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What color was that wood?
By Al Miotke


A trip to the hardwood store is always an enjoyable experience for woodworkers. Walking down the aisles and looking at the racks full of freshly cut, bright colored woods from around the world is like a kid in a candy store. You’ll likely see the reddish-orange of padauk, the bright yellow of osage orange, or the striking purple of purpleheart, to name just a few of the hundreds of species commercially available. Possibly you will even see a pallet of new lumber you have not seen before. The colors and grain patterns of many of these woods are compelling. They make you want to open your wallet to make a purchase for your next project. It’s too bad that many of those colors are just an illusion. Oh, the color is real, but like a freshly picked berry, you better enjoy it now. The reddish-orange of padauk will quickly turn a very dark brown, the yellow of osage orange will become a light brown, the purpleheart will slowly be transformed into a very deep purple that from a distance might look almost black.  So what causes this change and what can you do about it?  The answers to these questions should have a significant impact on the woods you choose for your next project.


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Purchase the Entire Magazine Edition
The project above was published in the December 2015 edition of the magazine. You may purchase the entire magazine edition by clicking on the "Purchase this edition" tab below. Here is a partial list of this edition's contents:

Star Ornament
by Denny Wetter

Making a Sea Urchin Ornament
by Ken Brinker

The Pen Turner's Corner: Casting Tutorial Wrap-up
by Don Ward

Make Your Own Lathe Mounted Sanding Disc
by David Reed Smith

On the Lighter Side: Frivolous Fun
by Bob Heltman

Product Review:
Pro-Rail Hollowing System

by: Tobin Hill Turning Studio