Bog Oak is one of the world’s rarest and sought-after species of wood. Bog Oak originates from tree trunks that have started to fossilize in peat bogs, lakes, river bottoms, and swamps for centuries and even millennia.
Deprived of oxygen, the wood undergoes a slow morta-formation process, where water currents help bind earthly minerals and iron with tannins in the wood, giving the wood a natural, beautiful stain, unlike anything else.
Over thousands of years, this maturation process turns the wood from golden brown to completely black while making it so hard, that it can only be worked with special machinery and very sharp hand tools.
It is usual at the end of the drying process to have removed from the timber a staggering 3.2 gallons of water per cubic foot, which is over 50% of the trees original volume, and each plank reduces its width and thickness by one third.
The challenge of drying Bog Oak is to extract these huge amounts of water and incur such a degree of shrinkage whilst maintaining a flat straight and split free board.
Luckily I am able to source this wonderful material in great condition from time to time. My source has had his stock carbon dated and most of it is around 5000 years old!
Using bog oak is definitely a bold statement and one I find very pleasing for a set of speaker baffles. Finished in many coats of matt oil wax it has a way of absorbing light that few woods can match. At the same time as being able to absorb light it can also reflect light under certain angles almost as a mirror.
Bog oak is usually quarter sawn as this is when it is at its most stable. I think this is when it is at its most beautiful too as this is when we get to see the medullary rays which add their own sparkle.
For those who wish to learn more about bog wood please follow this link