What wood should I use?

I'm currently building an L-Shaped wet bar in my finished basement. 9 feet by 5 feet in dimensions. I'm pretty set on the front and side faces on being a medium oak. I want the bar top and arm rail to be a darker color because I'm looking for a rich look and separation from the rest of the bar. Should I also use oak and stain it a darker color or use some other type of wood. Money is not a problem...(within reason). I will entertain and appreciate any suggestions! Thanks!
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Walnut makes a nice looking contrast.
Bob S.

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In rec.woodworking
But wouldn't ebony have even more contrast? :) I mean, if money is not a problem.

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On 29 Nov 2003 14:28:26 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@cbpu.com (SKIDOG) wrote:

If'n ya'd like a nice pop fer yer eyes, try ebonizing the oak. Fill the pores, using some black pigment in the filler. Then do a barrier coat of shellac. Then apply clear finish with black Transtint, or other dye, in the finish for your color coat, used as a toner. Finish off with enough clear gloss to give you the depth that you want. If it's too sparkley, cut it back with some 4/0 steel wool (with something like Wol-Wax applied).
If'n ya do it right - people will pay money to touch it.
Regards, Tom Thomas J. Watson-Cabinetmaker Gulph Mills, Pennsylvania http://users.snip.net/~tjwatson
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(SKIDOG) wrote:

Everything is very OK but you have forgotten one ingredient. www.magicwood.org

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On 29 Nov 2003, Tom Watson spake unto rec.woodworking:

I know there's an off-color joke in here somewhere.
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Sometimes throwing a lot of money at a project doesn't add much to the end result. In the case of a bar, you might consider constructing a carcase frame out of poplar (inexpensive, good to work with and dimensionally stable) and cover it with inch hardwood veneer plywood (birch or something) stained and finished to whatever shade fits your design criteria. Use hardwood molding for embellishments. Plywood is much more practical than solid boards. It had practically no movement which is a major problem with a large area glued up from solid pieces; and the appearance is comparable.
For the top, consider using some sort of solid surface . . . granite, corian, etc. DON'T USE MARBLE. The variety of natural stone and artificial solid surfaces available is amazing. If nothing else, it's fun to visit a professional outlet and seeing what's out there. A bar, over the long haul, is going to take a lot of abuse from spills, acids and abrasion.

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I've been watching alot of Wood Works lately, so therefore my vote is for bubinga. Gorgeous.
Brian.

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Second the motion. Any exotic would be nice, but the rosewood family is killer.
Bob
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Brian recommended:

Don't know whether it's still open, as I moved out of the area a couple of years ago, but there used to be a restaurant in Peterborough, NH, with much woodwork in a combination of bubinga and wenge. Very art deco. The bar top was the biggest piece of bubinga I've ever imagined, much less seen. Call it 30 inches wide, 20 feet long, and 2.5 inches thick! Can't remember the name of the place, but it shares the old movie house with what's left of the theater. The folks who had the furniture made went out of business, but I can't believe the new owners would have changed the bar top. Worth going out of your way just to see that flitch.
Owen Davies
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On 29 Nov 2003 14:28:26 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@cbpu.com (SKIDOG) wrote:

My first thought is walnut, but I really like that wood. It is naturally dark, somewhat gray in color, and slowly lightens with yellow tones with age. Makes nice durable table tops too. What you use is all about your preference, what is so important is how you finish it.
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The bar in my fraternity when I was in college in New Orleans was solid Cypress. Took 40 years of fraternity house abuse without too much problem, although it did need some refinishing when I got to it. Looked absolutely incredible against the oak base.
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