Friday, November 6, 2009

Hardwood Lumber

Are you a cabinet maker, craftsperson, furniture builder, or artisan using rough hardwood lumber? If so, would you like to receive our monthly listing of rough lumber availabilities? Just send an email to and we'll put you on our list!

(S2S and S3S is also available)

Monday, October 19, 2009

Wightman Open House Update

Though it was an overcast and somewhat cool day last Saturday, the show went on here in Portlandville, NY for our Annual Open House. We had a great turn out for the event and everyone who attended seemed to enjoy their time here.

As in previous years, the main event for the day was the tours through our plant. Visitors were taken through each step of our manufacturing process to learn how our solid wood materials are made. From bringing logs to our facility to milling lumber into finished materials, visitors were able to see up close how each part of our operation functions on a daily basis.

The newest feature on our tour was our new double-cut band head saw located in our sawmill. After many months of preparation, installation and troubleshooting, we were very proud to show off this latest improvement to our plant - a sign that we are always moving forward and thinking of the future.

Our newly formatted woodworking event for this year was a huge success! Through our silent auction, our bidders raised over $1,800 to benefit the Ronald McDonald House of Albany and Springbrook of Oneonta. Talented woodworkers who contributed the beautiful pieces for this event also realized nearly $1,000 in proceeds.

Habitat for Humanity raised money for their ongoing projects through the sale of refreshments - the hot coffee and other goodies were much appreciated by everyone on such a cold day!

CNC router demonstrations conducted by Dan West of West WoodWorks provided many interested learners a great look into the functioning of CNC technology. Many attendees even purchased signs of their own created by Dan that day, and several individuals expressed interest in Dan's upcoming woodworking classes. (To learn more, contact Dan at

The children's activity was a big hit with all the kids who were very excited to build their own toy race car. A special thank you to Mary Peterson from Amazable Science Adventures for leading this fun family event!

Finally, "Just Throw Money" provided great live music and entertainment for everyone throughout the day - thank you to the musicians.

All in all, we at Wightman Specialty Woods enjoyed spending the day with those of you who were able to attend our Open House this year, and we look forward to another successful event in 2010!

If you missed our event and are interested in taking a tour of our facility, feel free to stop in any day, or click here to take our virtual tour!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Profile: Woodworker and Teacher: Dan West

West WoodWorks
Cherry Valley, New York

With a Bachelor's degree in Industrial Arts and Technology and a Masters in Education, Dan West began his career as a woodworking teacher at Oppenheim Ephratah Central School over 20 years ago. After completing 16 years in teaching, Dan entered the agriculture industry under the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), and the New York State Department of Labor. For 9 years he traveled throughout the Northeastern United States teaching machinery safety programs, while also authoring a number of articles for national magazines and various publications about safe operation and maintenance of agriculture equipment.

Throughout his teaching career Dan always maintained woodworking as a hobby. Five years ago he made the decision to turn this hobby into a business and West WoodWorks was born. Using local wood materials, Dan designs and custom crafts each piece to fit his customers specifications, from simple benches to intricate armoires.

Being a teacher all his life, it was natural for Dan to develop an educational component to West WoodWorks. Two years ago he began offering a monthly class in his woodworking shop. Course topics varied from requests by individuals to subjects Dan thought students would find interesting. The response from both beginning woodworkers and "do it yourselfers" to more advanced students was so successful that Dan expanded the number of class offerings and began developing "series" courses in which students were taken through a progression of classes relating to a particular topic.

Currently, Dan is in the process of shaping these educational services into a woodworking school. To be known as the "Leatherstocking Region School of Woodworking", the formalized program will allow Dan to instruct students on professional quality machinery and enable learners to operate equipment and build pieces of their own.

In addition to forming his woodworking school, Dan continues to improve his services at West WoodWorks. His latest acquisition is a Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) router. Dan uses this tabletop router to create custom wood signs. The router fits a piece of wood 1 foot wide by 2 feet long. Dan types his sign into a computer program (similar to a word processing program) and chooses the size and style of the lettering. He then imports this information into the automated router and the sign is cut.
CNC technology, like Dan's router, offers woodworkers the ability to automate woodworking equipment through the use of computers. Woodworkers enter their design into a computer program, which translates the information and sends motion instructions to automated woodworking equipment. The woodworking equipment then generates the woodworkers design into a functional piece. This technology gives woodworkers the ability to create accurate and detailed pieces in a short amount of time. CNC is also popular in shops where precise and often repeated patterns must be created - cabinet shops are a good example. A cabinet maker will load specifications into CNC equipment to cut all parts for the cabinet from large pieces of wood or plywood. This ensures accurately cut, repeated parts in a short amount of time, with minimal waste.

