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Author Topic:   What type of mahogany?
gnrgunner posted 06-11-2002 11:44 AM ET (US)   Profile for gnrgunner   Send Email to gnrgunner  
Rebuilding the interior of my 13' sport and I just flat out forget whether the original mahogany is honduras or phillipine. Which one is it?

Thanks for the help,

Whaler Proud posted 06-11-2002 11:55 AM ET (US)     Profile for Whaler Proud  Send Email to Whaler Proud     
gnrgunner: Most of the posts I have read in the repair forum have stated honduran. There are several types of mahogany that come under honduran or phillipine. Try doing a word search over the last two years and you'll get more information than you can imagine.
Tom W Clark posted 06-11-2002 12:19 PM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     

The wood could any of several different types of wood. Most likely it is what is called Philippine mahogany. This term is used to describe many different species of wood. There is no such thing as a Philippine mahogany tree.

You can read more about the wood used in Whalers in this thread:

Whaler Proud posted 06-11-2002 04:04 PM ET (US)     Profile for Whaler Proud  Send Email to Whaler Proud     
I've got to learn how to do the link thing like Tom.
Tom W Clark posted 06-11-2002 04:50 PM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     
Whaler Proud,

It's really terribly simple. Learn how here:

Whaler Proud posted 06-11-2002 04:58 PM ET (US)     Profile for Whaler Proud  Send Email to Whaler Proud     
aaaaargh!:) Thanks Tom. I'll study it tonight.
skred posted 06-12-2002 11:08 AM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     
I recreated my 13' console, and was told at the lumberyard that Philippine mahogany is not imported to the US as finished lumber. (Some sort of trade restriction) so Honduran was all that was available in 5/4. It worked out to look and behave identically.
Hobie1981 posted 06-12-2002 01:32 PM ET (US)     Profile for Hobie1981  Send Email to Hobie1981     
GNR: I don't know how much $$ you want to invest in your rebuild. I made up some repair pieces for my console for my Nauset, using "Lauan" plywood . It sometimes goes under the name Philippine. It's available at Home Depot in 1/4" and 3/4" sheets. I took the 1/4" and with H2O proof glue, made up some 1/2" plywood. The next two steps are really important: West System 105/207, and varnish with UV protectant. The West System will seal the plywood nicely, and the varnish will protect the WS. The 1/4" plywood costs $10-11 a sheet.I'll be redoing my entire woodwork next winter with marine grade mahogany, but the lauan repair was pretty cheap and looks pretty darn good also.

Just my two cents..


Tom W Clark posted 06-13-2002 02:00 AM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     

Your lumberyard is feeding you a bunch of bunk! Find a new yard.

Honduras mahogany is superior to Philippine mahogany. It also costs more. Nothing wrong with using Honduras mahogany (a real mahogany). It's actually an upgrade.

Lauan (a.k.a. Luan) is another term for Philippine mahogany. It is generally used only in the context of plywood. Again, there is no such thing as a Lauan tree. This label may be applied to as many as 200 different species of tropical hardwoods.

Regarding the cheapo stuff from the Home Depot, I would be very reluctant to use that stuff in a Whaler or any other boat for that matter. It is very low grade.

skred posted 06-13-2002 08:25 AM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     

If you check my posting, I said the lumberyard said there were import restrictions on Philippine Mahogany. They made no mention of one being better than the other. It's no wonder I was satisfied with the results, since Honduran is the better wood.

Tom W Clark posted 06-13-2002 10:09 AM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     

I should have made myself clear. That's bunk about the import restrictions.

gnrgunner posted 06-13-2002 11:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for gnrgunner  Send Email to gnrgunner     
Thanks for all of the input. I'm glad I asked here before going out to buy the wood. I am planning on using the wood build the larger ss console, using plywood templates that i have already made as guides for the process. Although I would like to spend the least amount of money possible, I am not looking to "cheap out" so to say by putting inferior wood in my boat. Has anyone had enough experience to say that one type looks better than the other after finishing? If need be, i will spend the extra money to get the wood that is right and will match my existing original mahogany.
Whaler Proud posted 06-13-2002 12:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for Whaler Proud  Send Email to Whaler Proud     
Go with the Honduran. Tom is correct in that "Phillipine Mahogany" is almost generic for a huge number of tropical hardwoods. The grain on Honduran is going to finish out much nicer, it will withstand the elements better (even though Home Depot says the Luan plywood is water resistant), and you will never regret using the Honduran.

