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Author Topic: Question for all of the wood workers  (Read 962 times)
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« on: January 20, 2011, 12:54:53 AM »

I have a chance to pick up some coffee tree lumber that I want to use for cabinets and frames.  I am told that it looks like red oak.  Does anyone know anything about this wood?  I have never worked with it and I'm looking for something different than the usual oak, cherry, walnut, etc..

Dennis Watson
Scotts, Michigan
1966 MCI MC5A
Spicer 4 Speed Manual
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« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2011, 06:16:03 AM »

Kentucky coffee wood looks to me something between ash and oak nice wood if you can afford it hand rub the finish and be careful with sanding use 320 and it will be a work of art,don't screw the wood up or the man will get u lol fwiw it was used for old grandfather type clocks made back in the 1800's a Amish guy told me it was because of the sound I didn't know what sound he was talking about and not wanting to sound dumb I didn't ask

good luck
« Last Edit: January 20, 2011, 06:24:17 AM by luvrbus » Logged

Life is short drink the good wine first
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1979 MCI MC5Cs 6V-71 644MT Allison, Roseville, CA

« Reply #2 on: January 20, 2011, 11:31:53 AM »

Some woods reflect the sound and others absorb it. n Guitar making Ash is used a lot because of the sound reflextion. Oak would be good or cabinets but bad for sound, it is just to solid and can split if to dry.


My personal skills are fine.. itís my tolerance to idiots that needs work!....

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« Reply #3 on: January 20, 2011, 01:58:06 PM »

I'm not familiar with it, but take a look at this website  http://www.hobbithouseinc.com/personal/woodpics/coffee%20tree.htm and this one http://www.woodweb.com/knowledge_base/Kentucky_Coffeetree_Lumber_Characteristics.html .  The pictures show a variety of colors, some almost look like a cross between oak and canarywood, or some almost between oak and walnut.  The postings seem to indicate that it's pretty hard, so make sure your tools are sharp.

All in all, it looks like you may have a good find - but it depends on the color(s) you're looking for in the wood.  Perhaps pick up a few feet, play with it, and try various finishes.  Personally, I'm fond of General Finishes Arm-R-Seal.  That's what I used on the cherry/walnut dining table for the 4107, and on the maple/walnut church podium I built last year.  I normally use it over a coat of blond shellac on lighter woods (such as maple), orange shellac over walnut. 


Arthur Gaudet    Carrollton (Dallas area) Texas 
1968 PD-4107

Working in the bus industry provides us a great opportunity - to be of service to others
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