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best wood for ribs

updated wed 16 aug 06


Lynne and Bruce Girrell on mon 14 aug 06

Dave, Vince -

We have a specialty hardwood dealer nearby and they have a scrap bin in
which leftover pieces of various woods are sold by the pound. There's
nothing lower quality about these woods; they're simply small in size and
hence perfect for making ribs. We now have ribs of ebony, ipe, various
mahoganies, figured oak and figured maple. There are some that I don't know
the names of, but they're simply beautiful.

Beautiful tools are a joy to use, whether it's your own homemade rib, one of
Phil's Bison tools, or a well balanced, smooth running power tool. They all
make the job less of a job and more of a pleasure.

Any dense wood would make a decent rib. Mesquite would make a beautiful rib.
And just recently someone on the list mentioned osage orange, aka hedge
apple, aka bois d'arc, aka boddock. Gorgeous, hard stuff.

Some sort of power sander is highly recommended due to the hardness of the
woods. Also be aware that some woods contain irritants and toxins. The dust
can cause pretty severe reactions in some people. If in doubt, ask the place
where you buy the wood and/or check woodworking websites and other sources
for lists of toxic woods.

Bruce Girrell
enjoying the perfect weather of the Michigan summer that keeps us
sufficiently addicted to live here through the Michigan winter.
Just unloaded a series of ^10 rutile blue tests. Some good, some uhhhhhhh...
not so good