The Magic of Walnut Hardwood

The Magic of Walnut Hardwood

Has Wonderful Walnut Hardwood Cast its Spell over YOU?

First, some background. Eastern black walnut (Juglans nigra) is native to eastern North America (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juglans_nigra#/media/File:Juglans_nigra_range_map_1.png) and commercially important. It’s treasured for its rich and distinguished appearance; in particular, its distinctive brown coloration and its tight, straight grain pattern. Plus, despite its heft and durability, walnut wood can be easily worked, so it’s perfect for woodworkers to craft into fine furniture, cabinetry, flooring, ceiling paneling and countertops, for example.

Walnut is the second most popular North American hardwood

In terms of demand, Walnut trails only Maple – America’s favorite hardwood, due to its hardness and neutral colors, which make it complementary to almost any kitchen décor. Interestingly, the gap in demand between maple and walnut has been narrowing for years, despite the steadily-expanding price gap between America’s two most favorite hardwoods.

It’s almost as though Black Walnut hardwood has some mysterious power over humans, causing us to want it more even as we collectively drive its price higher.

Rising overseas demand for U.S. hardwood is also driving the cost of walnut higher.

Asian markets require a sustainable source of temperate hardwood

Temperate hardwood includes such species as ash, cherry, maple, oak and walnut. Thanks to careful stewardship of its forests – the U.S. grows more new hardwood each year than it harvests – the U.S. is able to supply rising worldwide demand. For perspective, it’s estimated that 60% of all hardwood lumber produced in the U.S. is exported, and that half of exports wind up in China.

Between 1992 and 2017, hardwood lumber exports to China ballooned from $8 million to $1.5 billion, according to the American Hardwood Export Council. China is the world’s largest producer of furniture, and 20 percent of the furniture that the Chinese manufacture is exported. Prior to 2008, China exported 80 percent of the furniture it made. The drop over time – from 80% to 20% – reflects China’s rising domestic demand and is yet more evidence of the country’s socioeconomic gains over the past decade.

Black Walnut’s Value

Black Walnut hardwood trees are typically worth $1000 and more. A pristine log, 26 inches in diameter and 16 feet long, can fetch up to $3,000, according to an article on the Iowa Department of Natural Resources website. Due to their rising valuations, Walnut trees are increasingly the target of tree thieves. Reports of walnut tree theft by unscrupulous loggers looking to make a quick profit are becoming a regular occurrence across the region where the species is common. Using a litany of excuses and suggesting myriad alleged misunderstandings, more and more frequently tree thieves are cutting down valuable walnut trees growing on private property without the prior permission of landowners. And of course, once a tree has been cut down, there’s no going back. Fortunately, states are recognizing the threat and enacting stiff penalties for such crimes.

What is your Walnut Tree Worth?

If you happen to have walnut trees on your property that you are considering selling, here are a few points to keep in mind.

Black Walnut hardwood is typically classified into two grades of quality – lumber-grade (more common) or veneer-grade (rarer). Veneer-grade wood is wood that can be sawn into thin slices, usually 1/8-inch thick and thinner, that are then glued onto other surfaces to impart a fine quality look and finish. To determine the grade of your tree, measure three things:

  • its diameter at 4-1/2 feet above the ground;
  • the height of its trunk up to its lowest limb; and
  • the number of major defects in the trunk.

In order to qualify as Grade A veneer, your tree will need to be at least 19 inches in diameter (60 inches in circumference). A black walnut tree that is Grade A-veneer at 19 inches diameter might sell for $700–$800. If you’re the patient type, you might consider waiting until the tree grows another 6 inches in diameter, when it might fetch twice as much.

More blogs on Walnut Hardwood:

Fast-Rising Demand Is Driving Black Walnut Lumber Prices to Record Highs

Walnut Butcher Block Tops

Walnut Butcher Block – Bring the Trend Home

Live Edge Table Project Featuring Wood Slabs from Created Hardwood Ltd.

Modern Rustic Kitchen Decor at Butcher Block Co.

Modern Rustic Kitchen Decor at Butcher Block Co.

Rustic meets modern at Butcher Block Co.! Modern rustic decor is very popular right now. It is often exemplified by a mix of natural materials including stone, wood and metal. In a kitchen this could be a combination of granite countertops, a wood farmhouse table or island top, and stainless steel appliances. See a variety of ways the charm of natural wood can make your modern rustic kitchen warm and welcoming.

