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Thursday, April 3, 2014

National Woodworking Month Woodworker Spotlight: Herbine Hardwoods

 I found out recently that April is National Woodworking Month and, while I must admit that I thought that at first this was a gimmick to try to sell stains and tools, I thought about it and decided it would be a great opportunity to showcase some wonderful woodworking talent that I have come across in my journey as a woodworker. I have thought of a diverse group of individuals who are doing exciting things with wood that I will do my best to write about throughout the month of April.

When assembling a list in my head earlier today, I decided to start where I start with a project, the sawmill. This is where it all begins (with the exception of the forest!) and where crucial decisions are made that will influence the entire project. From wood selection and grain matching to moisture content, choosing the right wood for a piece of furniture is essential.

When I am looking to start a project, the first person I call is Rick Herbine at Herbine Hardwoods. Based in Lucketts, Virginia, Rick has been sawing logs as long as I have been involved in woodworking. Every time I go to his mill to purchase some wood I am immediately drawn to the bookmatched slabs leaning against the barn side to dry displayed side by side. To me, this is like going to an artists exhibition and some of the most fantastic figure I have seen has graced the side of Rick'sbarn.

While it is true that there are many sawmills around the area, I have always found Rick to be personable and knowledgeable about his product. As for the product, The wood that I have purchased from Rick has always been exceptional. Below are a few photos of some bookmatched slabs he has sawn. The photos were taken from his Facebook page which I have put a link to after the photos. Below that is a link to his website as well. If you are in the need for some beautiful wood, this should definitely be your first stop.

 Two bookmatched Ambrosia Maple slabs. The brown streaks in this maple surround areas where the Ambrosia beetle has bored into the wood. Whether this is a defense of the tree itself, or something that the beetle does to the wood, I am unsure, but the results are fantastic.
 Two walnut crotch bookmatched slabs.
 A second crotch bookmatched walnut set.
If you are in the need for Appalacain hardwoods either cut into boards or in natural edge slabs, give Rick a call. I am sure you will be impressed!


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