I believe that you can get marine grade Honduran plywood (Tom can probably confirm this) and it may be more user friendly for what you plan to do. The cost may be considerably less than solid Honduran (I guess you could compare notes with skred on his 5/4 Honduran)and the performance of the plywood may actually be superior to the solid Honduran as far as acclimation of the wood goes.

I used 1/4" Home Depot Luan over a 5/8" plywood substrate for an inexpensive stern seat (similar to what Hobie did). I am pleased with how it looks, but as I continue the restoration of my '68, I will be going back to the Honduran, plywood or solid, depending on cost and performance.

Ed Z posted 06-13-2002 07:16 PM ET (US)     Profile for Ed Z  Send Email to Ed Z     
Another option (depending on the condition of the original wood) is to just vaneer the existing stuff... If it the wood is still sound (not rotted) then this may prove to be the cheaper but not compromising method... just be sure to use a good waterproof glue and get a good flat and hard rubber roller... Just my 2 cents...
gnrgunner posted 06-15-2002 11:17 AM ET (US)     Profile for gnrgunner  Send Email to gnrgunner     
Thanks to all who replied. The backgraound information was extremely helpful. However, I have since run into another problem - where can I buy the wood? I have contacted local lumberyards, home depot, and even online sites, all of which tell me that they cannot process small orders or do not stock mahogany. Any ideas?


Hobie1981 posted 06-15-2002 12:14 PM ET (US)     Profile for Hobie1981  Send Email to Hobie1981     
Brad: They are located in Somerville, MA, but ship world wide. Have you checked at your local boatyard where they get their wood from?
I purchased the honduran mahagony for my upcoming fall/winter '02-03 rebuild from them, as they are located 1/2 hour away. Pricey stuff. $85 for a 1/2" sheet, $125 for 3/4".

I am not an expert in plywood manufacturing. That stated, it's my understanding that using the west system or a similar product to "seal" the wood, will increase the performance of the product sustantually. The "lauan" plywood which I mentioned in my earlier post is one of the runts of the plywood litter. What's in it..who really knows ?? That said... who really cares, as long as it has the stregnth, durability, and aesthetics, that the boatowner is looking for.


Whaler Proud posted 06-15-2002 12:23 PM ET (US)     Profile for Whaler Proud  Send Email to Whaler Proud     
Try your search engine using "hardwoods", "hardwood suppliers", "honduran mahogany" or "woodworking". This should yield a large number of websites that sell directly in small quantities.

Also, try contacting suppliers who deal in salvaged lumber. While you will probably have to work salvaged mahogany a lot more, it is usually (depending on age)virgin cut and will have much better grain patterns and deeper color.

If all of the suggestions in this forum fail to turn up the size and quantities you want, you can always use the plywood for large areas and salvaged mahogany for trim pieces etc. I'd be glad to send you some pics of a console seat and stern seat I mad rather quickly this year out of luan and other woods that came out very nice.

Good luck. I have found that a large part of the pleasure in woodworking (and Whalers) is the search for what I need. You meet people (like all of the excellent ones here) that are willing to share knowledge, contacts and sometimes even hands on assistance.

tbirdsey posted 06-15-2002 01:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for tbirdsey  Send Email to tbirdsey     
gnrgunner, Don't know where you are in Mass., but here is a good source of hardwood in upstate NY - phillipine, honduras, and teak.

[url] [url]

tbirdsey posted 06-15-2002 01:47 PM ET (US)     Profile for tbirdsey  Send Email to tbirdsey     

Minke posted 06-16-2002 08:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for Minke  Send Email to Minke     

Did you look at or consider the Okoume mahogany plywood at Boulter? It is built to BS1088 standard which seems to be highly recommended by some wooden boat builders.
I don't know how it compares in price or appearance to the Honduras.


Whaler Proud posted 06-16-2002 08:27 PM ET (US)     Profile for Whaler Proud  Send Email to Whaler Proud     
Check this site out. The "Lyptus" wood is from another thread in the forum but may be of interest.

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