Modern Rustic Hand Scraped Plank

You can make your own farmhouse table, island top or countertop by ordering a Butcher Block Co. brand edge grain or plank-style wood top. They are available in 15 different species of wood and a handful of finish options. Choose a hand scraped finish if you are looking for a more authentic distressed top.

Modern Rustic Table

Country style is definitely going urban! The addition of a country-style table in your kitchen is a simple way to go modern rustic. Consider a country work table with a painted base, available in dozens of sizes, colors and features. John Boos recently introduced their Rustic Country Table which features an Ash wood butcher block top. It incorporates numerous attributes that collectively convey a classic rustic character. Most striking is the tables top’s embossed texture that enhances its authentic and aged appearance. With a caramel colored stain, this table serves as a great accent piece in a modern rustic kitchen.

Rustic Modern Live Edge Slabs

Bring the outdoors into your home with a live edge wood slab. These authentic wood pieces can be transformed into a modern rustic countertop, kitchen island top, dining table, bench and more. Available in a variety of wood species and sizes, you are sure to find the perfect piece for your project. And for a limited time, we’re so certain you will love your live-edge slab we are offering a 30-Day No-Risk Trial. If you aren’t totally satisfied we will absorb the return shipping cost and waive the typical restocking fee, so you have absolutely nothing to lose!

Modern Rustic Island Top

The kitchen is often the the family gathering place and a butcher block island is the entertainment center of the kitchen.  Highly functional, kitchen islands are great for prepping food as well as serving appetizers and eating meals. Butcher block island tops are available in custom sizes in end grain, edge grain, blended grain and plank-style wood. Select from 15 different wood species.

Modern Rustic Apron Sink

Farmhouse sinks are all the rage, and John Boos butcher block countertops can be custom ordered from Butcher Block Co. with sink cutouts specifically for your apron sink, or for any top-mount or under-mount sink, for that matter. All we need is the model number of the sink and a drawing with countertop measurements.

Rustic Modern custom cutouts

Yes, we can do cutouts for stove tops as well! We do a lot of custom countertops to meet very detailed specifications. To get started, give us a call at 877-845-5597 and we can help you determine the best butcher block configuration for your kitchen remodel.

Modern Rustic Edge Cutting Board

Elements like a rustic edge cutting board can add a vintage accent to your modern kitchen. The Boos 1887 Collection of cutting boards hearkens back to the company’s inaugural year. The very first Boos Blocks were cut from solid blocks of Sycamore wood. Like those originals, these boards feature rustic edges created by Nature – each one slightly different from the next. Available in small, medium and large sizes, in maple, walnut or cherry wood.

If you’re going for a modern rustic look, or just want to add a little rustic charm, Butcher Block Co. has what you need! We hope you’ve been inspired to bring some natural elements into your home.

DIY Inspiration from our Butcher Block Co. Customers

DIY Inspiration from our Butcher Block Co. Customers

We are so inspired by the creativity of our DIY customers, that we wanted to share some of their work with you. We have recently received several photos of incredible DIY projects from some very handy customers. We hope you are moved to think outside the box and re-purpose something you already own, or even build something from scratch to make your own custom creation! We can help you customize just about any size top to fit your exact needs. Check out these amazing projects to get your creative DIY juices flowing!

Our DIY customer, Kaleb, designed and created the industrial style coffee table featured above. It is topped with a 4″ thick Maple End Grain Butcher Block. We love his mix of wood and steel, and the industrial style is certainly popular today. After his day job, Kaleb spends time in his workshop designing and building custom industrial style furniture and picture frames. “Making industrial furniture and construction is my release,” he says. “When you sit at a desk for 8 hours a day you need some sort of an artistic release…” Kaleb can build just about anything. His picture frames are large statement pieces usually 6 feet long. He uses wire rope, pad eyes, gears, chains, rivets, etc.. to give each piece an industrial feel. Check out this awesome portable island he made for his sister, which is a massive John Boos AA Block supported by the stainless steel frame he fashioned.