If you are interested in seeing how CNC technology works, and meeting Dan of West WoodWorks, stop in to Wightman's Annual Open House on Saturday October 10th. Dan will be demonstrating his CNC router throughout the day and answering any questions about CNC technology, West WoodWorks, or any general questions about his life-long pursuits: teaching and woodworking! To learn more about West WoodWorks and Dan West please visit:
West WoodWorks, or contact Dan at, 607.264.3217.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Woodworking event!

Just a reminder that our Annual Open House woodworking event is coming up on October 10th!

This year’s event will be a silent auction in which individual bidders will be able to purchase the entries submitted to the event by the woodworkers. The proceeds from the auction will be split between the woodworker, the Ronald McDonald House of Albany, and Springbrook of Oneonta. (Wightman Specialty Woods will not be keeping any portion of the auction proceeds).

This event offers a great opportunity for woodworkers to promote their work, earn some extra dollars, and also donate to 2 wonderful charities.

Please visit to view all information about the event and submit your entry!

We look forward to seeing you in October!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Project Profile: Thames Street Landing, Bristol, RI

Nestled on Narragansett Bay in the heart of New England sits the small town of Bristol, Rhode Island. Recently awarded by the National Trust for Historic Preservation as a "Vacation Destination for 2009", Bristol is known for its peaceful charm, friendly residents, and famous 4th of July celebration (Main Street is even decorated year round with a red, white and blue center stripe).
Located in the waterfront Historic District of Bristol is Thames Street Landing. This mixed-use property consists of a boutique-style Inn, shops and restaurants, and combines the amenities of today with the site's important historical significance.
Constructed in the 1800's, the waterfront location originally served as a shipping and receiving site. During the devastating hurricane that struck the New England region in 1938, much of the waterfront and surrounding buildings were severely damaged - even to this day, a stone building on the property displays a permanent '"dent" where it was struck by a large ship during the storm.
In the years following the hurricane the waterfront was home to various businesses, including a lumber yard, quahog processing plant, and bank, however, the area gradually deteriorated and was left abandoned.
Over the last 7-10 years the site has undergone a tremendous revitalization that has transformed the waterfront into a functional and enjoyable area. To preserve its connection with the past, the property was constructed using traditional materials. Slate floorings, woodwork, and natural stone materials all complement the interior and exterior of the property. Wightman Specialty Woods has been proud to provide many custom mouldings specifically designed to maintain historical accuracy, as well as Red Oak materials that skilled carpenters have used to create much of the interior millwork for the Inn and restaurants.

The restoration and redevelopment of this beautiful waterfront property has allowed both town residents and travelers to appreciate and enjoy the essence of Bristol - a quintessential New England town.
To learn more, please visit:

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Middleburgh High School, Materials Processing projects

Project Profile: Middleburgh High School, Materials Processing class

In a time where computers, iPhones, and Facebook seem to have become the most popular forms of expression, in Middleburgh, New York, the time honored tradition of working with natural materials lives strong.

At Middleburgh High School, students in Dave Dickerson’s “Materials Processing” class are hard at work studying and practicing the fundamental principals of woodworking. Although they began in Middle School creating small woodworking projects and learning how to use some of the equipment in Dickerson’s shop (including band saws and sanding machines) for the majority of students in the class this is their first hands on woodworking course. Dickerson limits Materials Processing to 15 individuals in order to maintain an independent study type teaching experience with each student.

The young woodworkers are responsible for selecting their own projects. After reviewing plan books for ideas, each student works closely with Dickerson to choose a project that is within the range of their ability and also incorporates the latest methods in woodworking. The process then begins: Each week Dickerson has the students develop a list of tasks to be completed on their pieces. This allows students to act as their own project managers by developing a well thought out strategy for completing their designs, and also allows Dickerson to run the class efficiently by scheduling in advance machine set-ups and extra time for students who may require assistance.

At the end of each year, the Materials Processing student’s final projects are featured at the Middleburgh Central School “Technopalooza”. This annual event organized by the Middleburgh Central School Technology Department includes presentations, exhibits and competitions with student work produced throughout the year. This year’s event also featured an Antique and Custom Car show.

