Common species of domestic wood include:


Red Oak
White Oak
Hickory
Walnut

Cherry
Maple
Pine


Red Oak

The characteristically American hardwood, various red oak species are a dominant part of the Tennessee forests. Of good hardness, with a bold grain, red oak is the quintessential flooring wood. Composed mainly of heartwood varying in color from wheat to pink to the occasional deep red, red oak has become increasingly popular due to price and its ease to stain, which can even out some of the variation in natural heartwood color. It is relatively stable, ships in good lengths and is a reliable. It has become the traditional choice for flooring.

Select & Better

Red Oak Select A more formal grade without knots or similar natural characteristics, it has become a favorite choice for home builders. A small percentage of white sapwood may present but heartwood will predominate. Colors will vary from light brown to pink to red within the same floor.

#1 Common

Red Oak 1 The #1 Common, comprising color variation, grey or black streaks, grey or blue sapwood, a small percentage of sound, tight knots of limited size, occasional wormholes or bird pecks. It can be stained to present an appearance not dissimilar to select flooring.

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White Oak

Comprised mainly of ‘forked leaf’ white oak, Tennessee white oak has been valued for generations in the export trade to Europe for its slow growth and relatively uniform color. The flooring contains only small amounts of white sapwood and is composed mainly of heartwood that is medium to dark brown in color. As a slower growth tree its grain is more muted than that of red oak. Substantially harder and denser as well, it makes an oak floor of excellent durability. White oak has a closed cellular structure that does not allow water to pass. As such, it is used is making wine and whiskey barrels. White oak stains well, especially in brown tones.

Select & Better

White Oak Select A relatively formal grade incorporating mostly brown heartwood with some white to cream sapwood, the occasional small brown streak or pin knot may be present. Otherwise knots and other natural characteristics are excluded.

#1 Common

White Oak 1 The #1 Common is characterized by small, tight knots, as well as, some color variation and sapwood in cream or grey colors. Some bird pecks, wormholes, and black mineral streaks will be seen in the grade.

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Hickory

Almost 50% harder than the oaks, hickory is the sturdiest and most durable of our domestic species. It has a white to cream sapwood with prominent chocolate to reddish-brown heartwood offering a beautiful contrast of colors. However, its normally slow-growing grain is relatively quiet, unlike red oak or ash. Hickory accepts a medium stain well for those who want to tone down its sapwood-heartwood contrast. If finished natural in select of common grades hickory gives more of an informal, country look to a home.

Select & Better

This grade contains the full range of heart and sapwood. Sapwood must be white or cream, occasional dark purple streaks admitted. Heartwood may have brown or black streaks and the occasional bird peck or pin wormhole is admitted.

#1 Common

  The #1 Common consists of unlimited bird pecks, pin wormholes and mineral streaking. Solid knots up to one inch admitted in wider widths. Sapwood may show light blue or grey without limitation. Many of these characteristics disappear into a stain.

#2 Common

  The #2 Common is a well manufactured and structurally sound rustic floor. A combination of 1 and 2 common flooring, it admits knots of unlimited size that do not threaten the integrity of the piece, small holes, wormholes and bird pecks of unlimited size and number. The wood consists primarily of shorter boards, one to four feet in length.

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Black Walnut

Celebrated for its deep chocolate heartwood and burly grain, its visual depth and beauty continue to make it a favorite as a domestic flooring wood. Of medium hardness, walnut will show the occasional ding over time in an active household, but remains as durable as any other commonly used species. In appearance it is characterized by a relatively small percentage of creamy or white sapwood in most grades. Due to the nature of the timber resource, flooring lengths in Walnut are somewhat shorter than in other species. Walnut will accept a stain relatively well, which may be used to create a more uniform appearance.

Select & Better

Comprised mostly of a heartwood ranging in tone from light brown to dark chocolate, select also includes a small percentage of creamy sapwood. While knots are excluded, the characteristic burl wood of walnut is admitted. Some short black streaks may be seen, as well as, the very occasional pin worm hole and bird peck. This look achieves a relatively formal floor.

#1 Common

The #1 Common consists of unlimited bird pecks, pin wormholes and sapwood. Solid knots up to one inch are admitted in wider widths. Sapwood may show light blue or grey without limitation. Many of these characteristics disappear into a stain.

#2 Common
A more rustic floor that will have a greater number of bird pecks, pin wormholes and knot holes. The floor can be stained to achieve a more uniform color. The wood consists primarily of shorter boards, one to four feet in length. Ask about our Short #2 Common which is comprised of a combination of Select and #1 Common in a shorter length. Often available, this “rustic” grade will offer a cleaner, more uniform floor at a reduced price.

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American Cherry

Cherry is an old-field tree, and with the return of so much Appalachian farmland to forest in the last century, there is now an abundance of cherry in our hardwood forest. Famed of course for its light pink to dark red heartwood, cherry also has a creamy sapwood found in most grades of flooring. In addition, it exhibits occasional small dark streaks in the growth rings, characteristic of American as opposed to European cherry. While especially noted for establishing a formal, colonial look in traditional homes, cherry is used in many settings and is increasingly popular now in the rustic grade of one and two common. Cherry is photosensitive and will turn noticeably darker during the first six months of installation. For that reason we recommend withholding the use of rugs during that period. It is of medium hardness and will show the occasional small mark when in service. It may be stained, but it is difficult to uniformly apply a hand-rubbed stain.

Select & Better

A clean, formal grade comprised mainly of heartwood though admitting a small quantity of sapwood. Short dark streaks will occur, as well as, the occasional pin knot. Sapwood will be white to cream in color.

#1 Common

  The #1 Common with sound knots of limited size and some wormholes are admitted. Unlimited sapwood and bird pecks are admitted. More color variation will be seen in this grade incorporating deep red streaks or reddish-brown areas covering much of the face of the piece. Sapwood may be cream or grey or light blue.

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Maple

A tough, durable wood, sugar maple is the traditional species for athletic and gymnasium floors. It works equally well in residential settings where a lighter-colored floor with a quiet grain is desired to set a clean, contemporary tone. While it is comprised mostly of a paper- to cream-white sapwood, it also has a light to medium brown heartwood. Maple does not generally stain well, although some professionals can achieve an acceptable appearance by popping the grain prior to applying the stain. This floor will perform best when special attention is paid to consistent dryness of job site conditions.

Select & Better

Maple A relatively uniform, formal floor, this grade will contain a small quantity of light brown heartwood. Knots are excluded though some burl will be seen. Small, narrow mineral streaks are also admitted. This is a very light-colored floor; as a result the wider widths will show noticeable seasonal cracks between pieces during the heating season.

#1 Common

  The #1 Common consists of significant color variation from the brown heartwood, brown or black streaks, bird pecks and wormholes. Sound knots of limited size are admitted. It is an excellent choice for a floor both contemporary and rustic in appearance.

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Pine
Pine woods can vary widely in hardness from species to specie. On the Janka scale, Caribbean heart pine is 1280, longleaf southern yellow pine is 870, shortleaf yellow pine is 690, white pine is 420 and eastern white pine is 380. Pine on average does not require an abnormal amount of effort to saw properly. It holds well with either glue or nails. On average, the various species sand better than white oak but the softer varieties can sometimes damage under heavy traffic.

Select & Better

Pine


This will be a very uniform floor with a small percentage of bird pecks and pin wormholes. The wood will be primarily white to yellow depending on the species. Heartwood will be a reddish orange to dark yellow color depending on the species.

#1 Common

 


#1 Common

The #1 Common contains some color variation and an increase in bird pecks, pin wormholes and closed knot holes.


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