Steamed Beech for Wasters?


White Belt
Mar 18, 2023
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Tucson, AZ
Hey folks, Im new here so forgive me for any mistakes. I also posted in Chinese swords, but thought this might be a good place to post as well.

I am coming to understand Hickory is the go to for wooden wasters, but I keep hearing about Beech, as well.

I have basic wood working skills (Thanks, dad!) and I want to try to make a practice sword. It seems most of the wooden practice swords in the west are made from hickory, but most of the eastern swords are made from steamed beech.

So, about steamed beech, and as I understand it, steaming the wood allows you to bend and shape it. But does steaming do anything to increase it's strength, or resilience? A number of martial arts swords and spears are made from Steamed Beech, but I can't find any information for why exactly.

Has anyone used or made a Beech waster?

Thanks so much !