: Redheart, described and defined
"Redheart" is just another name for... 1998.
by Professor Gene Wengert
My wife has a small business designing, making, and selling jigsaw puzzles made from a variety of hard woods. One of her most popular woods is called Redheart at the hardwood lumber dealers. We have been unable to learn anything about this wood (where it comes from, etc.). Can you give me a reference or two where I am most likely to be able to find out the information I am looking for?
Redheart is a term used for the heartwood of hickory. (It is always possible that the suppliers have a foreign wood that they have renamed.) If it is hickory, then it will be quite hard. You can always send me a sample (about the size of a cigarette package) for positive identification--no cost.
Professor Gene Wengert is Extension Specialist in Wood Processing at the Department of Forestry, University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Click on Wood Doctor Archives to peruse past answers.
If you would like to obtain a copy of "The Wood Doctor's Rx", visit the Wood Education and Resource Center Web site for more information.
The comments below were added after this Forum discussion was archived as a Knowledge Base article (add your comment).
Comment from contributor N:
I am sure that Professor Wengert's description for redheart is correct in areas of the US where the particular type of hickory he is describing is abundant, but I think the redheart wood that is used in the puzzles you are speaking of is most likely the same redheart that I am familiar with. Redheart is native to Central America with the botanical name Erythroxylon spp. In its finished form, as you are familiar with, it is naturally pale to dark red wood, which will deepen in color and turn more of a brown with age, depending on how it is finished and how much exposure it gets. When Redheart is freshly cut, it is a bright red color that darkens with exposure. The wood has a medium density and is not as hard as hickory, although it is quite hard with a straight and tight grain, so it finishes very nicely. Redheart's main downside to woodworkers is its tendency to burn easily.
Would you like to add information to this article?
Interested in writing or submitting an article?
Have a question about this article?
Have you reviewed the related Knowledge Base areas below?
KnowledgeBase: Lumber & Plywood: Wood Identification
KnowledgeBase: Wood Engineering: Wood Properties
KnowledgeBase: Knowledge Base
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in
any manner without permission of the Editor.
Review WOODWEB's Copyright Policy.
The editors, writers, and staff at WOODWEB try to promote safe practices.
What is safe for one woodworker under certain conditions may not be safe
for others in different circumstances. Readers should undertake the use
of materials and methods discussed at WOODWEB after considerate evaluation,
and at their own risk.
335 Bedell Road
Montrose, PA 18801
Copyright © 1996-2013 - WOODWEB ® Inc.