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  1. #1
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    Default Identification please

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    Picked up some timber recently at a garage sale. Larger piece is tiger myrtle and think the small pieces are Australian cedar. It is the colour of Blackwood but very light with close growth rings (similar to huon pine) and no smell. Thought cedar would be lighter in colour than this. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks Wayne

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  3. #2
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    Could be Oregon. I picked up a heap from a demolished warehouse a few years ago and it looked very similar to that.


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    I'll second Oregon.

  5. #4
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    Thanks for the replies but from what I know of Oregon it should have a pine odour when cut and this has none. The weight is similar to that of king billy and growth rings on the end grain only 1mm apart. Will post a better picture tomorrow.
    Wayne

  6. #5
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    It looks very much like western red cedar but WRC is very light in weight and extremely soft.
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  7. #6
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    Aus Cedar has a lot of variety, from very pale, almost white, though yellows, pinks and reds up to a dark, chocolate brown. Similarly, the grain can be anywhere from fine, tight rings through to rings more expected from plantation radiata.

    It's variable enough that I've worked pieces that showed all of the above in one 3mx190x45 length!

    Quite soft - dingable with a firm thumbnail - and lightweight, though. It also has a distinctive aroma similar to, but not quite the same as, true Cedars. This can be very faint in some pieces, however.

    What you have does look very much like Douglas Fir or Oregon, esp. with the alternating ring colours. This isn't typical of Aus Cedar. And while you can tell a lot by the smell, the absence of scent doesn't automatically mean it is not <insert timber name here>. 'Cos sometimes it is...
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  8. #7
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  9. #8
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    Hi folks some more pics. The first is end grain with huon pine for comparison. The second has a long piece of red cedar and a short beam section of Oregon. Guess it is most likely to be an American species most probably red cedar. Thanks for your assistance guys.
    Cheers Wayne

  10. #9
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    Hi Wayne, it looks like Red Pine/California Redwood. Can vary from light orange-brown to deep red-brown. Often mistaken as other types of pines and cedars. Close annular rings common. Little, if no distinctive scent. The nicest stuff I've used has come from wide old skirting boards that were always painted thickly to hide grain. Lovely stuff. That's my best bet without seeing in person. Cheers, J

  11. #10
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    Skew has covered my thoughts pretty well. We had a lot of Douglas Fir, Canadian Hemlock, Oregon and Western Red Cedar come into Far North QLD in the late 1970's & early 1980's when Dad was building. Quite a few fabricated house frames and trusses were made from DF & CH. Oregon was very popular for formwork and shoring. WRC was used mostly for cladding.

    ARC would not have the resinous / pithy seasonal growth rings typical of the pines so they are present that should quickly eliminate ARC. Photos in post #7 seem to discount ARC but can't be certain due to blurry pics. ARC doesn't often display nice concentric growth rings either.
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  12. #11
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    Glencross got it. Red Pine , Californian Red Pine . It looks exactly like that . Was used heaps in Aussie furniture from the 1860s on and a lot was used in houses as skirting and architraves in Melbourne. In the furniture made in Victoria from roughly the 1860s it is normally seen as a secondary timber along side Red cedar as Backs and drawer sides and bottoms. It was used In housing a lot in the early 20th c . Not sure when it stopped being used but you see a lot around the 1880s possibly earlier to 1930s I think. It was ripped out and burnt for years and it could be hard to find for good furniture restoration projects.

    Not sure how much or if it was used outside Vic but its common here.

    Rob

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    Thanks fellas didn't consider redwood. There are two Californian redwoods one is famous sequoia in the mountains which are the tallest non flowering plants in the world. The other is known as the coastal redwood. Does anyone know if the timber from each of these is similar.
    Thanks Wayne

  14. #13
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    I had a job once from a tree surgeon guy who milled his own jobs or logs . I built him a pair of Sequoia boockases . Its even lighter in weight than the Red Pine, or this stuff was . Ive never compared the two by reading up on them though . I did see another huge load milled by another guy and it was the same as the first . slightly lighter colour than Red Pine , definatly lighter weight and softer in this example as well . You could just about write your name in the stuff with your nose !

    From what I just have been reading the Red Pine and Sequoia are the same thing . The stuff I see in furniture from 1860 is old growth stuff, and the Sequoia I used for the bookcases was grown here, so maybe faster and lighter weight because of that.
    Californian Red Pine and Sequoia look to be the same thing . I didnt think that was the case though . Maybe the 1860 stuff was the coastal stuff ?

    Rob

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    Quote Originally Posted by auscab View Post
    I had a job once from a tree surgeon guy who milled his own jobs or logs . I built him a pair of Sequoia boockases . Its even lighter in weight than the Red Pine, or this stuff was . Ive never compared the two by reading up on them though . I did see another huge load milled by another guy and it was the same as the first . slightly lighter colour than Red Pine , definatly lighter weight and softer in this example as well . You could just about write your name in the stuff with your nose !

    From what I just have been reading the Red Pine and Sequoia are the same thing . The stuff I see in furniture from 1860 is old growth stuff, and the Sequoia I used for the bookcases was grown here, so maybe faster and lighter weight because of that.
    Californian Red Pine and Sequoia look to be the same thing . I didnt think that was the case though . Maybe the 1860 stuff was the coastal stuff ?

    Rob
    That seems to be typical of most / all timbers when comparing timber sourced from old growth logs, compared to 2nd or 3rd cuts or plantation grown trees. Very noticeable with Australian Red Cedar.
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