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Wood Species

While Aura Cabinetry will gladly investigate the possibility of using any wood type, below are some of the more common wood species used in building our cabinetry. Following the wood name is the species rating on the Janka Scale. The Janka hardness test measures the hardness of wood by calculating the force required to embed an 11.28mm steel ball into wood to half the ball’s diameter. As a general reference only, the wood species are also labeled from the most cost-effective ($) to the highest priced and exotic ($$$$).

Alder, Red 590 $

Alder is a relatively soft hardwood characterized by its warm tone and quiet grain pattern. Though it displays an even grain appearance, its softer nature makes it quite receptive to a wide variety of stains and finishes. Generally consistent in color, its heartwood may exhibit darker brown hues with shades of red. Like many closed-grain wood species, Alder reacts to light and will have a tendency to darken over time. This specie is generally more porous than most hardwoods and has a very moderate grain density. Due to this natural condition, Alder has a tendency to more readily absorb stains. This trait can result may manifest itself through the display of a darker overall coloration than other related species. Depending upon the stain color chosen, it may also display a degree of blotchiness.

Alder, Red (Knotty) 590 $

In addition to the attributes found in Alder, Rustic Alder will feature an assortment of the following characteristics; mineral steaks, heartwood, sapwood, gum spots, pitch pockets, pin knots, and open surface knots (that do not affect structural integrity). These characteristics will be allowed as they naturally occur within the material. To further enhance the rustic character, greater variation in color and grain will also be allowed.

Beech (European) 1300 $

Beech is a very strong, hard and durable close-grained hardwood. When compared to North American hardwood species, only Hickory has higher strength properties. With its tight, fine grain and uniform color, Beech dresses very smooth and sands to a high polish. Beech is widely used to mimic more expensive woods like Walnut, Cherry and Mahogany, and has a hardness that far exceeds that of Alder.

Beech (Rustic) 1300 $

In addition to the attributes found in European Beech, Rustic Beech will feature an assortment of the following characteristics; mineral steaks, heartwood, sapwood, gum spots, pitch pockets, pin knots, and open surface knots (that do not affect structural integrity). These characteristics will be allowed as they naturally occur within the material. To further enhance the rustic character, greater variation in color and grain will also be allowed.



Cherry (Select) 950 $$

Cherry is known for its warm, rich look. It has a very soft grain appearance that is easily brought out with staining. It machines and sands to a glass-like smoothness. The heartwood in Cherry is red in color and the sapwood is light pink. Cherry “mellows” or darkens with age. Exposure to bright or direct sunlight will cause the wood to darken and redden significantly. Cherry will have some sapwood, mineral streaking, fine pin holes and pitch pockets. 

Cherry (Rustic) 950 $$ 

In addition to the attributes found in Select Cherry, Rustic Cherry will feature an assortment of the following characteristics; mineral steaks, heartwood, sapwood, gum spots, pitch pockets, pin knots, and open surface knots (that do not affect structural integrity). These characteristics will be allowed as they naturally occur within the material. To further enhance the rustic character, greater variation in color and grain will also be allowed.

Clear Vertical Grain (CVG) Fir 660 $$$

Sawn to a vertical grain, Douglas fir’s light rosy color, which darkens over time when exposed to UV rays, is set off by its remarkably straight grain pattern. The tough fiber machines to an exceptionally smooth, glossy surface and works easily.

Hickory (Calico) 1820 $$

Hickory is known for its strength, hardness and flexibility. Typically, HickoryickoryHIc has a straight, rather coarse grain but occasionally it can be wavy or irregular. Hickory is most well known for its “calico” appearance and will have large variations in grain and color. Its heartwood is brown or reddish brown. Its sapwood is clearly distinguishable from heartwood, usually nearly white in color. Expect very distinct color variations on all items made from this species.

Mahogany (African) 830 $$$$

African Mahogany is a medium weight hardwood that is excellent for use in cabinets and furniture. Its heartwood has shades of pinkish red, darkening to reddish brown with exposure. The sapwood is a creamy or yellowish white. The grain appears mostly interlocked and dark grooves will appear when it is cut longitudinally.

Maple (Eastern Hard White) 1450 $$

Hard Maple is dense and light in color. Maple is characterized by its smooth, even and fine grain patterns which do not require filling. Natural maple has some color variation, but is generally more uniform than most select hardwoods. Mineral streaks are common in maple and appear darker when stained. Maple is commonly finished clear which can bring out its soft grain appearance. Due to its durability, Maple is commonly used in construction of furniture and cabinetry.

Red Oak (Rift) 1290 $$$

Rift cut oak is similar to its quarter sawn counterpart in that it displays a ribbon pattern. However, due to the nature of the rift cut it will display a vertical or straight grain without the flake figure found in quarter sawn oak.

Red Oak (Select) 1290 $

Oak is extremely common in cabinet construction. It has a coarser grain, is reasonably durable and is known for its predominant grain patterns that run from straight lines to arched and pointed. It takes stain and finish very easily. Oak is fairly easy to work with considering its density. Its sanding abilities, finishing abilities and overall stability are excellent. Light and dark variations are noticeable in lighter finishes. Oak is one of the stronger hardwoods. 

Walnut 1010 $$$$

Walnut is a distinct wood that is durable and strong. It is forgiving in hardness and takes stain very well which accentuates its grain patterns. Walnut is typically light to chocolate brown in color. It contains burls, butts and curls. Sapwood is white but it can be stained for a more uniform hue. Grain is usually straight but can sometimes be wavy or curly. Heartwood is chocolate brown, occasionally with darker, sometimes purplish streaks. Sapwood is white to yellowish brown. Dark blemishes are often present.


White Oak 1360 $$

Oak is extremely common in cabinet construction. It has a coarser grain, is reasonably durable and is known for its predominant grain patterns that run from straight lines to arched and pointed. It takes stain and finish very easily. Oak is fairly easy to work with considering its density. Its sanding abilities, finishing abilities and overall stability are excellent. Light and dark variations are noticeable in lighter finishes. Oak is one of the stronger hardwoods. 

White Oak (Quarter Sawn) 1360 $$$

While maintaining the strong qualities of oak, Quarter-sawn oak displays grain characteristics and patterns unlike its flat sawn counterpart. The unique appearance of this oak variation is due to the cutting process utilized at the mill when machining raw lumber. The material is quartered and then cut at a 90° angle to the growth ring of the tree. By cutting the material in this fashion, a ribbon-and-flake pattern is exposed; a contrast against the more common grain patterns found in oak.

White Oak (Rift) 1360 $$$

Rift cut oak is similar to its quarter sawn counterpart in that it displays a ribbon pattern. However, due to the nature of the rift cut it will display a vertical or straight grain without the flake figure found in quarter sawn oak.

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