Maple vs Walnut Wood | Which One is Best for Your Project?


Maple (Acer) is a large genus (about 132 species) of shrubs or trees in the family Sapindaceae. About 70-80 species of maple are found in Asia and the rest of the species are found in Europe, Northern Africa, and North America. 

Some famous maple species names are Red Maple (Acer rubrum), Field Maple (Acer campestre), Florida maple (Acer floridanum), Silver Maple (Acer saccharinum), Sycamore maple (Acer pseudoplatanus), Black maple (Acer Nigrum), Norway maple (Acer platanoides), etc.

Maple wood looks great, strong, stable, and Durable. However, these properties are found differently in different species of maple. It is widely used to make quality furniture, flooring, cabinetry, kitchen platform, Pulpwood, craft, and more.


Walnut (Juglans) is a nut tree of the genus Juglans (family Juglandaceae). Seeds are referred to as walnuts. Nuts are most commonly used as food. It is native to North and South America, southern Europe, Asia, and the West Indies. There are about 21 species of walnut. The properties of these species are almost the same.

Some walnut species are Black Walnut (Juglans nigra), Butternut (Juglans Cinerea), Brazilian Walnut (Juglans australis), California Black Walnut (Juglans californica), English Walnut (Juglans regia), and many more.

Walnut is famous for its light brown to a dark chocolate color. It is mainly used to make quality furniture, flooring, gunstocks, carvings, etc.

#    MapleWalnut
Scientific nameAcerJuglans
Tree Height40 to 60 feet tall and 35 to 45 feet wide70 to150 feet tall and 30 to 40 feet wide
Wood colorWhite with some reddish-brown hueslight brown to a dark chocolate color
Workability and FinishingEasy to work and finishing wellEasy to work and finishing well
DurabilityGreat Great
Wood TypeHardwoodHardwood
UsesFurniture, flooring, cabinetry, veneersFurniture, flooring, carving, gunstocks

Maple vs Walnut Wood Uses

Wood is used on the basis of its physical properties. Several species of walnut and maple are available. Each species has its own specialty, they are used on the basis of these characteristics.

Maple Uses 

There are two types of maple wood: Soft maple and Hard maple. Soft Maple has 700 to 950 lbf (4,230 N) Janka hardness. And hard maple has 1,450 lbf (6,450 N) Janka Hardness.

Mainly Hard maple is used for flooring, cabinets, furniture, bowls, bowling alleys, bowling pins, etc. Good flooring requires the wood to be hard. So that scratches and dents are less likely.

Soft maple wood is used for basic work, furniture, kitchen cabinets, doors, musical instruments, turnings, paper (pulpwood), and millwork. Soft maple is less hard and tough than hard maple.

Walnut Uses

The walnut wood has a great natural brown color and straight grain. It is a shock-resistant and durable wood species. Hence walnut wood is a great option for making gun stocks and furniture.

It is an expensive species of wood, So that walnut is also used for veneer sheets, which are used for flooring and cabinet

Walnut wood is not considered suitable for outdoor use. Although it is durable, there is a possibility of insect attacks. Walnut wood can last only for about 2 to 4 weeks in the external environment. Ipe and other hardwoods are very good options for outdoor use.

Maple vs Walnut Wood Workability

Maple and Walnut are both hardwood species, the hardness of both is almost the same. Their workability is also almost the same. They are fairly easy to work with hand and machine tools

However, due to the irregular grain in some species of maple and walnut, it may be difficult to work. Like in planner and gluing or other works.

Some species of maple come in the hard maple category. The density and weight of this type of species are high so that it may be difficult in machine work. Maple has a tendency to burn and heat when being machined with high-speed cutters. Otherwise, it Turns, glues, and finishes well.

Maple vs Walnut Appearance

The color of the maple species is slightly lighter and the grain is generally straight, fine, even texture. Although some maple pieces may be wavy and knotty. 

The color of walnut wood is slightly darker. Its color varies from light brown to dark brown. It can be stained. But most people do not like to stain. Because walnut wood has a natural dark color. 

Maple vs Walnut Wood Pros and Cons

Pros and Cons
Pros and Cons

All wood species have some flaws and properties, it is important to be aware of their properties before using them.

Maple Wood Pros and Cons

Maple Pros   Maple Cons
Maple wood is versatile, it is used for many purposesMaple wood does not have weather resistance. There is a possibility of damage in moisture and sunlight.
maple is an affordable wood speciesThe wood is prone to cracking when used outdoors
Due to its light color, maple wood can be stained easily.Maple wood has minimum grain variation. Therefore it has no more options.
Maple has good workability and finishing properties.Maple tree growth is about 12-18 inches per year. It is less than other hardwoods
Due to its great hardness maple is resistant to scratches and lasts for long.Maple furniture needs regular maintenance.
The wood is available in the abundanceMaple is a light-color hardwood. Which gets Fades Over Time 

Walnut Wood Pros and Cons

Walnut ProsWalnut Cons
Great natural dark colorNot Suitable for outdoor purposes
More durable than other hardwoods, its lifespan is up to 150-400 yearsThe walnut wood is so expensive as compared to other hardwoods.
Walnut’s workability is quite easy as compared to other woodsWalnuts have a high weight. Therefore it can be difficult to work with wood at high altitudes.
Walnut wood is dimensionally stableWalnut wood is not moisture and weather-resistant, so it cannot be used for outdoor uses.
Easy maintenance, Can be easily cleaned with light oil or even with ordinary waterThe hardness of some species such as the American black walnut is very high, which can sometimes be difficult to work with.
Walnut wood is easy to stain according to your preferencesSome wood pieces have an irregular grain pattern which can be a problem during wood planer.

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