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Kyle, Thanks for the hardness, strength info on the different woods.
By the way, I used to live on the gulf coast of Fla, and altho many of the massive live oaks were gone due to them being the main source for ship keels during the civil war, there are still plenty of large trees left. Just go down after a hurricane and the folks will pay you to haul them off. Most times they are just cut up for firewood. There aren't too many 60" dia left except around Suwannee, and most of the communities have restrictions against cutting down any over 15" dia, But, after a storm, the downed ones are free game, and a lot of them are up to 30". It is one tough wood. Even after a couple of years, you won't split it a 24" length of 8" dia by hand with anything less than a 16 lb maul and a couple of wedges to boot! DIdn't have time for woodworking down there. Sure wish I would have brought some of that up here now!!.
Question: I have two water oaks and one red oak in my yard, all about 60' tall, that I need to cut down as they threaten the new house (red oak dead since last summer due to lightening, and the others have the roots cut off by the contractor when he was building the house. I don't want a couple tons of tree in my bedroom if we get a good storm this summer) Is water oak the same as red oak as far as lumber is concerned?

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Re: Purpleheart

There are two groups of Oaks, the white and the red. Quercus alba is White Oak, but there are many other species that are considered in the white Oak group. Quercus rubra/coccinea are Red Oak but again there are many species that are considered in the red Oak group. Quercus nigra, Water Oak is considered in the red Oak grouping. So yes, it is a "Red Oak" and should be treat as such.:) I look forward to " Cliff Clavin's" assessment of your question.

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