Hard maple, often known as sugar maple, can be challenging to deal with and cut. Sugar Maple is a highly well-liked option for hardwood flooring due to its hardness. This type of maple can withstand being walked on and supporting furniture without developing any dents or scuffs.


MDF: Medium Density Fiberboard

Another engineered wood product that resembles HDF, or high-density fiberboard, but has a lower overall density is medium density fiberboard or MDF. MDF is more suited than Hardboard for a variety of uses because of the differences in fiber density. MDF, for instance, has better acoustic and insulating qualities, hence it is occasionally employed in situations where those qualities are needed, like the interior of a speaker.

MDF is generally not a product that should be used in woodworking. It can be challenging to work with, and many people are worried about the toxins that engineered wood products, notable formaldehyde, may leech into the environment. MDF is one of those things you should be aware of in case you run into it, but generally speaking, you should avoid using it if you can.


One of the most popular types of hardwood, oak is frequently used by woodworkers to create furniture and fine heirloom items that can last for many years. White oak and red oak are the two main kinds of oak wood that you may come across. The most common type of oak seen in most lumber stores is red oak, which has a stronger reddish undertone to its appearance. Red oak is a little softer than white oak, which makes construction with it a little bit simpler.

White oak is an extremely durable timber that makes a great option for flooring. Oak can be utilized outdoors if properly treated and sealed because it is also resistant to rot and deterioration. When working with oak, it is crucial to understand that it must first become accustomed to your workshop. It is vital to keep in mind that oak is prone to swelling and shrinkage depending on the temperature and moisture levels, especially when utilizing it for flooring or for building containers like wooden buckets that would store water.

Oak is a fantastic material for many various stained treatments since it is simple to stain. Although most woodworkers would agree that painting oak would be a waste if you intend to paint over and hide the lovely natural wood grain, you may also paint other sturdy woods that are less expensive.

Read more: What are the metal materials used in electric cars?

Oriented Strand Board (OSB)

As an alternative to plywood, Oriented Strand Board, or OSB as it is more frequently known, is a form of engineered wood product. In order to combine with resin and undergo a thermal heating process, wood strands are organized in a cross-hatched pattern. The boards have a highly distinct texture, but they are often homogeneous in size and thickness. Though the grain of the wood strands will be difficult to hide, OSB is frequently painted.

Oftentimes, OSB is significantly less expensive than plywood. Because of this, OSB is frequently used in newly built residential homes. Sheathing for floors, walls, and roofs is frequently used. OSB is additionally utilized to make inexpensive laminate furniture. The OSB is typically coated with a veneer in these situations. It is only possible to identify OSB in locations where the end grain is apparent, like in the sample photo presented above.

Even though these furniture items are less expensive, they are unquestionable of worse quality than those made of real wood. Poorly built laminate furniture made of OSB can entirely collapse with just one tap of a hammer. Because of this, the majority of woodworkers would never use it to make furniture, preferring to use actual wood. While OSB is never the first option for fine woodworking, it is undoubtedly practical and affordable for a variety of utility uses.



Pine is an extremely popular and adaptable softwood with many real-world uses. Pine is frequently chosen for a variety of applications because it is seen as being affordable, sustainable, and durable. In sustainable forestry practices, which involve planting more trees each year than are ever removed, the majority of pine trees grow very tall and swiftly.

There are numerous species of pine, and each one has unique qualities. As its name suggests, Southern Yellow Pine may have a more yellowish color than White Pine or Sugar Pine. Clear pine is another name for White Pine, Sugar Pine, and other related species. Pine can either be painted, stained, or left unfinished with a clear coat of protectant sealant. As long as you properly prepare the wood beforehand, pine responds quite well to staining a broad variety of hues and tones.

Additionally, pine types of wood can occasionally be found in dimensional lumber advertised as “SPF lumber” and “White Wood,” which are both general designations. “Spruce, Pine, and Fir” is referred to as SPF. Unless it has been specially treated for use in outdoor applications, like pressure-treated timber, which is also described in this list of wood types, most pine is best suited for indoor use only.



Despite being created from genuine wood, plywood is a product of engineered wood. A veneer is adhered to and compressed into many layers to create plywood. There are many various wood finishes available for plywood, and most plywood has both a “good side” and a “rough side.”

