The heartwood is a rich purplish-brown shade. In most cases, wood from less mature trees has a chocolate-brown tint. The narrow sapwood is nearly white.
The wood has a mild persistent odor. The texture is moderately coarse but uniform. Black walnut produces a greater variety of figure types than any other
tree including crotches, swirls, stumpwood, stripe, ribbon, mottle and snail and occasional burls. Black walnut is a strong wood with more than adequate
properties for its usual uses. For many purposes it is stronger than white oak.
The timber works with ease in all hand an machine tool processes. The wood leaves the sander with an excellent surface and worked edges remain sharp. The
species is excellent for turnery, spindle molding, routing and carving. Drilling, mortising and similar operations cause no problems. There is very little
tendency to split when using nails or screws. It finishes to a velvety sheen but requires filling due to the open grain. Glues adhere satisfactorily, and the
wood stains uniformly.
Black walnut is the foremost American wood for cabinetwork.
It is superior to all other woods for gunstocks because it keeps its shape,
is light weight and absorbs recoil better than any other wood. If finds
much use as fine figured veneers and cabinets, furniture, novelties and