DIY Custom Island

Another happy customer, Karen, always wanted a long butcher block island in her kitchen, but could never find one that was long yet narrow enough for her space. She did have an existing console table that fit perfectly in her Savannah kitchen, so she decided to do-it-herself and make her own custom island featuring a Butcher Block Co. Cherry End Grain top  73″L x 18″W. Nicely done, Karen. If you can’t find it, DIY!

DIY Custom Cherry Console

DIY-er Elise, from Maryland, refinished the base of an old end table, added wheels, and topped it with a hefty 4.5″ thick hand-scraped Beech edge grain butcher block, creating this delightful kitchen island cart. Elise wrote us and shared her DIY story…”We had been using it (the table) as a stand for the printer in our home office before a remodel and it no longer fit with the new built ins. So, I was moving it to the basement for storage when I noticed it was the right width for a kitchen island (we have a strange kitchen and finding just the right thing has been problematic.) So I chalk painted and antiqued it, and added the wheels, and found your wonderful butcher block online. I am so pleased with the way it turned out. It is so nice having the extra workspace. And it looks so lovely. It really finished the room perfectly.”

DIY Custom Island Cart

If you have created a custom DIY project with one of our blocks, we would love to see it!

A DIY replacement of a top on something you already own is usually pretty easy, and is a great way to breathe new life into an old piece.

If you are in the market to upgrade some existing furniture or create your own masterpiece, we hope you’ve been inspired by these truly awesome projects, and we hope to help you along on your creative journey.

Looking for more inspiration? Check out these other DIY posts on our blog:

Custom Butcher Block Projects from Happy Customers

Butcher Block Co. Happy Customer Photos

Live Edge Table Project Featuring Wood Slabs from Created Hardwood Ltd

Reuse Project – Butcher Block Table

Happy Customers – Island Upgrades

Walnut Butcher Block Tops

Creative Uses for Butcher Block

Fast-Rising Demand Is Driving Black Walnut Lumber Prices to Record Highs

Fast-Rising Demand Is Driving Black Walnut Lumber Prices to Record Highs

Black Walnut – North America’s Most Valuable Wood – Nears a Tipping Point

Black Walnut – considered America’s premier timber for furniture making since the country’s founding – is enjoying such a surge in popularity that it now faces a crisis of affordability. Over the past several years, worldwide demand has jumped to levels never seen before. Since the U.S. does not grow enough of the trees to satisfy this rapidly expanding demand, walnut lumber prices are spiraling ever higher.

A recent price survey revealed that high-quality, two-inch-thick Black Walnut lumber was selling for $11 per board foot, making it 70% more expensive than Cherry – another American favorite; and double the price of Maple – America’s most popular hardwood. What drives Black Walnut’s appeal is its remarkable and variable coloration – a blend of cream, light yellow and medium-to-dark browns. The wood’s lighter colors trace to its sapwood – the outermost portion of a tree’s trunk, branches and stems; whereas the darker colors come from the tree’s heartwood (dead wood near its center).

Long considered America’s “go-to” choice for such high-end furniture, over the past several years, overseas manufacturers have discovered huge demand for American Black Walnut in their home markets. Plus, they are now importing walnut lumber from the U.S. and converting it into finished products, such as flooring, for exporting back to the United States.

Black Walnut is also gaining popularity within the interior design community.

Despite walnut’s higher prices, demand for the wood steadily increases. Designers and homemakers have always embraced natural wood countertops, but they really like the dark, rich and varied look of black walnut and they use it to top kitchen counters, islands and tables. Also, interest in live-edge walnut slabs is also on the rise. They can be made into rustic-looking countertops or spectacular tables for dining rooms or conference rooms.

One U.S. company that relies on a steady and abundant supply of walnut lumber every year is Illinois-based John Boos & Co. Boos converts black walnut, plus three other North American hardwoods – hard maple, cherry and red oak – into butcher block tops for kitchen counters and islands, dining and work tables, kitchen carts and cutting boards too. Last fall, Boos raised prices on walnut countertops by 9% – three times the increase they enacted on maple, cherry and oak countertops.

Asked whether he is concerned about the steady advances in walnut lumber prices since then, Ted Gravenhorst, Jr., Boos’ VP of Sales and Marketing, said, “Like any manufacturer, Boos hates to ever raise prices, but sometimes we simply have no choice. We continue to monitor the situation closely. Based on current trends, we can’t rule out the possibility of another walnut price change before the year is out. That’s almost unprecedented, but it gives you an idea of the wood’s rapidly growing popularity.”

