Wednesday, February 8, 2012

How to distinguish Red Oak vs. White Oak?

#1 Way to do this: read the sign over the stack in the store

#2 Color: Red Oak is red, with some white streaks.  White Oak has a yellowish grey tinge to it, with white streaks. 

#3 White Oak is heavier

#4 Now that we have all of the “DUH” answer out of the way, here is a neat trick.

Find a smoker.  They can blow smoke into the end grain of White Oak and it will travel down the veins and arteries of the wood.  I have had it travel up to 3 feet through White Oak.  Red Oak, the veins and arteries tend to be more clogged and I’ve never had it travel more than 5 inches.  So when you find the squirrely piece that really could be a little too heavy be Red or maybe too dark to be White, find a smoker.  This is a sure fire way to tell.  


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