Wood Choices

Types of Solid Wood

There are numerous types of solid hard woods you can choose to have your Amish custom gun cabinet or pistol display case made out of.  Each wood has its own attributed and characteristics which give your gun cabinet its own individual depth and life.  Below we will discuss some of the different types of woods you can choose from and what the main differences are between the solid hard woods.

 red-oak Oak
Our standard oak is a red oak which is a straight grained hardwood with varying texture and when stained in a natural color has a tan-pinkish hue.  The varying texture occurs due to the differing rate of growth throughout the trees lifetime.  Red Oak is still one of our most popular hard woods used in our custom gun cabinet as well as our other many pieces of Amish custom furniture due to its open grain, occasional knots, and prominent patterns.
 Amish-Cherry Cherry
Cherry is quickly becoming one of our more popular hardwood choices in many of our Amish custom gun cabinets and custom furniture.  Cherry features a light red to reddish brown to a beautiful deep red hue.  Cherry, when stained has a smooth multi-colored grain pattern which can sometimes contain many color variations.  Cherry is also one of the only solid hard woods that we use for Amish custom furniture that can darken or “ripen” over time.
 amish-rustic-cherry Rustic Cherry
Similar in grain pattern to the standard Cherry hardwood above but has a tendency to contain much more grain variations, knots, and mineral marks giving rustic cherry a a style all of its own.  Rustic cherry will ripen over time like standard cherry.  It also has a much more color variation and contains more prominent sap wood.
 Amish-Brown-Maple Brown Maple
Brown maple has many of the same characteristics as standard hard maple.  It starts off the same creamy white color and has the same tight grain pattern as hard maple.  The main difference between the two is the hardness of the wood.  Brown maple is a softer wood and therefore easier to work with than hard maple.  Because of the softer hardness it is usually less expensive than hard maple.
 amish-hard-maple Hard Maple (Silver Maple)
When stained natural has a almost white or light gray color palette.  Hard maple, as the name implies is a strong, heavy, and hard wood that works great for gun cabinets.  Due to its light starting color hard maple has a wide palette of colors that it can be stained from natural whitish or dark.
 amish-natural-walnut Walnut
Walnut is a beautiful hard wood with a stunning dark brown to purplish color when stained naturally.  While mostly a straight grained hardwood Walnut occasionally has beautiful curly grains or burls.  The sapwood in walnut can be a creamy white to tan color.  Like cherry, walnut color can change naturally over time depending on the light in the area that the gun cabinet is being displayed.
 Amish-Hickory Hickory
Solid Hickory wood is a very hard, dense, and heavy hardwood with a reddish brown to yellow color variation.  Hickory has one of the largest color variations of color sometimes causing a stripe affect.
 Amish-Quarter-Sawn Quarter Sawn White Oak
White oak has a finer grain texture than red oak.  When White oak is quarter sawn is displays  what is called flake or fleck.  It is because of this decorative pattern that quarter sawn white oak is highly sought after for higher end and mission style gun cabinets.  While beautiful, quarter sawn boards also have greater stability and less cupping and shrinkage along the width of the board.
 Amish-Rustic-Quartersawn Rustic Quarter Sawn White Oak
Rustic quarter sawn white oak display many of the same characteristics of the standard quarter sawn but the rustic utilizes the boards that would other wise not be considered clean.  There are knots, pin holes, and more concentration of mineral streaks and strains.

There are many different characteristics which occur naturally in almost all of the solid hard woods:

  • Colors will vary even on the same piece of furniture.  Because of the beautiful grain patterns, mineral streaks, and sap boards the stain color will have varying shades throughout your custom gun cabinet.  On some gun cabinets the color can ripen over time depending on the hard wood you choose such as cherry or walnut.
  • Stain choice will influence the grain variation between the various boards in your cabinet. Some of the above pictures are clear coated only (no stain) and show the variety of variations that occur in that wood choice. Darker stains will tend to blend these variations.
  • There will be variations in grain patterns.  The different grain patterns that occur naturally in all of our Amish custom gun cabinet wood choices are what make the cabinet beautiful and unique.  Wood specified as “clear”…  as in “clear cherry” should have fairly straight grain, minimal color variation and be almost blemish free. “Rustic” woods will have some small, knots or pin knots that do not effect strength or structure and often a more swirly grain that infuses shadows into the final color.  No two gun cabinets will have the same grain pattern.
  • Your piece will need to be treated in different seasons to account for changes in heat and humidity throughout the year.  When the cold months are upon us and the weather is dryer we recommend oiling your furniture to help prevent the boards from shrinking too much. Wood can shrink, split, check, warp, and discolor without proper care.