Plywood is available in a range of thicknesses, with the sizes you are most likely to find in home improvement stores being quarter-inch, half-inch, and three-quarter-inch. Fir, pine, or spruce make up the majority of plywood used in buildings.

plywood types of wood

Read more: Understanding the common types of metal, their properties & uses

Pressure Treated Lumber

Typically, pressure-treated wood is composed of yellow Southern Pine that has undergone a chemical procedure to make it rot and pest resistant. SPF, an abbreviation for Spruce, Pine, and Fir, is a type of wood that is used to make some pressure-treated lumber. For the construction of decks, patios, porch railings, and other outdoor structures, pressure-treated lumber is frequently employed. It is frequently viable to utilize old pressure-treated wood for new construction projects since pressure-treated lumber resists rot.

Make sure you utilize either new wood or wood produced after 2005 if you do decide to use pressure-treated wood in your projects. In the past, pressure-treated lumber was extremely dangerous and even contained toxic heavy metals like arsenic. Although it’s normally advised that would only be used for objects that won’t come into touch with food, today’s wood is thankfully a lot safer. The safety of using pressure-treated lumber in raised garden beds for food production is a hotly debated topic.



Poplar types of wood are popular and reasonably priced hardwood that may be used for a variety of building projects and purposes. The wood has a very light hue, and it can even appear to be white. Poplar is frequently painted or utilized in areas where its wood grain is not visible because it does not have a particularly distinctive or necessarily appealing wood grain. Poplar is the most pliable of all the hardwoods, which makes it easy to work with but also makes it quite simple to nick or indent while doing so.

Poplar is less likely to move or distort. Because it is not the most attractive of woods, it is frequently used in furniture components that are hidden from views, such as drawer slides and the interiors of dresser frames. In addition to being used for many wood crafts, poplar is frequently utilized in model construction. The majority of lumber-selling establishments have it in stock, and hobby and craft shops that sell wood for crafts also carry it in smaller quantities.



Rosewood, which is frequently used in the manufacture of guitars, pianos, and other wooden musical instruments, is music to the ears of woodworkers. Rosewood is an exotic hardwood that frequently drives up the cost of well-known musical instruments. Rosewood from Brazil is typical, but it can also come from Asia or Madagascar. Many people may choose alternate woods for their projects because they are worried about the illegal logging and deforestation methods that may occur when harvesting rosewood.

A lot of people have reported experiencing irritation from rosewood, especially after being exposed to sawdust for an extended period of time. It is crucial to take the right wood safety precautions while working with rosewood.

rosewood log

SPF Lumber

Spruce, Pine, and Fir are all included in the term “SPF lumber,” which is how the abbreviation “SPF” came to be used and recognized. Although there are apparent distinctions to the well-trained eye, all of these woods are softwoods with similar qualities and traits. The most typical applications for SPF lumber are utility and interior building framing. Since timber is a commodity, the kind of wood you actually get as SPF frequently depends heavily on the supply and demand dynamics at the time. SPF is most effective when used for framing interior walls or for utility applications. Unless it is chemically changed and pressure treated, wood is typically unable to resist the rigorous conditions of external use.

SPF wood is typically utilized in situations when the wood won’t be visible or exposed, like when framing. Although this wood may normally be sanded flat to be painted, it is typically not the best material for staining due to the prevalence of blotchiness. SPF timber is typically quite affordable, but it can occasionally end up costing more in the long run when used for finer woodworking projects, particularly if you have to spend a lot of time preparing the wood for the item you want to make.

When buying SPF lumber, it’s also crucial to make an effort to buy from the same stack of wood all at once. This will enhance the likelihood that at least all of the wood you buy will be the same species and have the same properties. Because SPF lumber can occasionally be unpredictable, you should probably buy more than you think you’ll need when using it for woodworking. In order to prevent significant shrinking and swelling when making cuts and putting your products together, it’s crucial to give the wood enough time to adjust to the humidity and temperature of your shop.


Read more: Understanding metalworking


Spruce types of wood are evergreen softwood tree that is extensively used for construction framing projects. As previously indicated, it can be purchased in lumber yards as “SPF timber.” Due to its exceptionally light tone, spruce is occasionally marketed as “White Wood,”, especially in circumstances where there are significant home improvement retail chains. The grain is smooth and straight.

Spruce can have great acoustic qualities that make it attractive for the building of musical instruments like pianos, guitars, and other string instruments when allowed the wood to reach its full maturity. Spruce has traditionally been used to construct boats and aircraft. The Wright Brothers used spruce to build their first airplane. Spruce is no longer frequently utilized for these purposes since it is prone to swelling and is not, particularly weather resistant.


