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Katalox

Swartzia cubensis
Also known as |
Royal Mexican Ebony
Katalox Lumber @ Rare Woods USA

Although not a true Diospyros ebony species, Katalox earned its “Royal Mexican Ebony” nickname due to its great density (which actually supersedes all true ebonies, in that regard) and the fact that, as it ages, it turns considerably darker than when its initially cut and dried. It is known to be generally very durable, making the wood ideal for a variety of applications — although it can be very difficult difficult to re-saw (density) and glue, due to its typically high natural oil content. The grains can be straight, irregular or interlocked; it’s texture ranges from fine to medium, with a nice natural luster.

Despite its somewhat uncooperative working characteristics, Katalox’s stability and handsome appearance make the wood a popular choice with guitar luthiers and fine furniture craftsmen, alike. Its heartwood is among the most durable of all the exotics in the world, but the sapwood can be susceptible to bug holes.

This species is not listed in the CITES Appendices or on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, but its supply has been impacted by recent epidemic poaching across Central America (in particular, Mexico).

Why We Love This Wood

We love the purplish tones that come through on this dense, gorgeous species.

Client Creations
    Quick Look
    Katalox Lumber @ Rare Woods USA
    https://www.rarewoodsusa.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/Bow_Katalox_AnthonyDiMambro-wpcf_700x700.jpg,https://www.rarewoodsusa.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/Bow_Katalox_AnthonyDiMambro2-wpcf_700x700.jpg,https://www.rarewoodsusa.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/Bow_Katalox_AnthonyDiMambro3-wpcf_700x700.jpg,https://www.rarewoodsusa.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/Bow_Katalox_AnthonyDiMambro4-wpcf_700x700.jpg,https://www.rarewoodsusa.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/Bow_Katalox_AnthonyDiMambro5-wpcf_700x700.jpg,Anthony DiMambro
    A Popular Choice in
    Vital Statistics
    Main Color GroupDark Brown
    Grain Pattern Even
    Avg Dry Weight - LB/BF6
    Avg Dry Weight - KG/M31150
    Janka Hardness - LBF3660
    Janka Hardness - N16260
    PRICING

    Description

    Grade

    UOM

    Price

    Katalox-Standard-4/4Lumber
    4/4 Lumber
    Standard
    bf
    19
    bf
    no
    Katalox-Standard-5/4Lumber

    5/4 Lumber

    Standard
    bf
    19
    bf
    no
    Katalox-Standard-6/4Lumber

    6/4 Lumber

    Standard
    bf
    19
    bf
    no
    Katalox-Standard-8/4Lumber

    8/4 Lumber

    Standard
    bf
    19
    bf
    no

    Pre-cut Sizes
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    Dimensions

    Grade

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    Lumber Packs
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    Qty

    Grade

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    Katalox

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    Katalox

    Wormy. Skip planed.

    KATALOX1120
    54.25 × 5.63 × 1.13 in

    Wormy. Skip planed.

    $56.25

    Katalox

    Wormy. Skip planed.

    KATALOX1120
    54.25 × 5.63 × 1.13 in

    $56.25

    Katalox
    KATALOX1120
    54.25 × 5.63 × 1.13 in

    $56.25

    Katalox

    Wormy, checks.

    KATALOX1118
    55.06 × 4.5 × 1 in

    Wormy, checks.

    $45.63

    Katalox

    Wormy, checks.

    KATALOX1118
    55.06 × 4.5 × 1 in

    $45.63

    Katalox
    KATALOX1118
    55.06 × 4.5 × 1 in

    $45.63

    Katalox

    Skip planed.

    KATALOX1116
    71.75 × 5.25 × 1 in

    Skip planed.

    $75.68

    Katalox

    Skip planed.

    KATALOX1116
    71.75 × 5.25 × 1 in

    $75.68

    Katalox
    KATALOX1116
    71.75 × 5.25 × 1 in

    $75.68

    Katalox

    Skip planed.

    KATALOX1110
    50.5 × 4.38 × 1 in

    Skip planed.

    $44.44

    Katalox

    Skip planed.

    KATALOX1110
    50.5 × 4.38 × 1 in

    $44.44

    Katalox
    KATALOX1110
    50.5 × 4.38 × 1 in

    $44.44

    Katalox

    Skip planed.

    KATALOX1109
    58.88 × 4.31 × 1 in

    Skip planed.

    $50.99

    Katalox

    Skip planed.

    KATALOX1109
    58.88 × 4.31 × 1 in

    $50.99

    Katalox
    KATALOX1109
    58.88 × 4.31 × 1 in

    $50.99

    Katalox

    Cracks.

    KATALOX1100
    42.94 × 4.38 × 1.25 in

    Cracks.

    $43.30

    Katalox

    Cracks.

    KATALOX1100
    42.94 × 4.38 × 1.25 in

    $43.30

    Katalox
    KATALOX1100
    42.94 × 4.38 × 1.25 in

    $43.30

    Katalox

    Pinholes.

    KATALOX1099
    37.88 × 7.06 × 1 in

    Pinholes.

    $49.25

    Katalox

    Pinholes.