Black walnut trees (species: Juglans nigra), which can be found throughout the central and eastern U.S., can grow to be 100 feet tall and three to four feet in diameter. Typically found as scattered lone specimens or in small isolated groups within hardwood stands, they account for only about 5 percent of U.S. hardwood forests in total. It takes almost a century for a black walnut tree to fully mature, making it worth tens of thousands of dollars. When the U.S. was first settled, these trees were so common that they were used as firewood, fence posts and even railroad ties. Today, they’re so valuable that they are sometimes the target of tree thieves!

This industry news update is presented by Butcher Block Co. For more information, please visit https://butcherblockco.com.

Contact Info:
Name: Kathleen Grodsky
Organization: Butcher Block Co.
Address: 10448 N 21st Pl Phoenix, Arizona 85028

 

Butcher Block Co. Happy Customer Photos

Butcher Block Co. Happy Customer Photos

We love getting customer photos showing off the new Butcher Block Co. countertops and furniture in their homes! Our feature photo above highlights Walter’s New York kitchen with a Butcher Block Co. brand maple edge grain countertop inset into his quartz island countertop. The blending of natural materials like wood and stone helps to showcase the individual textural and color differences. In Walter’s kitchen renovation, it resulted in a clean, bright, and modern space. Very trendy and gorgeous!

In the recent research report, Houzz 2018 U.S. Kitchen Trends Study, we discovered some other enlightening trends regarding homeowners renovating their kitchens:

  • Homeowners who are remodeling their kitchens are paying quite a bit of attention to countertops.
  • Countertops are the most common kitchen upgrade (94 percent), followed by sinks (89 percent) and backsplashes (88 percent).
  • And countertops are the top feature (at 42 percent) on which home renovators are willing to spend a little extra.
  • The U-shaped layout of kitchens is no longer the most popular option (32 percent), as the L-shaped layout has made a comeback over the last two years (35 percent).
  • Finally, the study revealed that 75 percent of renovating homeowners are obsessed with clutter-free countertops, preferring a more minimalistic appearance.

Our customers typically order butcher block tops to serve as either kitchen island tops or kitchen countertops. Our John Boos custom tops can be ordered with stove and sink cutouts, scrap hole cutouts, miter cuts and angle cuts.  Other creative uses for our butcher block tops include laundry room counters, office desks, table tops, bar tops, workshops and more. (Check out our blog for other Creative Uses for Butcher Block).

John Boos countertops come in standard and custom sizes, in four species of wood: Maple, Walnut, Cherry and Oak. The most popular grain styles are edge and blended grain, but traditional end grain is available, too.

Butcher Block Co. brand countertops are custom made to your dimensions and offer you 15 different wood species from which to choose! They are also available in end and edge grain, but the most trendy selection is plank-style tops.

Watch our Happy Customer Photo Short Video

Visit our Happy Customer Photos Gallery to learn more about the butcher block you see below.
customer photos

Butcher Block Co. Adds Live-Edge Wood Cutting Boards in Time for Holidays

Butcher Block Co. Adds Live-Edge Wood Cutting Boards in Time for Holidays

Press Release – Butcher Block Co. Adds Live-Edge Cutting Boards

E-tailer Butcher Block Co. announced this week the addition of live-edge cutting boards to its online store catalog. These boards – available in either maple or walnut – will be supplied by Created Hardwood, LTD. In September BB Co. began selling live-edge table tops reclaimed and refinished by Created Hardwood, headquartered in Central Ohio.

Kathleen Grodsky, Vice President of Marketing & Operations for Butcher Block Co., explained, “The decision to expand into live-edge cutting boards was based on overwhelmingly positive customer reaction to Created Hardwood’s live-edge wood slab table tops we began offering in September. Natural-edge slabs large enough to serve as tops for kitchen or dining room tables can cost in the thousands, pricing many consumers out of the market. But everyone needs and uses wood cutting boards. Some smaller boards are priced under $100 – well within the budget for most consumers. So now, even households living within modest means will have the chance to see and experience first-hand the natural beauty of live-edge wood slabs.”

