Butternut

butternutGeneral: It is sometimes called White Walnut.  The trees are native to the eastern United States from Tennessee and western North Carolina north to southern Ontario and Quebec.

Description: Butternut wood is light in weight and takes polish well, is highly rot resistant, but is much softer than black walnut wood. Heartwood is usually a light to medium tan, sometimes with a reddish tint. Growth rings are darker and form fairly distinct grain patterns. Sapwood is a pale yellowish white. Oiled, the grain of the wood usually shows much light.

Workability: Butternut is easily worked with both hand and machine tools. It is an extremely soft wood. Butternut has a tendency to leave some fuzzy surfaces after planing or sanding.  Sharp cutters and fine-grit sandpaper is recommended. Butternut glues, stains, and and takes a rich, lustrous finish.  Its open grain may require some filling prior to finishing.

Common Uses: It is often used to make furniture and is a favorite of woodcarvers, also used in mill work and for veneer

SRH Stock:

Thicknesses: 4/4

Widths:  4″ to 8″

Lengths:  Mostly 8′

Surfacing:  Skip planed

Butternut Links:

The Wood Database

The American Hardwood Information Center