When shopping at your local Ring's End location, you may have noticed a good selection of different hardwoods available. Hardwood lumber is used in many applications and offers a higher level of strength and durability than softwood lumber does. In fact, some of the strongest and most expensive furniture available is made up entirely of solid hardwood joinery.
Here at Ring's End, we're dedicated to teaching our customers everything we can about our products. Learn everything you need to know about hardwoods here!
When you shop with Ring's End, you are given the assurance that the products you purchase are top quality, lumber included. Most species of wood we carry are available in many different levels of quality or grade. However, we buy only the highest quality available within each grade of each hardwood species.
Your home is probably your biggest investment, and we believe you deserve the option to choose the best lumber available. Before you specify or purchase lumber, we urge you to compare the quality of our lumber with that of our competitors. Other stores may sell hardwood products, but they may not be the solid hardwood products you can purchase with us. In fact, sometimes the products aren't solid but rather thin veneer bonded to lower quality cores. The best isn't always the cheapest, but it certainly is in the long run!
There are plenty of options available when it comes to hardwood lumber, but what exactly makes a tree a hardwood species? Interestingly enough, hardwood trees and softwood trees are different not due to the wood itself, but due to the way the tree's seeds are delivered.
Hardwood trees have seeds that have a coating, like a fruit or a shell. These trees have broad leaves, and bear nuts and fruit, as implied by the type of coatings they can have on their seeds. Most hardwood species are considered to be deciduous trees, found in deciduous forests. The wood provided by these trees tends to be very dense, and doesn't require pressure treating to be weather resistant in most cases.
Softwood trees have seeds that have no coating on them. They are cone bearing, and as the cone opens the seeds are exposed. Most often, you'll note that the most common type of softwood available is pine. All species of pine trees are softwoods, and so are trees like the Douglas fir.
Now that you know what a hardwood tree is, it is important to understand that there are hardwood species considered to be domestic, and some that are considered to be tropical.
Domestic hardwood trees are trees found in North America. These woods tend to have a warmer, more traditional appearance, and are commonly used as flooring. Domestic hardwoods consist of the following:
Tropical hardwoods, also known as exotic hardwoods, are found in different parts of the world, but tend to come from more tropical regions, hence the name. They're often used in more modern or contemporary homes, as either flooring or furniture. Some examples of tropical hardwoods are:
Because these trees take longer to grow than most softwoods, you'll find that most of them seem expensive compared to them. Additionally,when comparing domestic wood to tropical wood, you'll find that the tropical hardwoods are more expensive compared to the domestic species available.
Here at Ring's End, we pride ourselves on offering a variety of different hardwoods to our customers. We carry both domestic and tropical species, and we're sure to have exactly what you need when it comes to your lumber needs. Check out some of the different hardwoods we have to offer.
Ipe is perhaps the strongest hardwood we offer. In Atlantic City, one thing they don't gamble on is the material used to build the famous Boardwalk. That's why they choose Ipe (pronounced eye-pay), the only wood durable enough to withstand high-heeled pedestrians, winter storms, and moist salty air. Ipe's unique properties make it naturally resistant to wear, rot, splintering, termites, fire, marine borers and virtually every other threat imaginable. Think of Ipe as an outdoor hardwood floor!
Ipe is commonly used as a deck material, and can last up to 25 years used in commercial applications. Other products only tend to have a lifespan of about 15 years! It is important to keep in mind the weight of this wood, as well. It weighs 69 pounds per cubic foot, over double what other woods weigh!
Ipe does not require maintenance coatings or treatment to maintain its strength or structural integrity. And it is truly beautiful with a smooth, clean surface and tight interwoven grain. Its natural lustre ranges from a rich russet to a classic reddish-brown hue. Left unstained or treated it matures to a handsome silver patina.
Another tropical wood we offer, teak is wood with an absolutely gorgeous grain. Teak is a very durable and stable hardwood with a unique property. Because it grows in sandy soil, it tends to have a very high silica content, and due to this it's nearly waterproof. Teak is an excellent choice for marine use, as well as furniture.
A domestic hardwood that we offer, it's entirely likely you've encountered maple sometime before in your life. This hardwood is an incredibly popular choice for flooring as well as cabinetry. Maple grain comes in a variety of different styled, and can make for beautiful faces on the doors of cabinets, specifically!
At Ring's End we offer not one, but two types of oak hardwoods! We have both red and white oak, and while their grain pattern can look similar, both are suitable for different purposes. Red oak, being more porous and a bit less dense, is better for indoor applications. White oak is less porous and more dense, making it more rot resistant and more suited to outdoor applications.