Brothers Phil and Jon Hicks, along with their father, recently founded Created Hardwood Ltd. In response to consumers’ yearning for simpler things and a return to Nature. As Phil Hicks points out, “Today, mass production is almost anathema. In contrast, each live-edge board is truly unique – a genuine one-of-a-kind creation. You can’t help but closely inspect a live-edge board, which exhibits the bare exterior of a tree once its bark is removed. In a way, it represents a small sampling of Nature. Not only that, you can make good use of it in preparing and serving meals. How can you beat that?” Hicks queried?

About Butcher Block Co. – BB Co. is a leading online distributor of John Boos butcher block products, such as countertops; kitchen islands, tables and carts; cutting boards and chopping blocks. The e-tailer also carries Boos’ commercial line of steel kitchen equipment, plus rolling kitchen islands made by Catskill Craftsmen and assorted specialty items, including knives, knife blocks and serve ware made by niche manufacturers.

For more information, please visit https://butcherblockco.com

Contact Info:
Name: Kathleen Grodsky
Organization: Butcher Block Co.
Address: 10448 N 21st Pl Phoenix, Arizona 85028

Reuse Project – Butcher Block Table

Reuse Project – Butcher Block Table

America Recycles Day is November 15th. In honor of this day, and in the spirit of doing whatever we can every day to help our earth, we have embarked on a project to reuse some damaged butcher block.

Reuse is the practice of using something again, whether for its original purpose or to fulfill a different function.

We acquired some large commercial butcher block tops that were damaged in shipping. When they were returned to us they were extremely beat up and would have been destined for scrap. But not in this house! I would say we have great vision and can see value in many things other folks discard. This 8′ x 4′ x 2.25” Edge Grain Maple Butcher Block had gouges, cracks and scuff marks, yet we knew it could be given new life.

butcher block countertop

Concept – Butcher Block Bar Height Table

My son, Ben, is now in his senior year at ASU majoring in Industrial Design. One of his projects this summer was to research and design kitchen islands. He came up with a unique design for a bar height kitchen island made with angle iron, rebar and butcher block. He calls this industrial style island the “Truss Table.” We knew we could reuse this damaged butcher block to serve as the top and base of his new table.

Butcher Block Truss Table

Step One – Prep the butcher block.

The first step was to repair the cracked butcher block. Using gorilla glue and bar clamps we successfully pulled the laminated rails back together. Then using the table saw, we cut the large butcher block down to the desired size for the 72″ x 36″ table top and the beams to make the base. Given the damage on the top was significant, we ran the butcher block through a surface sander. Then we finished sanding by hand with an orbital sander using 80 grit to 150 grit paper. All edges were then eased.

Butcher Block cut

Step Two – Build the frame and base.

This was the first time Ben welded and he taught himself while welding the frame together. He cut the angle iron legs to size and all metal was sent to be powder coated in black matte.  While that was being done, he then built the wood foot rest/base of the table. To create the “truss design” with the rebar, a special jig was made to make certain the angles drilled into the base and table top lined up correctly.

Butcher Block Pieces

Step Three – Stain and Finish the wood.

Hard Rock Maple has a very tight grain and is difficult, if not impossible, to stain…or so I thought. However, we discovered a product called a “dye stain” that works extremely well. This product is water based and only required one coat to give this blonde maple top a rich cherry color. The only thing we noticed was that it raised the grain a bit, which we dealt with during finishing. Our new favorite top coat is General Finishes brand Arm-R-Seal Oil and Urethane Top Coat.  We applied a coat and let it dry. Then we used 0000 steel wool over it to help smooth the raised grain. We repeated this 2 more times, with finish and steel wool. The final coat (4th top coat) was then applied (do not steel wool over the last coat). The resulting top was as smooth as glass!

Butcher Block stain

Dye Stain and finish

Step Four – Assemble the table.

Given the table was designed to spec in Solid Works, prior to building, when it came to assembly, it was straightforward and only took one hour to assemble completely!  Ben would agree, that designing and building your own table may not pay much given all the hours it takes, but the satisfaction in creating a one-of-a-kind table is well worth it.  And we reused butcher block that would have been wasted and reused angle iron and rebar from the scrap yard. A job well done!

Maple Butcher Block Kitchen Island

BONUS – Maple Butcher Block Work Bench.

