I guess it would be redundant to say that dbgard is misguided...(He didn't get enough attention from his parents when he was little - so be forewarned! Your kids will turn out like this if you keep them locked in a closet!
Yes, it does matter.
There's actually a more-science-than- you-want-article on this, Paul, in a recent "Aikido Today." The hardest, believe it or not, is osage wood, which is extremely common in the Midwest known as "osage orange" or "hedge" trees. Grows very straight and is used for fence posts by farmers. However, don't know where you could buy it.
What's unique about osage is that it's very hard, but also has a good "spring" resilience to it.
Ebony and related woods are actually
a bit down on the hardenss list.
I have a really nice jo that's still going strong after 8 years that I got from bujin - it's made of kurumi wood, and is a laminate which gives extra strength. It has a nice feel to it - strong, yet light, sort of has its own spirit!
Jun, tell me a little about that Yagyu bokken- sounds interesting.
[Edited by AikiTom on July 9, 2000 at 08:38pm]