Black Cherry: Prunus serotina
Rough: 4/4, 5/4 & 8/4 shorts
Rough: Longer lengths available on special order
D2S: short boards of various widths & lengths
Pricing: from $4.95 /BF +
Black Cherry is harvested in Southern Ontario and Quebec, but the better wood typically comes for the North-Central United States. The wood quality, consistency of density and colour seems to be more predictable when grown a little further south. The outer wood (sap) is quite blond and changes very little with sun in comparison to the darker, richer coloured heartwood that darkens significantly with light exposure.
It has a Janka rating of 950 suggesting a relatively easy wood to cut and sand…At Lacasse, we use significant quantities of American Black Cherry to make canoe paddles, capitalizing on its wonderful balance of strength and light weight… at least compared to maple or ash. The heartwood is also considered to be quite rot resistant… another bonus if you’re making paddles!!
I would consider cherry one of my favorite woods to work with, not only for its rich, intense colour as it ages, but most critically, its ease of machining, sanding and finishing. The tree is not huge, but finding decent widths and length, of furniture grade lumber doesn’t seem to be difficult.
NOTES: Fresh sawn Black cherry is actually a pretty blond wood, but expose it to the sun for 24 hours and you see it real face. UV rays develop a rich, reddy brown hue, that gathers richness with age… probably one of the most common, light-sensitive wood species.
Special Boards: Mineral Striations in Cherry
Some cherry can show extensive mineral pockets that create interesting, dramatic black streaking in the best case and small incremental voids in the worst, …creates some pretty amazing visuals on some canoe paddles and decorative charcuterie boards seen going through our shop. Like all unique boards, they are wonderful pieces in the right application, distractions in other applications.