Cabinet Wood Choices
There are many wood species to choose from when looking for the right choice for your cabinets. Below are some brief descriptions of the more popular cabinet wood species you can choose from.
Red Oak: Red Oak is the most used wood in the manufacturing of cabinets and fine furniture and is considered the standard of wooden products. Red oak is a very strong, open-grained wood that ranges in color from salmon-pink to almost white. Occasional pin knots and mineral streaks are also characteristic. This abundant species is a strong hardwood with high shock resistance.
Quarter Sawn Oak: Logs are cut in fourths (like cutting a round cake) and then boards are cut at right angles to the growth rings. There are two main reasons to prefer quarter sawn boards for your cabinetry: 1.greater stability of form and size (less warping; and shrinkage). 2. for decorative effect. Quarter sawn oak can show a prominent ray fleck.
Maple: Selected for smooth texture, this hardwood is selected for uniform grain and characteristic light color. Predominantly creamy white color may have some color variation from white to a light gray or tan. Random mineral streaks, worm tracks and occasional birds-eye patterns are characteristic. Maple will slightly mellow with age. Due to the density and hardness of this species, natural expansion and contraction may be more apparent at joints. This is a hard, strong wood with excellent shock resistance.
Hickory: Hickory is a very strong, close-grained wood that is known to have wide variations in colors. These color variations will range from white to chocolate brown. Hickory wood is often used as an alternative to oak for consumers who prefer an open-grained wood, but have tired of the traditional oak look. Hickory, with its extreme strength and flexibility, is used often in the manufacturing of ax handles and other products where strength is desired.
Rustic Hickory: Rustic Hickory will have open and closed knots of all sizes and can include see-through knots or other imperfections and may include exaggerated graining. Stronger color variations from dark to light may occur. While it retains the features of hickory wood, it evokes an “Old World” feel.
Cherry: Smooth texture, rich color and flowing grain patterns are characteristic of this strong, high shock resistant, moderately hard species. Small gum spots, pin holes, pitch pockets and mineral flecks are characteristic. In a “natural” finish the color may range from nearly white to pink to dark brown, however this species stains well and will gradually darken with age.
Rustic Cherry: While it retains the rich look and characteristics of cherry wood,this wood will have a rustic nature of it. It will have open and closed knots of all sizes and can include see-through knots or other imperfections and may include exaggerated graining. Stronger color variations from dark to light may occur.