Alder Wood, Any Good?
17 replies to this topic
Posted 02 December 2011 - 03:37 AM
Has anyone used this wood for jointed swimbaits
With good results. I have leftovers from a old project and was wondering if it would make a good swimbait. I like how light it is but seems soft and unsure if it would hold the eye screws well.
Posted 02 December 2011 - 12:40 PM
I don't know anything about that particular type of wood, but it would be real easy to test it. Just install a screw eye of the size you plan on using to make your swimbaits and hang it up with some weight added to it. You can keep adding weight until it finally fails and if it compares favorably to the wood you've been using then you'll have your answer.
Posted 02 December 2011 - 02:14 PM
Fender builds lots of guitars with Alder, especially those which receive opaque paint. They favor Ash when the grain shows through. To the point, the weight of Alder guitar bodies can vary some so you can bet that the density varies somewhat too.
Posted 02 December 2011 - 03:40 PM
The nominal density of alder in a list I found is 26-42 lbs/cu ft, so it varies more than most woods. The most dense wood I regularly use is basswood, with a nominal density of 23 lbs/cu ft. But a very light piece of alder in the 26 lbs/cu ft range would probably work OK. Can't comment on the screw holding ability of the wood.
Posted 02 December 2011 - 08:30 PM
I've used it for paint grade cabinetry, because the grain is not pronounced, and it is soft and easy to tool.
I wouldn't try it for swimbaits, because I think it is too soft.
Have you done any jobs with PVC decking?
Edited by mark poulson, 02 December 2011 - 08:31 PM.
Posted 03 December 2011 - 12:49 AM
I havent tried pvc yet, its a pain to find locally. How about plain old pine, is it durable?
Im only asking because i made a prototype 4 piece swimbait out of pine and its just awsome, swims perfect. I wanna make alot, for myself friends and family members but before i start i want to make sure i pick the right wood. As of now im ruling out alder as it is really soft and gets dented easilly. So now im thinking pine or poplar.
Posted 03 December 2011 - 12:55 AM
JMHO, if you have a bait that does exactly what you want, go with it. Changing wood is a big change and may require "starting from scratch" on some of the bait's features.
Posted 03 December 2011 - 09:51 AM
PM me and I'll try to help you find some of the AZEK trimboard I use. It is as buoyant as pine, and harder, and holds hardware just fine. Plus it is easy to work, with no grain to worry about.
Posted 03 December 2011 - 12:47 PM
Mark is that stuff simalar to the smartboard products for exterior window batons ad such or the maintnance free decking?
Posted 03 December 2011 - 04:15 PM
I'm not familiar with smartboard products, but AZEK is totally maintenance free and waterproof.
Posted 04 December 2011 - 08:10 AM
Both Lowe's and Home Depot carry it down here in SoCal.
AZEK has a website with a dealer locator, and it is distributed by Boise Cascade.
Posted 13 December 2011 - 12:05 PM
Hey mark, i tried calling several lowes and home depot with no luck, i guess the I.E. is not a good place to find this stuff. Finally ordered it online and will get it soon, cant wait to try it out. Thanks for recommending it.
Posted 13 December 2011 - 12:43 PM
I'm surprised they don't carry it out there. It's easily available here. Weird.
Glad you found some.
One danger I forgot to mention is you'll make a lure, take it out to test it unpainted, catch a fish, and never paint it, so your painting skills will slip from not being used.
Not to sound like a broken record, but be sure to use a dust mask when you're machining and sanding the AZEK. The dust kills my sinuses.
Posted 13 December 2011 - 03:35 PM
I found that AZEK trim on the Lowe's website - quick question: from the picture it looks like it has a simulated wood grain on one side. Is that the case, or is it smooth? If it's not smooth what do you do, just sand it out flat? Plane it? Here's the link I was looking at.
Posted 14 December 2011 - 10:37 AM
That's the stuff.
I usually use the tablesaw or the bandsaw or the belt sander to remove it, depending on how thick I want the matl. for my lure.
In the past, when I had a bunch to remove, I used a surface planer, but now I just cut up the rectangular lure blanks, trace the outline of the lure onto the smooth backside, and cut it out on the bandsaw. If I'm making some thinner lures, like 1/2" , I'll rip it down on the table saw while it's still rectangular, before moving to the bandsaw for profiling.
My ocillating beld sander, with a 50 grit belt, eats that PVC up pretty fast, so removing the texture is no big deal, once I've got it profiled on the bandsaw, and I've refined/smoothed the profile on the sander.
I do mostly free hand shaping with the sander from there, so I use a compass to mark a centerline all around the lure, and maybe hand mark the shape with a pencil, and then I use the sander to shape the lure.
Posted 14 December 2011 - 02:09 PM
Thanks for the reply. Just makin' sure I didn't get a, "Oh, you'd didn't buy the textured stuff, did you?" before I tried it out.