I just bought a fantastic piece of figured maple, priced the same as regular maple. What a find! Where'd I got it is the best part.
I got it at one of my local Big Box stores, one of the blue-flavored ones. No, really. I needed a piece of 1x12 pine, and after fishing around in the bin of eight-footers I finally found one that wasn't either twisted like a pretzel or filled with knots and checking. As I'm walking past the other bins heading toward the checkout, I see an 8-foot piece of 1x8 tiger maple in the maple rack. I didn't even realize they carried maple; up to now the only hardwoods I've seen there are red oak, poplar, and sometimes aspen. Carrying maple must be something new.
But the truly amazing part of this is that I wasn't even really paying attention. I was just juggling that 8-foot 1x12, and that tiger maple was so visually striking that I literally caught it out of the corner of my eye as I was walking past. Naturally, I stopped to look it over. Turns out there were about 20 or so pieces of 1x8 in the 8-foot bin, and three or four of them had some decent figure. Not as good as the one I grabbed - I did mention that I grabbed that sucker, right? - but not bad.
And the story gets even better. That board is perfectly straight and true, without a single blemish of any kind. None. As I'm thanking the lumber gods for my good fortune, I spotted another in the bin of 10-foot 1x2s with the same extreme tiger figure so I snatched it up, too.
I have no need of these at the moment, but the same boards at any other wood supplier where they'd price them specifically as tiger maple would probably have been up to double or more of what I paid for them: $37 for both. So I'll store them till I have a project for them.
On today's agenda: Digging around my credit card file for a card with not too big of a balance on it, and then checking out the other two blue-flavored Big Boxes near me.
Till next time,