A second butcher block arrived totally broken in half down its length. We were able to reuse the smaller piece and transform it into a workbench 8′ x 2′. A chamfer edge and urethane top coat made this workbench good enough to eat off of!

Butcher Block Workbench

Read our other Creative Reuse/Recycling Blogs:

https://butcherblockco.com/blog/creative-reuse-projects/

https://butcherblockco.com/blog/upcycling-creative-reuse/

https://butcherblockco.com/blog/creative-uses-butcher-block/

https://butcherblockco.com/blog/reduce-reuse-recycle-everyday/

Butcher Block Co. Adds Live Edge Table Tops to Its Online Catalog

Butcher Block Co. Adds Live Edge Table Tops to Its Online Catalog

Supplier Created Hardwood™ Refinishes Live Edge Wood Slabs from Seven Different Varieties of Trees

This week, Butcher Block Co., a leading online retailer of wood countertops and kitchen furniture and accessories announced it has added to its catalog live edge wood slabs for use as table and counter tops. These wood slabs, salvaged from downed trees and refinished by Created Hardwood LTD in Central Ohio, typically feature live edges on both long edges of each slab to deliver a hyper-natural look.

“Furniture with live or natural edges is gaining popularity among both interior designers and homeowners,” says Phillip Hicks, a cofounder of Created Hardwood. “Nothing showcases the natural beauty of wood better than live edges, so furniture designers and woodcrafters are finding ways to incorporate them into furniture of all types – dining room tables, coffee tables, headboards, desks, you name it,” Hicks explained.

Until now, Created Hardwood has principally relied on furniture stores and countertop installers to get their live edge table and counter tops into homes and businesses. Seeking to tap into the rapidly growing online furniture market, Phil and his brother Jon Hicks – also a company cofounder – searched for an established E-commerce business already selling wood table and counter tops. The brothers’ search led them to Butcher Block Co. – a destination site for buyers of butcher block counter and island tops and kitchen and dining tables.

“Created Hardwood typically has over 100 slabs available for sale at any time,” boasts Jon Hicks. “Over half of all slabs on hand are maple, and our second most popular species is walnut. We also carry slabs of ash, cherry, sycamore, pin oak and willow. Most slabs are between five and eight and a half feet long, typically two to four feet wide and about two inches thick,” he continued.

Created Hardwood also offers metal bases for their live edge wood-slab table tops. Shoppers have eleven models to choose from, in designs that span traditional, classic and contemporary styles. The underside of the wood slab will come with holes pre-drilled, making assembly easier. Hardware is included.

BBC’s Marketing & Operations Vice President, Kathleen Grodsky, feels that Created Hardwood’s products are an excellent fit with BBC and market trends.

Demand for live edge wood furnishings continues to grow, in part because each item is unique. Our customer will be able to match any one of dozens of one-of-a-kind slabs with any of eleven different table bases, so there’s virtually no chance he or she will ever encounter a table that looks exactly like his or hers.

According to Ms. Grodsky, BBC will also promote Created Hardwood’s metal table bases for use as supports beneath John Boos butcher block tops, as well as BBC-brand butcher block and plank-style tops.

For more information, please visit https://butcherblockco.com

Contact Info:
Name: Kathleen Grodsky
Organization: Butcher Block Co.

John Boos & Co. Opens a New $16-Million Illinois Wood Plant

John Boos & Co. Opens a New $16-Million Illinois Wood Plant

Butcher Block Maker John Boos & Co. Celebrates Triple Milestones

Boos Commemorates the Making of Boos Block Number 13,000,000 in the Company’s 130th Year, Plus the Opening of a New $16-Million Illinois Wood Plant

At 3pm CDT on Tuesday, August 29th, former and current Boos & Co. staff members and local dignitaries congregated in Effingham, Illinois to mark the making of the thirteen millionth Boos butcher block. Since 1887 Boos has been manufacturing such butcher block products as countertops, kitchen islands, dining and work tables, rolling carts and cutting boards in this Central Illinois community.

Several years ago, when Boos had to decide where to build its new, state-of-the-art wood products manufacturing plant, it wasn’t a difficult decision, according to company President, Joe Emmerich. “We are committed to making our products right here, where we were founded,” he exclaimed.

