Black Walnut Lumber
The rich warm beauty and supreme workability of black walnut wood make it the king of North American hardwoods. At North Castle Hardwoods, we offer slow-growth premium walnut lumber, with a consistent color and texture that is second to none.
Black walnut wood is famous for its luxurious color that can range from medium chocolate to dark seal brown. Our walnut lumber is carefully steamed at optimal temperature and kiln dried to attain excellent color. Black walnut has fine even grain that often includes captivating figure patterns.
Black walnut is a very stable wood. Finished products made of walnut lumber won’t warp or shrink much compared to items made from some other woods. This stability makes black walnut one of the easiest lumbers to machine. It’s a delight to work with, whether you’re using power tools or hand tools.
Weighing about 3.3 pounds per board foot, black walnut has medium weight and density – but excellent impact resistance. This is why it’s such a popular choice for gun stocks and tool handles.
Black walnut is also known as eastern black walnut or American walnut, and by the species name Juglans nigra.
What is Black Walnut Lumber Used For?
Although black walnut takes stress well, it’s not as hard as oak or ash. For this reason, plus the fact that it’s such a treat for the eyes, black walnut is used in fine woodworking or even artistic crafts more often than for applications that are solely practical.
Great uses of walnut wood include:
- Furniture – Walnut is gorgeous in tabletops, dressers, chairs, benches, and headboards.
- Cabinetry – including both kitchen cabinets and bathroom vanities.
- Paneling and wall coverings – Walnut adds natural warmth to a home.
- Hand carving and artistic projects – This wood’s fine grain and commanding presence make it a joy to handle.
- Musical instruments – especially popular for acoustic guitars.
- Fine crafts – Walnut's high stability means it won't warp in intricate projects like picture frames, jewelry boxes, trivets, cutting boards, or charcuterie boards.
- Boatbuilding – Although less common today, black walnut was traditionally used in marine applications because of its rot resistance.
- Turning – Walnut's attractive grain makes it a popular choice for wood-turned projects like pen blanks, salt and pepper shakers, or furniture legs.
- Steam Bending – It’s also one of the best woods for steam bending!
What Kind of Walnut Can You Buy?
At North Castle Hardwoods, we offer our premium black walnut boards in a variety of sizes to match your project needs.
You can buy our carefully steamed and precision-dried walnut wood in 4/4 and 5/4 thicknesses, plus thick stock 6/4 and 8/4 boards. We also are one of the few companies to offer top-grade walnut thin stock in 1/2”, 1/4” and 1/8” sizes. This thin stock is perfect for detailed craft work as well as architectural uses and furniture making.
We offer all our standard and thin stock walnut lumber dimensioned to widths ranging from 3” to 6.5” and lengths ranging from 18” to 48”. This broad range of sizes means you can select the perfect boards for your project and we will ship them to your door, packaged carefully and ready to use.
Our S4S walnut squares are available in 4/4, 5/4, and 6/4 dimensions. These are typically used as turning blanks.
Our premium black walnut is also available in lumber packs. Contact us for a custom quote.
Tips for Working With Black Walnut Lumber
American walnut takes stains and finishes very well. We recommend using an oil finish to intensify the beauty of the natural grain and color. Resurfacing is also easier oil finishes. Items made from walnut wood will lighten in color when exposed to sunlight for a length of time. If you’d like to prevent or reduce this color shift, you can apply a polyurethane finish with UV protection. Or, depending on the item made of walnut, you may be able to resurface your walnut piece to restore the original rich color of the wood.