Woodworking For Beginners – Understanding the Characteristics of Wood

Nancy B. Alston

Since ancient times, wood has been utilized to create homes, bridges, boats, ships, arches and also used for decorative purpose. With the evolution of civilizations, wood was identified as a durable and light material which can be used for various purposes.

With progress of the civilization and discovery of various metals such as bronze, steel and silver, though their popularity increased, wood continued to be one of the favorite elements in arts, crafts, home making, and several other purposes. Gradually the skill of utilizing wood for different purpose also went through transformation.

Historical and archeological evidences advocate that there had been highly skilled craftsmen who used to carve idols from single wooden piece. For those who are beginning to learn woodworking, it is very important to learn about features of wood and different kinds of wood and their quality.

There are different kinds of wood material which can be used for different purposes depending on their characteristic features. There used to be only two kinds of woods, one is hard wood and the other is softwood obtained from broadleaf trees and coniferous trees respectively.

But in modern times there has been one more kind of wood named plywood or manmade wood. Manmade wood became very popular due to the limited supply of natural wood. Although, they are not as durable or strong as natural wood, it does fulfill the needs of home builders and general carpenters.

While considering wood as a material for any purpose, one should understand the basic requirement and then utilize wood judiciously because wood is not only precious but also extensive use of wood might have long standing effects on the environment. So the woodworkers should be judicious while advising their customers for the right kind of materials to go for.

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