Hi from Arkansas


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Hi guys, I've been lurking around this forum for some time and have learned a lot from you guys. My name is Stewart and I live in Arkansas, I grew up watching my dad woodworking and didn't pay much attention back then. Somewhere around age 40 I started thinking about learning about woodworking,and it has been a fun journey the past few years. I'm going to try to get past my shyness and chime in on some of the topics you guys discuss on here now that I'm not lurking anymore ha ha. Anyway thanks to all of you guys for sharing your knowledge, I've learned a lot on this forum.  Stewart 

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Never heard of him I'm afraid. So far I've just been buying cheap stuff from Lowes and Home Depot.




Oh, I'm going to make your day. He is open from 9-noon on Saturdays and is the best supplier around for hobbyists. His shop is right off of Hwy 107 in the Park Hill neighborhood of North Little Rock. Best lumber supplier around. They let you pick through the stack and will look over plans with you to help you find just the right board. Super high quality kiln-dried woods, I can't recommend the place highly enough.






Another few places vthat are good in the central AR area:



Urban Timbers in downtown Conway - loads of unique and highly figured boards. Live edge stuff, slabs. If you want one-of-a-kind, this is your place. If you want two-of-a-kind (as in enough lumber for a large uniform-looking project), go elsewhere, haha. The lumber sold here is all harvested locally as part of the owner's other business, a tree service, and is milled and dried in the owner's own facility - a solar kiln. Not as reliable as Steen for quality, but Urban Timbers has weird stuff like cottonwood and catalpa and other local trees that aren't traditionally available commercially. It's a cool place, well worth checking out.





Acadian Wood Products




This is a great supplier for large quantities. They don't let you pick through the stack or anything, but it's reasonably priced and they can get you as much as you need. They supplied the 8/4 ash I needed for the split-top Roubo project without a problem. Odd business hours, though - it's tough to make it over there because they are only open weekdays until about 4, and are closed on weekends.



Sunset Premium Hardwoods




This place is the last resort because of high prices, but their selection is unparalleled. Need jatoba? Bubinga? Ipe? Zebrawood? Lignum vitae? Mahogany? Purpleheart? Ebony? Basically anything else? They have it. It ain't cheap, but they have it.



Those are the reliable places in the Central AR area. There are a few more that won't deal with anyone that isn't a full-time professional, but the ones I listed here will keep you neck deep in sawdust if you want to be. :)


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I'll add to my last comment, too, that if you have only been working with softwoods, you're doing yourself a disservice. Softwoods are to Hardwoods as crayons are to oil paint. I started woodworking at about 19 and did a lot with softwoods and had myself convinced that I wasn't very good because nothing was working like it did in the videos I watched. I tried working with hardwoods and it was a night and day difference. Softwoods have their place, but they aren't simpler to work with just because they are less expensive. Give some hardwood projects a try.

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