The Asian jungles are habitat to the exotic hardwood teak. It takes a very long time for a tree to develop to maturity, taking an average of 60 years before it can be harvested. Although there are more environmentally friendly forestry practices in use now than there were decades ago, teak will always be a hard-to-find wood that costs a lot of money because of its lengthy growing process.

Originally, teak was most frequently used for boat construction, and it is still a favorite among those who make maritime crafts today. Additionally, it is often used in high-end outdoor furnishings, decking, and other outdoor applications. Teak has a naturally oily surface, which in some cases can make it challenging to dye or glue. Due to the wood’s high hardness, working with it may require more frequent sharpening and blade replacement.

Many people would describe the smell of teak as being very distinctive and earthy. Teak should not be used for any application that would have prolonged and direct contact with food or skin since many people can be particularly sensitive to the naturally occurring oils in teak. Additionally, it is advisable to use gloves and a dust mask when dealing with teak. This will lessen any irritability you might feel while handling the wood. Avoid teak and opt for a more hypoallergenic wood for your projects if sensitivity or allergies are a problem for you.


Walnut is a type of hardwood that is most recognizable for its deep, rich brown hue. Although walnut is a wonderful wood to take into consideration for unique projects, it may be pricey and frequently only available through specialty lumber retailers. Although it is quite robust, walnut is comparatively easy to deal with. Although many people still pick maple or white oak and stain those woods to match the desired hue of walnut because they are slightly more durable, they can be used for hardwood floors.

Because of its fine texture, walnut polishes up pretty nicely and is an easy wood to maintain and color. It is popularly used for carving, routing, and as accent pieces for wooden furniture. Although it’s normal practice to dye less expensive wood to imitate a walnut color, walnut cabinets are still quite popular. Many people are also shocked to find that walnut is utilized in the construction of high-end luxury vehicles and firearms. Due to its extremely strong fibers, walnut wood can endure any shock or stress that it may encounter in applications like these.

Walnut is also frequently used in the manufacture of musical instruments like violins and guitars. Despite being one of the more expensive hardwoods, walnut is still far more affordable than other exotic hardwoods that are sought after for their ability to produce clear tones for musical instruments.

Read more: Different types of rolling mills and defects in rolled metal


Whitewood is a general term used to describe a wide range of different woods with similar properties in strength and color rather than a specific species or type of wood. The big box retailers use the word “whitewood” most frequently in order to have one SKU number for a variety of various kinds of wood dependent on availability. This wood can occasionally be Douglas fir, poplar, or pine.

Basically, you usually have no idea what kind of wood you might be buying if anything is marketed as “whitewood.” This kind of wood is frequently offered for sale as dimensional lumber and used in building and framing tasks. You might occasionally get some fantastic prices on woods like poplar and pine in the general “white wood” section if you learn how to distinguish different wood species, but you also need to be careful because occasionally the lower grades of fir are also offered as whitewood. In the realm of lumber, Whitewood is somewhat of like a “box of chocolates” since you never know what you might get.


Zebrawood types of wood come in a number of kinds, most of which are indigenous to Central Africa and Central America. The wood grain of this wood has a noticeable pattern of stripes. Due to the nature of its distinctive pattern, luxury furniture is where it is most frequently employed. It is a highly dense, hardwood that is occasionally challenging to deal with.

In the past, zebrawood was mostly used to make expensive, luxurious products. It is desirable for manufacturing in objects like cars, firearms, and other things that need to tolerate stress and vibration because of its density and hardness. Today, it is most frequently observed as a type of wood veneer used to add aesthetic accents to various furniture pieces. If you want to make sure your projects are environmentally friendly, you might want to look at other hardwood alternatives because there is a lot of concern about the sustainable and legal logging of this exotic wood.


It should be much simpler for you to select the appropriate wood for your project now that we’ve covered all of the available types and varieties of wood as well as many of their typical uses and qualities. There is the ideal wood out there for your project, whether you are building indoors or outside, creating a straightforward shelf, or manually carving a complex piece of art. Although there are many other types of wood, but with the above listed am sure you’ll be able to choose a suitable wood for your project.

I hope you learned a lot from the reading, if so, kindly share with others. Thanks for reading, see you around!