Holly wood

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Is this commonly available? I'm looking for a board about 48" long to rip into decorative strips. I haven't called around to the local dealers yet. In thinking about it, I'm not sure I've ever seen it anywhere I've been. Where does it grow? Anyone here used it? Thanks.
JP
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On 4/28/2009 5:49 PM Jay Pique spake thus:

Dunno where to find it, but I remember years ago from a previous life when I was doing musical instrument repair that holly is used for stringing and purfling around the edges of soundboards, etc., so it may be available at places that stock wood for instruments. (These are pretty thin pieces, so don't know if they'd be big enough for you.)
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My friendly neighborhood hardwood dealer usually has it. www.northwestlumberco.com If you can't find it locally, I think they'll ship it to you.
Grows through most of North America, as far as I know, including in my back yard.
I've never used it for anything but small turnings -- you'd better have sharp tooling if you're going to turn holly.
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wrote:

Agreed, Holly gorows most every where in the U.S.

Why do you say that? I have found it to be pretty soft relatively. Marginally harder than Black Walnut which IMHO is pretty soft. I have never had a problem Holly pen blanks.
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Leon wrote:

A comparison of various woods on the Janka hardness scale: Yellow Poplar: 540 Honduras Mahogany: 800 Black Cherry: 950 Holly: 1020 Black Walnut: 1010 White Oak: 1360 Sugar Maple: 1450 Hickory: 1820 Persimmon: 2300 Mesquite: 2345 Ipe: 3680 Lignum Vitae: 4500
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Which is why you want the tooling to be very sharp. Turning soft woods with dull tools creates a lot of tear-out; turning hard woods with dull tools creates a lot of sawdust, but much less tear-out. Don't misunderstand me: that's not a good thing either; turning tools should always be as sharp as possible. I'm just saying that the consequences of *not* having them sharp are worse with soft woods than with hard ones.
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Ok, thanks. I have not really turned enough yet that I have had any really dull tools when turning. I'll know what to watch for if that becomes a problem.
I do recall having a problem once with Palm and a mixture of oat meal flakes and something else when turning pen blanks.
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On Wed, 29 Apr 2009 01:21:33 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@milmac.com (Doug Miller) wrote:

And generally a six inch board would be a BIG peice of holly from what I've seen.
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Why is that? Very hard? Sap filled? Not familiar with the type of wood but always learning!
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HEY! PAY ATTENTION. LOL Holly is relatively soft, he told me that sharp tools cause less tear out on the soft stuff.
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Sorry. Was scanning the messages. Ever since the spammers made it hard to determine a legitimate post from a #$#$% post, I've scanned headers and caught only the occasional internal content.
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And I hope you realize that I was just yanking your chain. LOL
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Oh man... Does this mean I have to recall the hit men? <grin>
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See my response to Leon, upthread.
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On Apr 29, 4:18pm, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Ilex Opaca, aka American Holly, is EXPENSIVE!!!
Perhaps a nice piece of maple will do the trick after all. Maybe I could bleach it a bit, too.
Thanks for the replies.
JP
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"Jay Pique" wrote:

Yes.
A ship builder's favorite.
Biggest application is with teak to build a teak and holly sole (floor) in a boat.
The holly strips are laid about 1/16-3/32 proud of the teak to provide traction when sole is wet.
Typical spacing would be 3/8 holly, 1-5/8 teak.
There are some simple tricks that can make fabrication a more simple task.
Lew
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I've been around boats for 50 years, and I know I don't have nearly as much experience as you, Lew, but I've never seen the holly raised. I guess it would add some traction (if someone was barefoot), but it presents more problems than benefits.
How do you clean in the corners between boards? There'd always be a grit/grime/dirt there.
How do you refinish the floor? Hand scraping or sanding a floor is bad enough, having to break out the fussy tools to do it is onerous.
The proud holly would take the brunt of the wear, and being the lighter colored wood, it would wear more and show it sooner.
I did a quick Google to see if I could find any examples of a cabin sole with the holly sitting proud and I couldn't find one. All of the examples I found were flush, the materials suppliers (both bonded to plywood and separate strips) sold only uniform thickness material. All of the refinishing instructions showed flush floors - even the "good" web sites like Practical Sailor.
So, where do you see the holly sitting proud? What type and era of boats?
R
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"RicodJour" wrote:

I've been around boats for 50 years, and I know I don't have nearly as much experience as you, Lew, but I've never seen the holly raised.

Frankly, neither have I, was relating a tale as told to me by an old time wood boat builder about "woodies" before my time.
I wouldn't want to do either the installation or the maintenance of a raised holly sole.

So, where do you see the holly sitting proud?

I don't.

What type and era of boats?

Before my time.
Lew
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Jay Pique wrote:

It grows all over the place but is rarely grown commercially. Small trees. Very, very white wood. Only time I've ever seen it for sale was at Woodcraft and it was expensive like ebony is expensive.
If you google "Holly lumber" you'll find some sources.
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Expensive but only about 1/2 the price of Ebony, at Woodcraft.
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