Bird number: 47
Date: March 5, 2012
Wood: Jobillo (Astronium graveolens)
Jobillo grows in Central and South America: from the Yucatan in Mexico to as far south as Bolivia. Some sources say that Jobillo can be either Astronium graveolons or Astronium fraxinifolium. Others say that A. fraxinifolium is called Goncalo alves. The Wood Explorer Database entry for Astronium graveolons implies that Goncalo alves and Jobillo are the same thing. It’s possible that both are called Tigerwood, too. Which would make sense, as it does have stripes that approximate black and orange.
This kind of thing isn’t uncommon, by the way. It’s very often difficult to map a common name to a botanical name.
This Jobillo is one of the woods that Debra gave me as a Christmas gift. It’s very dense, and quite hard. I didn’t even try to carve it with a knife. The power carver didn’t exactly have trouble with it, but I could tell that the wood was a lot harder than black walnut, for example. It does look nice when finished, though.
Those pictures really are of the same piece of wood, taken at the same time under the same lighting conditions. The camera decided to use its flash on the top one, but not on the bottom one. The image on the bottom more accurately reflects the real color of the wood.
What looks like scratches on the breast in the top picture are actually cracks in the wood. I thought they were scratches, too, but the more I sanded them the longer they got. It looks like this block of wood wasn’t quite dry yet. I hope the cracks don’t get any larger.
Like most of the exotics I’ve been working with, Jobillo is a popular turning wood, but not so popular for carving. Leaves more for me, I guess. I’ll definitely carve it again.