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Thread: Aspen wood

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2003
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    Farmington, New Mexico
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    Anyone have any experience with using aspen instead of pine or other woods for boxes?
    Nobody ruins my day without my permission, and I refuse to grant it...

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Danbury, CT
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    No, but it is in the Poplar family so I would think it is similar. Poplar is okay to use, has few knots, but is generally considered a junk wood and not oftem milled into boards. It is mostly logged for use in osb and as pulp for paper products. I think it would work fine, but you would want kiln dried lumber as poplar shrinks as it drys. It is easy to work with when green, but hardens as it drys and becomes harder to work with. If it is the cheapest thing you can get in your area, then I would say use it.
    Always question Conventional Wisdom.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Evansville, IN, USA
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    coyote . . .

    >any experience with using aspen . . .

    Aspen tends to be "fuzzy" when cut. Sharp, crisp small details are easier made w/ white pine.

    Poplar is the softest of the "hardwoods".
    It IS commonly used in making furniture.
    Most poplar IS milled into boards, but some of the finest is used for veneer.

    Poplar is a "fast growing" species, thus is harvested "early" for pulp and other "trash" uses.

    A super made of poplar w/ weight more than one on white pine.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Whitefield, Maine USA
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    I've got a few thousand feet of poplar boards drying in the barn. I'll probably make a few boxes out of it this year to see what they're like. No doubt heavier than pine, and a lot harder to work. I've been figuring on selling most of it. It's widely used as flooring and for trim and furniture making around here. It's a pretty white colored wood without a lot of noticeable grain.
    Dulcius ex asperis

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Berkey, OH, USA
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    1,487

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    Wow George, that's a lot of wood. I would build boxes with it too if I had that much. Can't beat the price!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Farmington, New Mexico
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    The reason I ask is that there's a sawmill and excelsior plant an hour away from me that has scrap pretty cheap. They manufacture erosion mats and rolls out of aspen. This is the quaking aspen variety. It might be adequate for mediums.
    Nobody ruins my day without my permission, and I refuse to grant it...

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Devils Lake, North Dakota
    Posts
    9,183

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    Aspen/Poplar like others said has long been
    considered "junk" wood. It's finished cost
    is higher than pine.

    It always surprises me when I see it sold at
    Menard's or Lowe's for a higher price that #2
    pine.

    Aspen sells for far less that Poplar for
    whatever reason. The last Menards flyer has
    1" x 8" x 6' for the following:

    Pine (#2 or better): $3.79

    Aspen: $11.28

    Poplar: $13.22

    Give it a go and let us know.

    I've heated my house in the early years
    with it exclusively due to the fact it
    was all that was available. Not a good
    choice for firewood to be sure.

    It tends to get "punky" quickly compared
    to other woods.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Worthington, Pennsylvania USA
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    I would consider the quaking aspen too soft of wood for making boxes but know that it is excellent for growing oyster mushrooms.
    Poplar wood is fine as long as kept out of water and kept out of weather.
    "Younz" have a great day, I will.

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