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BALSA

Ochroma spp.


Balsa is by far the least dense and most soft of all readily available woods. It is in a class all by itself in this regard. Although technically a hardwood, this is the softest of all woods and is in fact so soft and light that it is useless for "normal" wood usage (furniture, construction, etc.) but is outstandingly useful for model-making, especially working models of boats and planes. A uniform light tan color with straight even grain. Can be worked with a razor blade or "exacto" knife, either of which will cut right through it and leave a very clean surface. Sanding should be done only with very fine grit and a light touch.



my samples:


both sides of a sample plank of balsa / Ochroma lagopus --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


plank and end grain


end grain closeup of the piece directly above


plank and small piece and end grain of the larger piece


end grain closeup and END GRAIN UPDATE of the piece directly above --- BOTH shots are off a bit on the color. The closeup should be more white and less pink and the update should be more white and less greenish



web pics:


lumber


plank listed as balsa / Ochrama spp. and with wet and dry sections


planks listed as balsa / Ochroma lagopus


planks listed as balsa / Ochroma pyramidale


flat cut planks


quartersawn plank


planks; flat cut, rift cut, quartersawn


planks


plank --- wood is lighter than the pic makes it out to be


a set of joined planks --- color seems too dark to me


planks --- I'm not at all sure about the color on these