Rock Maple is a medium size hardwood restricted in distribution to eastern North America, very common in Canada. The tree generally grows to heights between 27–35 metres with diameters up to 1metre.
along with the other species of the Maple family are considered the most
valuable hardwood trees of North America, for not only are some prized
for their timber but they are also the natural source of maple syrup.
Rock Maple is slow to dry with medium shrinkage rates between 3 to 6% but suffers little degrade. It glues very well, is a good base for stains and polish, is well suited to wood turning and steam bending with an excellent resistance to abrasion.
Heartwood is pale brown to pale reddish brown with darker coloured latewood bands often causing a fiddleback figure on the backsawn face and a distinctive birdseye on the quartersawn. Sapwood comes in a very wide band usually lighter or creamy and sometimes almost white although more often difficult to distinguish and is susceptible to lyctid borer attack.
The texture is fine and even with the grain generally straight but sometimes can be wavy accentuating the figure. Rock Maple is highly regarded because of its abrasion resistance and higher than expected
impact values for flooring, particularly sports floors such as bowling alleys and squash courts.
Although large volumes are not imported into Australia it is regularly available for these applications and is also used for high grade furniture, decorative veneer, musical instruments, handles, woodturning and craft applications.