Spalted Maple is one of my favorite woods. This is regular Maple that has a fungal infection in the tree. It causes these amazing patterns of color to emerge, and makes the wood even more interesting. There are different types of spalting, and they all have their own features.
One of the nice things about Spalted Maple is that depending on where you purchase the wood, it is typically not much more expensive than standard Maple. These pieces can range in price based on the beauty and complexity of the spalting, and as always pieces with an extra-ordinary amount of the figure can fetch a higher price.
Try using Spalted Maple for a project, and you will like the look. The piece in the picture is an end for a traditional wooden toolbox. The piece that I am using has a large random streak of green running through it. Once made into a toolbox, the spalting will contrast with the traditional build nicely.
Other woods can be spalted as well, such as Beech, Birch, Oak, and Aspen. When looking for an interesting wood that will not break the bank, choose a spalted piece and get a lot of bang for a lot less buck. You can find spalted wood at a local hardwood store, or online.
Briar is another favorite wood of mine, and I made my wedding ring from Briar with a titanium band inside for strength. Take some time to wander around a wood store and see what natural beauty there is to offer.
What is your favorite wood? Share a comment and help everyone find a new favorite species.
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