It is clear in talking with Dickerson that he and Middleburgh School are passionate about their technology program, recognizing that it challenges students while also teaching them many valuable and life long skills.
We at Wightman Specialty Woods are proud to be able to support this program through use of our wood materials, and commend these talented students for the time and hard work they have put into creating these beautiful pieces.

To learn more about Middleburgh Central School, the MCS Technology Department, and this years “Technopalooza” please visit:,

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Project Profile

Habitat for Humanity of Greater Newburgh, New York

Office space and ReStore

When Habitat for Humanity of Greater Newburgh needed new office space, they could have built from scratch, or just added a bit of paint and spackle to an existing space. The organization decided instead to preserve a 150-year legacy.

The Kimball Building in downtown Newburgh, N.Y., was a 13,000 square foot industrial-grade building. Erected in 1852, the facility originally housed a foundry that made metal castings, steam pipes and manhole covers. In the 1930's the building was converted to an auto mechanic machine shop and recently, it served as an electrical contractor's business and roofing company. The facility was anything but office and retail space, but it was part of downtown Newburgh.

Just as Habitat has restored dozens of homes to help rebuild Newburgh, they decided to restore the Kimball Building. In 2008, Habitat called in Wightman Specialty Woods to create the wood flooring for 5,000 square feet of the historic building.

It was a complex task, but as well worth the effort as any Habitat home restoration.

Wightman Specialty Woods manufactured Custom Joined #1 Soft Maple flooring to accommodate the office spaces, conference facility and ReStore for the building (The ReStore is a building materials recycling and resale facility open to the public). Using the architect's floor plan, we created a specific layout for each space and implemented a color coding system in which all custom-joined flooring packs were marked and designated a specific area for installation.

The color coding system allowed Habitat's volunteers and employees to quickly and easily install the flooring themselves, saving a great deal of time and expense. Habitat has occupied the space since October 2008.

What a great example of good, efficient work! Recycle and re-purpose an old building to function as not only a work space for an organization whose mission is to rebuild communities, but also to serve as a local source for recycled building materials. We hope they continue to serve the greater Newburgh community for many decades to come. For more information, visit Habitat for Humanity of Greater Newburgh.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Our Website, Brochure Receive Design Honors

We are very proud to announce that our new website and brochure received honors in the 19th annual Genesis Awards.

Our website won First Place in the category of World Wide Web, and our brochure won Second Place in the category of Brochures/Catalogs.

The Communications Association of the Southern Tier sponsors the awards. You can see the full list of winners on the organization's website.

We would also like to thank our friends at GrafiQa Creative Services, who produced the piece.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Installation of new head band saw

Over the last several months we have been busy preparing our sawmill for the installation of a state-of-the-art, double-cut band head saw. The saw itself was installed last week, and the project is scheduled for final completion by the end of May. We'd like to share with you more about how this new equipment will improve our operations and how we accomplished its installation.

Improved technology: Circular saws vs. Band saws
(First image: Circular saw , Second image: Band saw)

In a sawmill, the "head saw" refers to the sawing equipment responsible for making the initial cuts in a log.

As opposed to the circular head saw we had in operation for decades, this new piece of equipment is a band saw. The difference between the two is a circular saw rotates in a circular cutting motion, similar to a table saw. A band saw consists of a continuous band of metal with teeth along one or two edges (our new saw has teeth along both edges). The metal band rides on two wheels which rotate in the same plane. While some mills still use circular head saws, they are somewhat outdated and offer fewer capabilities compared to band saws.
Increased capabilities and efficiencies this band saw offers include:
* Ability to saw larger logs - up to 42" diameter
* Ability to cut logs in both directions (forward and reverse) as they pass by the saw on our log carriage - increasing efficiency
* Ability to produce more Quarter Sawn materials
* Ability to decrease the load on our existing, downstream band saw by
transferring some of the cutting to the new band saw
* One half the saw kerf as the circular head saw, resulting in more lumber, less waste, and less power consumption. The new band saw has a saw kerf of .13", as opposed to the circular saw which has a saw kerf of .25".
Preparation of the site:
The preparation of our sawmill involved demolition work and the relocation of all saw maintenance operations (sharpening and leveling). As our saws require routine maintenance every 4 hours each day, relocating these activities to an area directly above our sawing facility allows our maintenance crew to perform its job with greater ease and efficiency.

