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SILKY OAK

Grevillea robusta

(other species also shown on this page)

Grevillea robusta of the family Proteaceae. There is some confusion around this name, but my own samples were sold to me as Grevillea robusta, if any botanical designation was given, and the Wood Book (see below) lists silky oak as Grevillea robusta. For a discussion of the name confusions, see the link directly below.

Because of the occasional large ray flakes, this is sometimes called lacewood although it would never be confused with true lacewoods (more about that in the link directly below). Also, it COULD be confused with sycamore by an inexperienced viewer. This wood is moderately light, easy to work, and has a pleasing grain pattern.

In Hawaii, this wood more commonly goes by the name "silver oak"

There are at least 40 other species from over 20 other genera that have "sliky oak" as all or part of one or more of their common names and some of them are included on this page including blush silky oak / Bleasdalea bleasdalei, briar silky oak / Musgravea heterophylla, and brown silky oak / Darlingia darlingiana.

An illustrated discussion on the confusion among the names
lacewood, leopardwood, planetree, sycamore, silky oak and others




my samples:


both sides of a sample plank of silky oak / Grevillea robusta --- HUGE enlargements are present.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


plank and closeup. The face grain shows up much better in the enlargements


the other side of the plank above, and a closeup. Again, the face grain shows up much better in the enlargements


a small section, with sapwood, cut from the larger plank above and medium-sanded


end grain closeup and END GRAIN UPDATE of the piece directly above


both sides of a pair of planks


plank and end grain --- color is just a hair too pink. This is a near-quartersawn piece taken from one of the larger pieces directly above. The face grain shown is almost perfectly quartersawn, as you can see from the end grain. The opposite face had much smaller ray flakes as you would expect from the angle of the rays to that face.


end grain closeup and END GRAIN UPDATEof the piece directly above


plank and closeup


plank and end grain


end grain closeup of the piece directly above


a couple of small planks and an end grain shot. I noticed these as I was taking cuts off of a larger plank and separated them out because of the excellent quartersawn surface on the side of each. You can see the ray flakes better in the enlargements.


end grain closeup of one of the pieces directly above.


side grain close up and end grain closeup of one of the small planks above. On the end grain shot, the right-hand side shows the almost perfectly quartersawn surface that is shown in the side grain shot which shows the elongated ray flakes that occur when the rays are parallel to the surface.


both sides of a sample plank of blush silky oak / Bleasdalea bleasdalei --- 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


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of brown silky oak / Darlingia darlingiana --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by Mark Peet whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of dwarf silky oak (aka Bank's grevillea) / Grevillea banksii --- 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


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of briar silky oak / Musgravea heterophylla --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by Mark Peet whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of fishtail silky oak / Neorites kevediana --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by Mark Peet whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site. The color on these pics are too red. Try as I might I could not get the color correction to properly show the wood as the more reddish-brown that it is instead of the reddish-purple that shows here


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of diffuse porous black silky oak/ Stenocarpus reticulatus --- 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


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of Southern silky oak / Orites excelsa --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by Mark Peet whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site. Although Mark has this correctly identified as "prickly ash", it also goes by the name Southern silky oak and since I've put it here on the silky oak page, I've chosen to use that common name.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


silky oak veneer --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sheet was contributed to the site by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


The Wood Book pics


flat cut, quartersawn, end grain
silky oak (Grevillea robusta) from The Wood Book --- both levels of enlargement are available for all 3 views



web pics:


plank and closeup


planks listed as silky oak without botanical designation --- the rich orange color in the first one is unlikely but I cannot say with authority that is is false.


plank and turning stock. Note that the upper piece in the 2nd pic is the same as the lower right in the 1st pic but the colors are totoally different. The 1st pic has, I am sure, the correct color. The 3rd pic is from the same set of wood, but was taken along with the 2nd pic, thus also has the wrong color.


really wild grain silky oak


planks, all listed as lacewood / Grevillea robusta, but as explained elsewhere, I do hold that the name lacewood is more properly applied to Cardwellia sublimis and Roupala brasiliense and Grevillea robusta should be called lacewood, so I put it here (and these do LOOK like the other pics here of silky oak / Grevillea robusta).


planks listed as Australian lacewood / Grevillea robusta --- see note with set directly above


plank listed as silky oak / Australian lacewood


plank listed as Hawaiian lacewood


flat cut and quartersawn faces of a plank listed as silk (sic) oak and with a color that I do not find believable


scales listed as silky oak / Grevillea robusta


plank listed as moistened silky oak, but with a color that is just ridiculous --- it's possible that this is actually lacewood in which case the color would be somewhat more believeable


turning stock


pen blanks


planks listed as Hawaiian silver oak, no botanical designation


plank listed as silver oak


veneer


silky oak pen