In a world of filled with commodity wood, there remains a special niche for those lumbermen who deal in the finest grades of timber. The rarities of the wood world (the burls, the figured, the exotic, the delicate grained, the carefully seasoned) are reserved for the most exclusive wood projects and the most discriminating artisans.
Fine-hardwood dealer Rick Hearne travels the world locating these gems of nature. Once found, he ships these logs to his Pennsylvania lumber yard to be flitch-cut on the yard’s massive custom-built sawmill. Whether these trees are recovered from tropical hurricanes in South America, or salvaged from diseased trees that were felled on British estates, Rick always relishes the magic moment when he cuts them open to discover the beauty hidden within. In this video, Rick discusses how he can “read” trees (in this case, the English Wych Elm) in order to anticipate the potential secrets inside each log he purchases. For me, Rick’s enthusiasm for special woods was downright contagious. In this video, you too can experience the thrill of slicing open these massive gems of the forest. (4.5 Minute Woodworking Video)
Rick Hearne is President of Hearne Hardwoods in Oxford, Pennsylvania