Oak dowels can be produced from White Oak or Red Oak with the characteristics and uses
as outlined below. Oak trees grow throughout the world and are referred to with a
variety of names.
White Oak sapwood is honey gold in color, but the heartwood is a dark brown.
White oak is dense with coarse open grain. It is very strong and hard, but with good steam bending properties. It machines, nails and screws well, and takes a good finish.
Coopers producing barrels for aging whiskey, wine and spirits will sometimes use dowels as pins in their barrel construction. In addition, some martial arts weapons are produced from White Oak dowels.
The sapwood of red oak is white to light brown, while its heartwood is pinkish to red brown.
Red oak is heavy and hard with a high shock resistance. The wood is mostly straight-grained with a classic coarse texture that is popular with consumers. It takes stain and finishes beautifully. The wood can have a moderate blunting effect on cutting surfaces, so sharp tooling is recommended.
Red oak dowels are used to make furniture and architectural items such as spindles, stair plugs and newel posts as well as, turned knobs and toy parts. Large diameter Red Oak dowels can also be used for ballet barres, closet dowels and curtain rods.