Installation day:
A hole large enough to accommodate the saw was cut in the roof of our new sawmill building. This allowed for the saw to be lifted up over the building and placed down into the head saw location. (Our head saw is actually located in the center of the building, therefore transporting the saw in through the doors or side of the building was not feasible). To lift the 17,000 pound saw up and into place, a 100 ton crane was required. The entire process was completed quite smoothly in approximately 3 hours. We expect to have the new saw running by the end of May, and hope to have any glitches worked out by early July.

If you have not yet visited our plant, please feel free to stop in for a tour or take our online virtual tour!

Installation pictures:
1. Crane lifting band saw
2. Band saw in position over roof
3. Band saw in place in sawmill

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Catskill Woodnet and New York State Forest Products Industry

Through the Catskill WoodNet, Wightman Specialty Woods and a number of Catskill area businesses recently exhibited at the Architectural Digest Home Design Show. The goal of our display was to raise awareness and educate show attendees about the role of Catskill WoodNet and the importance of the forest products industry in New York State. Here we take the opportunity to pass along our message.

The Catskill WoodNet is a regional network of businesses that harvest and manufacture wood products from New York's Catskill Mountain Region. Comprised of woodworkers, artisans and sawmills, the goal of our diverse group is to encourage and promote a working landscape that connects people with local forest resources.

For centuries there has been an intimate connection between the people and the forests in the Catskill region. Early farmhouses and barns were framed and planked with hemlock lumber, and their floors and millwork made from oak, maple, or white pine. From baseball bats in Cooperstown to rustic garden settees in Woodstock, roughly 1,500 jobs depend on the wise-use of Catskill forests to support the local wood products industry.

Preservation and responsible management of the Catskill forest lands is particularly important as our region is the primary source of water for New York City. The Catskill/Delaware system of the NYC Watershed covers 1,584 square-miles and provides clean drinking water to over 10 million New York City homes and communities. 90% of New York City's water originates in the Catskills where forests provide a natural buffer to protect the superior water quality in the streams and reservoirs. The remaining 10% of water comes from a suburban watershed east of the Hudson River, however, this water must be filtered to be fit for human use.

The wood products industry is not only important to our local Catskill region, but also to the entire State of New York. The land area of New York State is 30.22 million acres. Today, 61% (18.46 million acres) of this land is forested, which is remarkable considering just 80 years ago New York contained only half this area of forest.

The entire state has benefited immensely from this unprecedented and dramatic reforestation, while at the same time maintaining a diversity of landscape amenities such as farms, water, and other open spaces. The annual contribution of forest-based manufacturing and forest-related recreation and tourism to the New York economy is over $8.8 billion. The forest-based manufacturing industry, forestry and logging provides employment for 57,200 people and generates a payroll of over $2.1 billion, while Forest-based recreation and tourism provides employment for over 14,600 and generates payrolls of $300 million.

The forest products industry in New York is comprised of a diverse group of businesses ranging from pulp and paper mills, sawmills, engineered panel plants, biomass energy plants, secondary manufacturing in the furniture and related business as well as the logging and trucking contractors who deliver the raw materials to market.

The majority of timberland, roughly 90%, in New York is privately owned by business concerns or family forest owners. This places a great responsibility on our land owners to manage their forests, a practice which landowners take seriously. In the Catskill region alone, landowners are practicing forestry under the guidance of a long-term forest stewardship plan at over 5 times the national average for regions of similar size. Through careful planning with Watershed Qualified Foresters, Catskill landowners manage their forestland as part of a working landscape providing raw materials to local mills that supply lumber to area carpenters and cabinet shops. It is a strong economic model for a sustainable working landscape: local landowners providing raw materials to local wood products manufacturers that create jobs for local people.

To learn more about the Catskill WoodNet and members of our group, please visit, and next time you find yourself searching for wood products, look for the Pure Catskills trademark of the Catskill WoodNet illustrating a commitment to using watershed friendly practices, buying local and supporting a centuries old tradition of craftsmanship and care for the land in the Catskills.

Catskill Woodnet

Watershed Argicultural Council

SUNY College of Environmental Science & Forestry Report on Forestland Parcelization in the NYC Watershed

NYS Department of Enviromental Conservation

The Economic Importance and Wood Flows from New York's Forest, 2007

New: The Woodworker's Corner!

We have created this new section of our website specifically with our woodworkers in mind.

Whether you have been an avid woodworker for years, or just enjoy doing small projects on the weekends, our online woodworking community is a place where you may exchange ideas, questions, photos, and videos with others who share your passion for working with wood.