Boos & Co. has been doing business in Effingham continuously since 1887. That’s the year in which Conrad Boos, the father of John, after whom the company is named, created the first of what would eventually be called butcher blocks. The elder Boos processed a slab of Sycamore wood at the family sawmill and mounted it on three wooden legs, creating a sturdy work table for his blacksmith shop. When a local butcher saw Conrad’s creation, he requested one for his meat shop. Young John Boos accommodated the butcher’s request and started a new American industry. Although the new wood plant is lightyears more technologically advanced than its predecessor, the manufacturing processes Boos employs are largely unchanged from those Conrad and John Boos developed 130 years ago.

The company’s new wood plant encompasses 116,000 square feet – larger than two football fields – and sits on a 27-acre campus that also houses Company headquarters and a modern manufacturing facility where Boos makes work tables, enclosed base cabinets and commercial sinks, all made of stainless steel and mostly destined for commercial food service establishments. Noting Boos’ significance to the town and the region, Effingham’s mayor, Jeff Blemaker, declared in a company release, “The impact John Boos has had on the Effingham area economy is immeasurable.”

This industry news update is provided by Butcher Block Co. – a leading online dealer of John Boos residential and commercial products, including wood and steel countertops; butcher blocks; butcher block tables, islands, carts and cutting boards; and stainless steel tables, enclosed base cabinets and commercial sinks.

For more information, please visit https://butcherblockco.com

Contact Info:
Name: Kathleen Grodsky
Organization: Butcher Block Co.

Butcher Block Co. Loves Hard Maple, Also Used To Make Bowling Lanes and Pins!

Butcher Block Co. Loves Hard Maple, Also Used To Make Bowling Lanes and Pins!

National Bowling Day is celebrated this week, with most activities held on the second Saturday of August, which is August 12th this year.

If you’re in the know, you likely know that we all owe a debt of gratitude to the Egyptians alive circa 3200 BC for inventing the pastime. They employed “balls” made of the husks of grains bound together with strands of various ancient plants, and later balls made of porcelain.

Fast forward to the 1880s. That’s when Brunswick Corporation began making bowling balls, pins, and wooden lanes and selling them to local tavern owners seeking ways to entice patrons to spend more time onsite. But it wasn’t until the 1950s that the Golden Age of Ten-Pin Bowling hit full stride and professional bowlers earned incomes rivaling those of other sports professionals.

Bowling Lanes Are Made of Soft Pine and Hard Maple

Why, you might wonder, does any of this interest Butcher Block Co. and its loyal followers? Here’s why. Not only are bowling lanes constructed of hard rock maple – one of our favorite North American hardwoods and the most popular of them all – so too are bowling pins.

Think about it: bowling lanes are subjected to repeated physical abuse, day in and day out. Consider the fact that the typical bowling ball – made of polyurethane and an outer layer of resin that reduces bounce and allows the ball to roll smoothly – weighs as much as 16 pounds and is hurtled through the air and onto the lane from heights as high as five feet. It’s only natural to wonder, what type of material can possibly endure such abuse?

While some bowling alleys are made of synthetic materials, authentic lanes are comprised of wood – typically pine and maple. Pine, a softwood, is used for much of the lane – the section between the ball landing zone and the pin deck. The approach, landing zone and pin deck are made of maple, however. Maple is used at the front and back of the bowling lanes simply because it’s so durable (hard and dense). Maple is better able to withstand the force of heavy balls dropped on it, as well as the stress on the far end from heavy wooden pins being flung against it.

Bowling Pins Are Made of Hard Maple, Too!

See bowling pins as well, are crafted out of rugged maple blocks that are turned on lathes to be transformed into the classic, iconic bowling-pin shape before being coated with plastic and finished with a high-gloss lacquer paint.

So What Should You Do to Celebrate National Bowling Day?

Obviously, get out and bowl a game or two, preferably with others, since some among us look askance at solo bowlers, sometimes disparagingly called “sowlers.” Better yet, get the whole gang together and try some “rock and roll” bowling or midnight bowling. There’s no better way to honor the sport and friends at the same time. If you have not bowled lately, you will be amazed at what a modern bowling alley has to offer…large screen TVs everywhere, music videos, sports channels, colorful lights, automated scoring, and more!