Best substitution for Honduras Mahogany

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dougatl
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Re: Best substitution for Honduras Mahogany

Post by dougatl » Thu Dec 17, 2009 8:34 am

I agree that Honduran mahogany can be a bit tricky to find, but it is certainly not a big job, at least in lengths to about 10 ft. Longer may be harder to find. It runs about$9.50 bd/ft retail for 10/4 material here in Atlanta and you can specify that it all be quartersawn.

That said, I agree that there are many good substitutes.
Doug

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ToddM
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Re: Best substitution for Honduras Mahogany

Post by ToddM » Thu Jun 01, 2017 7:24 am

Ready to build some frames and went to my favorite and local hardwood store. Couldn't find Honduran Mahogany, but there is plenty of what they call African Mahogany and Phillipine Mahogany @ $4.83 per bd. ft.

A google turned up a place about one hour away that has Honduran Mahogany, and plenty of it, ..., @ $29.00 per bd. ft. What the Heck?!?!

So, I guess that I will not be using Honduran Mahogany for the frames. And I want opinions on the options. African Mahogany, White Oak, other?

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Bill Edmundson
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Re: Best substitution for Honduras Mahogany

Post by Bill Edmundson » Thu Jun 01, 2017 7:42 am

Todd

I mostly use African. White Oak takes a bend better. WO is heavy and very hard.

Bill
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sproggy
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Re: Best substitution for Honduras Mahogany

Post by sproggy » Thu Jun 01, 2017 7:49 am

Todd, the post you replied to is nearly 8 years old and timber supplies have changed in that time with conservation limiting supply of Honduran mahogany and therefore pushing its price up. 'African Mahogany' is a generic term, not a specific timber. It is often used to describe kyaha but can be used for other timbers too. Ensure that you know what you're getting. 'Phillipine Mahogany' is another generic term but is often used for meranti. Again, make sure you know what you're getting and try to understand the relative characteristics of the different timbers.

There are a number of different 'mahogany type' timbers suitable for boatbuilding in addition to the two you have mentioned and the choice is down to personal preference (whether you like the appearance) availability in your locale and price as much as anything else.

White oak is stronger and heavier than most of the 'mahoganies' as Bill said but you'll find as many opinions about what to use for frames as there are people to ask. Just go with your preference but be guided by the designer's recommendation (if any) in the plans and build manual. Personally I'm using white oak for frames and utile for bright finished areas but that's for a variety of reasons that may not apply to you.

PeterG
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Re: Best substitution for Honduras Mahogany

Post by PeterG » Thu Jun 01, 2017 8:00 am

I am using African Mahogany which like Sproggy says can be one of many species, all good for boat building. Khaya Ivorensis is the most common African mahogany here in the US, followed by Utile and Sapele. These species have similar densities and strength so any one is good to use, all are a bit heavier and slightly stronger than Honduras/American mahogany, at far less cost. Sapele can have very interesting grain and often is used for bright finishes (stained and varnished). I am using Khaya for my frames and long pieces, highly recommended.
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DrBryanJ
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Re: Best substitution for Honduras Mahogany

Post by DrBryanJ » Thu Jun 01, 2017 8:49 am

I have been using sapele for most of my build. My frames are made from a different "african mahogany", but I don't know which species. The sapele has been nice to work with.

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JimmY
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Re: Best substitution for Honduras Mahogany

Post by JimmY » Thu Jun 01, 2017 8:53 am

+1 on the Sapele. It is pretty easy to work with and is between African Mahogany and White Oak on the weight scale. Sapele does splinter when routing, so you need to be careful there.
-Jim
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ToddM
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Re: Best substitution for Honduras Mahogany

Post by ToddM » Thu Jun 01, 2017 12:35 pm

sproggy wrote:Todd, the post you replied to is nearly 8 years old and timber supplies have changed in that time with conservation limiting supply of Honduran mahogany and therefore pushing its price up.
Yeah, I am reading a lot of the posts to pick up info. It is something to see that as recent as 10 years ago, 'Honduran Mahogany' was priced at $9 per bd. ft.
sproggy wrote: 'African Mahogany' is a generic term, not a specific timber. It is often used to describe kyaha but can be used for other timbers too. Ensure that you know what you're getting. 'Phillipine Mahogany' is another generic term but is often used for meranti. Again, make sure you know what you're getting and try to understand the relative characteristics of the different timbers.

White oak is stronger and heavier than most of the 'mahoganies' as Bill said but you'll find as many opinions about what to use for frames as there are people to ask. Just go with your preference but be guided by the designer's recommendation (if any) in the plans and build manual. Personally I'm using white oak for frames and utile for bright finished areas but that's for a variety of reasons that may not apply to you.
I have been reading the older posts in the wood section of the forum, and there is more on the different species than I can fill my head with. And it is going to be hilarious when I ask one of the old timers at my favorite hardwood store what the species is of the Phillipine Mahogany they have. My guess is the response will be something like, "pieces of what?".

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sproggy
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Re: Best substitution for Honduras Mahogany

Post by sproggy » Thu Jun 01, 2017 1:10 pm

ToddM wrote:And it is going to be hilarious when I ask one of the old timers at my favorite hardwood store what the species is of the Phillipine Mahogany they have. My guess is the response will be something like, "pieces of what?".
I would say that if they don't know their timber then you're shopping at the wrong place. They probably dumb it down and call it Phillipine Mahogany for the average DIYer but are unlikely to be phased by questions about the timber's origin and species.

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Bill Edmundson
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Re: Best substitution for Honduras Mahogany

Post by Bill Edmundson » Thu Jun 01, 2017 1:52 pm

Todd

As remember Philippian is actually a type of cedar. That is not a problem. Chris Craft used it for a while after WW-II. These are the white hulled CC's. They didn't like the way it finished out.

Bill
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Mark-NJ
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Re: Best substitution for Honduras Mahogany

Post by Mark-NJ » Mon Jun 26, 2017 4:46 pm

Here's a good chart that explains it all pretty well.

click here for an easier-to-read on-line version: http://www.wood-database.com/wp-content ... milies.pdf

Image

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Locutus
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Re: Best substitution for Honduras Mahogany

Post by Locutus » Tue Jun 27, 2017 9:56 am

Hmm...Interesting that there's no "meranti" on that chart. And "Philippine Mahogany" is in the grey area of "mahogany in name only."

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sproggy
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Re: Best substitution for Honduras Mahogany

Post by sproggy » Tue Jun 27, 2017 10:17 am

Locutus wrote:Hmm...Interesting that there's no "meranti" on that chart. And "Philippine Mahogany" is in the grey area of "mahogany in name only."
See http://www.wood-database.com/philippine-mahogany/.

ToddM
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Re: Best substitution for Honduras Mahogany

Post by ToddM » Thu Jul 27, 2017 10:18 am

I have a lead on some Honduran Mahogany for a good price, but the maximum length of the available boards is 6'. Would lengths of 6' and less be advisable to use as the outside covering of the hull, or are they too short? I am thinking it could be used for the frames, but it is 8/4 so each board would have to be resawn, and I can get 4/4 African Mahogany which does not need to be resawn. Suggestions?

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Bill Edmundson
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Re: Best substitution for Honduras Mahogany

Post by Bill Edmundson » Thu Jul 27, 2017 10:30 am

I used African for everything.

Bill
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