To learn more or join our online community click here.

At the Woodworker's Corner you may also learn more about the rough hardwood lumber materials we at Wightman's are able to provide in Mini and Small Lot Wholesale quantities (availabilities are updated monthly). Click here to visit our new Woodworker's Corner!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Architectural Digest Home Design Show

In conjunction with the Catskill WoodNet, Wightman Specialty Woods and several other Catskill area wood product businesses, will be exhibiting at the Architectural Digest Home Design Show!

The Catskill WoodNet is a regional network of businesses that havest and manufacture wood products from New York State's Catskill Mountain Region.

Show information:

Dates: March 26 - 29, 2009
Location: Pier 94, 12th Avenue at 55th Street, New York, NY
Hours: 10:00am - 6:00pm
Booth: #G301

Take our Guided Virtual Tour!

Our online virtual tour is now complete with voiceovers that will guide you through our plant.

Please visit to begin your tour.

Friday, March 13, 2009

New! Classic Quarter/Rift Sawn Pine Flooring

Our New Eastern White Pine flooring features:

*A Quarter/Rift Sawn mix: this classic sawing technique provides enhanced dimensional stability to the wood, and beautiful straight grain patterning.
*Relief on the back: this prevents squeaking and facilitates air flow underneath the floor which allows the wood to breathe.

New! Stair Treads

Wightman Specialty Woods is now stocking Stair Treads!

Oak Stair Treads5/4 x 12
3' and 4' lengths
Square Ends

Other species are available on request.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Wightman Specialty Woods in Hudson Valley Builders Trade Show!

Be sure to stop by and see us at the Hudson Valley Builders Association Trade Show Wednesday, February 25th! We will be featuring 2 new products in addition to our stock materials.

Anthony's Pier 9
2975 Route 9W South
New Windsor, New York
Booth #64

One Day Only!
Wednesday February 25th
2:00 - 7:30pm

For more information visit

Monday, February 2, 2009

Wightman Specialty Woods at The Great Northeast Home Show

Be sure to stop by and see us at the Great Northeast Home Show this coming weekend, February 6 -8th! We will be featuring 2 new products in addition to our stock materials.

Empire State Plaza Convention Center
Albany, New York
Booth #214

Friday 4:00 - 9:00pm
Saturday 10:00am - 7:00pm
Sunday 10:00am - 5:00pm

For more information visit

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Woodworking event!

Dear Woodworking Friends,

In preparation for our Annual Open House, October 2009, we would like to tell you about a new format we will be having for our woodworking event. This year, our woodworking event will be a combined silent auction in which woodworking pieces are submitted to our event, and each piece is auctioned off to individual bidders through a silent bidding process. The proceeds will be split between you, the woodworker, and The Ronald McDonald House of Albany. Wightman Specialty Woods will not keep any of the proceeds from the auction. The Ronald McDonald House is a wonderful charity that provides comfort and care to children and familes in need during difficult times.

All pieces must be made of wood except for joinery (hinges, etc) or handles. We will accept pieces of furniture, carvings, crafts, and miscellaneous woodworking pieces.

To learn more about this event please contact Naomi at 607.286.9201,

Happy Woodworking!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Winter Project: Radiant heating systems and Hardwood Floors

Radiant floor heating systems are becoming increasingly popular throughout the United States today. Radiant heating systems distribute heat "omni-directionally", or in all directions, offering greater energy efficiency than conventional forced air heating systems in which warm air naturally rises, resulting in warm ceilings but cold floors.

Installing a hardwood floor over radiant heat is not much different from laying a typical hardwood floor, as long as you understand radiant heat, how it can impact wood flooring, what precautions to take, and what type of wood flooring to use.

Understanding radiant heat: Radiant floor heating systems consist of tubing installed under the finished floor that is responsible for delivering heat through the floor and into the home.
Impact on wood flooring and precautions to take: One of the most important factors in a successful wood flooring installation over radiant heat is a dry slab and a dry subfloor. This is important in any wood floor installation, but particularly over radiant heat systems, because once the radiant heat is turned on, any excess moisture in either the concrete slab or subfloor will be directly transferred to the wood flooring. Any moisture entering a wood floor in this manner will cause severe problems to the floor (swelling, buckling). To ensure that all moisture is removed prior to the wood flooring installation, the radiant heating system should be turned on and run for an extended period of time (the National Wood Flooring Association recommends 5-6 days) to remove any residual moisture.

