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FAQ: What's 'spalted' wood?

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Spalting, which most often happens in dead trees, is caused by fungi. It affects the color of the wood, producing unique shades and intricate patterns.

Pale hardwoods -- such as maple, birch, beech and sycamore -- are most likely to spalt. Burls can spalt as well.

Spalted wood makes for attractive knife handles, of course. It must be stabilized before shaping.

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