Sassafras: Domestic Hardwood

Sassafras wood is classified as a domestic hardwood lumber that is located throughout the eastern United States.

The sapwood is light yellow and narrow; the heartwood is orange to dark brown, occasionally with orange swirls about ¼ to ½ inch in diameter. The wood is ring porous, making the growth rings very distinct. The early pores are easily seen with the naked eye. The wood, when freshly cut, has the distinctive odor of sassafras. The wood tends to darken with exposure to light.

Sassafras has excellent machining characteristics and is a favorite for home woodworking projects. Sassafras is also a great alternative to white oak, and it has the same looking grain but is much lighter and is typically more affordable.

Sassafras has a Janka hardness of 630.

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Characteristics

Origin of Wood Type Eastern U.S.
Botanical Name Sassafras Albidum
Specific Gravity .50
Avg. Weight Per BF 3.5 lbs
Color Range Tan to brown heartwood, sapwood is lighter
Rarity / Availability Common
Typical Avg. Width 5 – 12 inches
Typical Avg. Length 8 – 12 feet
Avg. Waste Factor 20%
Wood Uses All woodworking and cabinetry, the heartwood is good for exterior
Lumber Grades FAS through 2 common
Other Trade Names Sassafras

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