Choosing wood flooring: According to the National Wood Flooring Association, wood floors best suited for installation over radiant heat include engineered wood floors, solid woods that naturally have good dimensional stability, and solid wood floors that are no more than 4" in finished width.

Now that you are ready to install your radiant heating, here are a few ways to set up the system:

Direct Nail to Subfloor over Floor Joists:

A popular set-up in which radiant tubes are strapped onto a plywood subfloor laid over the floor joists. Wood flooring is then nailed to the plywood subfloor.
Note that a moisture barrier should always be placed over the subfloor to which the wood flooring is nailed. A good choice is #15 felt paper.

Direct Nail to Subfloor over Sleepers:

An approach used when you do not have access under the existing subfloor or when the underside of the floor cannot be used. Here the radiant tubes and sleepers are laid on top of the existing subfloor, and a second subfloor is added. Wood flooring is nailed to this second subfloor.

Solid T&G Floor Direct Nail to Sleepers:

This set-up involves laying sleepers over the subfloor and radiant tubes between the sleepers. A vapor barrier is installed over the sleepers and wood flooring is nailed directly to the sleepers. Some individuals also choose to put a gypsum or concrete mix around the radiant tubing, which provides fire resistance and sound dampening.

Single or Double Layer of Plywood on Sleepers:

Similar to the approach above, except a layer of plywood (or even 2 layers) is applied over the sleepers. The wood flooring is then nailed to the plywood.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Domestic Hardwoods and Softwoods

Whether you are planning to install a hardwood floor, replace the siding on your home, or begin your first craft project, at Wightman Specialty Woods our goal is to be a resource to help you select the best possible wood materials for the job.
Some of the most popular wood species come from right in our backyards here in the northeastern United States! Below we offer you some general information and best uses for these domestic hardwoods and softwoods.
Domestic Hardwoods

Red Oak

With its attractive open grain pattern and light brown/red hue, Red Oak has long been one of the most popular northeastern hardwoods. Known for its hardness and durability, Red Oak stains and finishes well and is a classic choice for flooring, furniture, cabinetry, and interior finishes including wainscot, mouldings and paneling.

Hard Maple

Hard Maple is the 'hardest' of the northeastern hardwoods (as measured by the Janka hardness test). With its closed, straight grain pattern, it is slightly more difficult to machine than other northeastern hardwoods. Maple is not very porous and does not accept stains well, however, it finishes quite nicely with polyurethanes. Hard Maple has excellent shock resistance making it the wood of choice for gymnasium floors. Hard Maple is also ideal for furniture, cabinets, and tabletops.

Cherry (American)

Not to be confused with Brazilian Cherry, which has a much higher hardness level, American Cherry is one of the softer northeastern hardwood species. Cherry has a rich reddish color that will darken over time and with exposure to sunlight. Cherry "sapwood" (which comes from the exterior portion of the tree) is creamy white in color. Cherry machines easily and finishes beautifully making it ideal for furniture, cabinetry, mouldings, flooring, turning, carving, and musical instruments.


Though considered a hardwood, Basswood is quite a light, soft wood. This softness along with its uniform texture and indistinct grain pattern make it the premier wood for carving. Basswood is also ideal for painted mouldings, as it machines well, is easy to work with hand tools, and readily accepts paint.

White Ash

With a similar open grain pattern to Red Oak, the coloring of White Ash has more variation, ranging from light white to streaks of grey and light brown. Ash machines well, is good in nailing, screwing and gluing and accepts stains very well. White Ash has a relatively high hardness level, which makes it ideal for furniture, flooring, and the wood specie of choice for baseball bats.

Domestic Softwoods

Eastern White Pine

A popular softwood in the northeast, Eastern white pine may be used in a wide variety of projects from simple shelving to intricate furniture pieces. Pine is easily workable with power and hand tools, and though it does not stain well (will be blotchy), Pine accepts paints very well. Eastern white pine often contains knots, which are appealing to those hoping to achieve a "rustic" look.


Though this softwood specie is indigenous to the southeastern United States, its weather resistant properties make it a natural fit for outdoor applications here in the northeast. Natural oils within Cypress make it resistant to decay, insect attack and seasonal climate changes. Cypress is easily workable and readily accepts finishes. Though it is an ideal solution for outdoor decks, pergolas and stairways, it can be equally beautiful indoors as flooring, wall and ceiling coverings.