Timber Options

John Watson offers a wide variety of different timber door options, giving you the flexibility to choose your preferred wood veneer and giving you complete control over your design scheme.

Below you will find some of the wood finishes currently available on our timber doors.

Timber is a natural product. The timbers illustrated here are representative only of how the individual timber might appear when finished with a clear lacquer. We are unable to accept liability for the natural variations in timber.



American Ash is a light coloured hardwood and is only suitable for internal use. American ash is similar in appearance to European ash. The sapwood is light coloured to nearly white and the heartwood varies from greyish brown to light brown, to pale yellow streaked with brown. The wood is generally straight grained with a coarse uniform texture.

White OakWhite Oak

American White Oak is a light coloured hardwood from North America. It is classed as durable, but can swell if used externally. It has its own distinctive tight grain and varies in colour from a straw shade to a pale red. White Oak has a straight grain, with the characteristic silver grain on quartered material. Medium to coarse textured.


Soft Maple is creamy white in appearance and is straight grained. Soft Maple is used for interior joinery and furniture.

Hard maple is strong, heavy, hard, straight-grained and fine textured. The heartwood is light reddish-brown with deeper-coloured late-wood bands. The sapwood is white in colour, and furnishes the white maple prized for certain uses. It differs mainly from the soft maples in its greater density and firmer texture. It is not a durable timber and is better suited to internal applications.


Walnut is a dark, heavy and strong hardwood. Due to its strength it is difficult to work or split. Walnut finishes to a high polish. The timber is known for knots. This tree grows up to 40-50m and have trunks up to a diameter of 60″. The tree most commonly grows in Mid and Eastern USA and Canada. This tree has a coloured sap that naturally stains the timber giving a contrasting colour across a veneer.


Cherry is a premium American hardwood prized for its natural lustre, attractive grain, and rich, warm glow. This wood has a consistently high quality of grain, colour, and width. If placed in direct sunlight, over 12 months the colour will darken to a rich, red-brown. Cherry's heartwood varies from rich red to reddish-brown, with a fine, straight, close grain with narrow brown pith flecks, small gum pockets with a smooth texture. The timber has good wood bending properties, low stiffness, medium strength and resistance.

TulipwoodTulipwood or Yellow Poplar

This sapwood is very wide, whitish in colour and streaked. It is sharply defined from the heartwood which varies from pale yellowish-brown to pale olive brown streaked with olive green, dark grey or pinkish-brown, and when mineral stained, streaks of steel blue. Appearance: Uniform, straight grained; regular with fine texture.

Red OakRed Oak

The sapwood of red oak is white to light brown and the heartwood is a pinkish reddish brown. The wood is similar in general appearance to white oak, but with a slightly less pronounced figure due to the smaller rays. The wood is mostly straight grained, with a coarse texture. The red oak tree gets its name because of the colour of the leaves in the autumn. The wood is hard and heavy, with medium bending strength and stiffness and high crushing strength.



European BeechEuropean Beech

Beech is a smooth wood which allows for even staining. It is attractive in appearance with warm grain patterns. It shows versatility, and is capable of creating a variety of different looks. Beech comes from sustainable managed forests. Beech wood is normally white, pale cream or pale brown and is steamed to relieve drying stresses while also bringing out a pinkish-red colour.

Colour no defect beech (CND)Colour no defect beech (CND)

CND is also known as paint grade. Some customers use CND Beech timber for use where the strength is required but the wood may not be visible or may be painted over. Some others like it for the colour variation.

European OakEuropean Oak

The overall grade is defect free and similar to American White Oak except that it has the distinct advantage of being practically sap free. European Oak is a durable timber and very resistant. The texture is medium to coarse. The colour is yellowish-brown.

Sweet ChestnutChestnut

Sweet Chestnut's sapwood is narrow and distinct from the heartwood which is yellowish-brown in colour, closely resembling oak in appearance but lacking the silver-grain figure characteristic of that timber, resulting from the finer rays and it is less hard and tough. The grain may be straight, but is more commonly spiral. Sweet chestnut has medium density and low bending strength.




African cedar is nearly 50-70% whitish-yellow sapwood, which clearly contrasts with the yellow-red to reddish-brown core wood. This hard timber possesses good pressure and bending strengths, making it easy to work with. African Cedar being durable and weather resistant has a wide variety of applications.


Koto is used as core stock for plywood manufacture and as a backing veneer for plywood panels. Selected logs are sliced for decorative veneer. Koto's heartwood is creamy-white in colour with a greyish tint. The grain is interlocked with small knot clusters present in some logs. The texture is moderately coarse. Quartered surfaces reveal a striking flecked figure due to the high rays.


African Sapele is extensively used as a constructional veneer for plywood, and selected logs are sliced for panelling and decorative face veneers. The heartwood has a medium to dark reddish-brown colour, characterised by a well-defined ribbon striped figure on quartered surfaces. Sometimes, when wavy grain is present, a very attractive fiddleback figure, roe figure or occasionally, beautiful mottled figure is obtained. The grain is interlocked or wavy and the texture fairly fine. Sapele has a cedar-like scent when freshly cut. Moderately durable.



Our wide range of clear softwoods comes with detailed specifications to ensure you choose the most appropriate for your project. And in addition to the species listed here, we can source numerous others on request.

North American & Canada

Clear Douglas FirClear Douglas Fir

Douglas Fir is a clear softwood grown in North America. The colour is pale pinkish-brown and is used both internally and externally. There is limited availability of certified Douglas Fir through the Sustainable Forests Initiative (SFI) and the Canadian Standards Association. (CSA).

Western Red CedarWestern Red Cedar

Western Red Cedar is a North American softwood which is very durable used both internally and externally. It is used from cladding the outside of buildings. This product is readily available certified by the Canadian Standards Association. (CSA). Excellent durability and stability.




European Redwood is the name usually applied to soft wood imported into the UK from European sources including Russia. The timber is normally straight grained with a reasonable fine and even texture. The timber has a reddish colour when freshly cut but over time weathers down to a silvery colour. This timber has a preservative treatment in order to extend longevity. The colour darkens with age, giving yellow/red impression.


European Whitewood Is lighter in colour than Redwood and stays lighter when exposed to sunlight. Knots are round and of similar colour to the surrounding wood, sometimes dull greyish/brown. Rated as non-durable. European Whitewood grows throughout Scandinavia across Russia.

Pineheart Engineered

Engineering timber at the source can help reduce the likelihood of any imperfections that occur regularly in natural timber, i.e. knots and splits. This process also helps reduce the wastage on the timber and therefore manufacturing efficiency.


John Watson, Usworth Road Industrial Estate, Belle Vue Way, Hartlepool TS25 1JZ