    KATALOX1099
    37.88 × 7.06 × 1 in

    $49.25

    Katalox
    KATALOX1099
    37.88 × 7.06 × 1 in

    $49.25

    Katalox
    Knots.
    KATALOX1071
    50.81 × 4.38 × 1 in

    Knots.

    $40.99

    Katalox
    Knots.
    KATALOX1071
    50.81 × 4.38 × 1 in

    $40.99

    Katalox
    KATALOX1071
    50.81 × 4.38 × 1 in

    $40.99

    Katalox
    Spalted. Wormholes.
    KATALOX1026
    49 × 4.38 × 1.38 in

    Spalted. Wormholes.

    $53.90

    Katalox
    Spalted. Wormholes.
    KATALOX1026
    49 × 4.38 × 1.38 in

    $53.90

    Katalox
    KATALOX1026
    49 × 4.38 × 1.38 in

    $53.90

    Other Species

    Osage Orange - Argentine

    This South American species is closely related to the domestic Osage Orange.  The lumber it yields is typically a bit cleaner with less defects.  It is pretty hard and dense making it tough on tools, but it turns and finishes well.

    Common Uses:
    boxmaking, cabinetry, carving, crafting, inlay, specialty items
    Detail
    Common Uses
    osage-orange-argentine
    Tamarind - Spalted

    Spalted Tamarind comes from South East Asia.   The decay/spalting gives the wood awesome spiderweb type patterns that add character and excitement to its appearance.  The spalting is most prevalent in the sapwood which is prone to attack from bugs and fungus which cause it.

    It is moderately difficult to work, but turns and finishes well.  Sometimes the rot is more endemic than is obvious from looking at the surface of the lumber result in some wastage (lost pieces).

    Take care to use good dust collection and a dust mask, as the fungal spores add more to the air than dust alone.

    Common Uses:
    boxmaking, inlay, specialty items, turnings
    Detail
    Common Uses
    tamarind-spalted
    Chakte Viga

    This vibrant Central America wood can features primary colors ranging from orange to golden brown (with gold, red and sometimes even green accent coloration). It is thought to be the closest relative to Brazilwood (famous for its use in stringed-instrument bows), and Chakte Viga shares many of the same acoustic properties. Grains are straight, but sometimes interlocked — otherwise, this wood works easily, and finishes well. It has a fine texture and excellent natural luster. Sap is a pale off-white to pale yellow.

    Chakte Viga is a wood that has been starting to emerge from relative obscurity over the last decade or so, being one of the lesser-known and -demanded woods from the tropical Central America region. We feel it has a huge untapped potential as a guitar tonewood, as well as in fine furniture production in the US. The wood has some very subtle aesthetics, sometimes exhibiting a 3D-like shimmering chatoyance after being finished with clear lacquer.

    Common Uses:
    fine furniture, furniture, inlay, turnings
    Detail
    Common Uses
    chakte-viga
    Longhi

    Longhi is an African wood with similar working properties to its more well-known cousin, Anegre. Its color varies from a greyish-white to beige to pinkish-brown color, which slightly darkens with age and UV-ray exposure. Its generally light appearance makes sapwood difficult to distinguish. Its grains are typical straight (though occasionally interlocked) and its texture ranges between fine and medium-fine. It can sometimes possess mottled or subtle tiger-striped figuring.

    The wood must be carefully dried, as it is susceptible to fungus. It is considered to be moderately durable, and moderately stable. Longhi has a solid strength-to-weight ratio, which makes it a popular choice for flooring and decking.

    Common Uses:
    cabinetry, decking, flooring, furniture
    Detail
    Common Uses
    longhi
    Birch - Yellow

    Heartwood can vary from pale yellow to a light, muted reddish brown; sapwood is grayish-white. There are many species of Birch, worldwide; it is one of the most popular woods, ironically, for both veneer and utility applications. Figured pieces are the more desirable for veneer, with wide, dramatic curly figuring (similar to Cherry) decorating the surface.

    American Birch works easily — it turns, glues and finishes well — although most boards have very little natural luster. It’s a versatile wood that can be used for a number of different applications, but it needs to be protected, as the wood will decay when exposed to the elements. (… and if left unprotected will rot.)

    Common Uses:
    boxmaking, cabinetry, crafting, flooring, furniture
    Detail
    Common Uses
    birch-yellow
    Alder

    Considered to be the most abundant hardwood in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States, Red Alder has long been used in the region for furniture and cabinetry production — as well as being a popular choice for electric guitar bodies dating back to when the instrument first went into mass production, in the 1950’s. Ranging in color from a light tan to reddish brown, Alder has a soft, lightweight stature — which makes the wood very easy to work, and it finishes and glues well.

    Red Alder is usually sold in two different grades: knotty, and clear. Clear grades are most desired by cabinet and furniture crafters. Many such tradesmen compare the wood’s cooperative disposition to that of Black Cherry.

    Although technically a hardwood, care must be taken with Alder until finished as its surface can be rather soft (thus, denting easily). The wood is decidedly non-durable, so confining its use to indoor applications and treating the wood with some type of hardening finish (such as lacquer) is recommended.

    Common Uses:
    cabinetry, lutherie, millwork, musical Instruments
    Detail
    Common Uses
    alder
    katalox
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