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What is Chestnut Wood?

Chestnut wood comes from chestnut trees, which are in the same family as beech trees. A chestnut blight nearly eliminated all of the chestnut trees in North America, so most of the country’s supply is imported.

Early Americans used chestnut wood to build barns and houses. It has a coarse grain that makes it difficult for turning but ideal for working with hand and power tools. It sands easily, but it can be brittle. Woodworkers keep a supply of glue and fasteners on hand when working with chestnut wood. It has a beautiful color when stained, and its color is similar to that of oak. Chestnuts are susceptible to pinworm infestations, and this can lead to a unique collection of holes. Woodworkers enjoy using chestnut wood veneers to cover cabinets, flooring, clocks and other items. It is also used frequently by antique furniture restorers. Chestnut wood can be expensive due to its minimal availability. However, chestnut wood veneers are much more affordable and provide projects with all of the beauty of the hardwood.

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