Source for bamboo and hardwood samples

Made another visit to Lowe’s last night (I seem to find myself there a couple times a week LOL)

I was looking around the flooring section to check out ceramic tiles for engraving but ran across an end display for their Cali Bamboo product line with a nice variety of materials available. Best part is, they have color chips on sale for 25 CENTS each.

Looking at these color chips in hand (3"x3" or so, just under 1/2" thick) it seems like these are actually solid bamboo through and through.,4294611811

The end cap display on the next isle over also had hardwood flooring color chips. These were 6"x6" pieces, roughly 1/2" thick. Looking at the edge, seemed it was laminated but the top layer was about 2mm thick hardwood. Those color chips were 50 cents each.

Anyone looking for small quantities of materials to try out and practice with, looks like a good option there!


I put 5/8" bamboo in the bar and 3/8" in the kitchen.They are solid bamboo, but laminated to build thickness due to the wall thickness of the material. Each layer is strips about 3/4" wide laminated together. Threw away a buttload of scraps just before Glowforge came to be.
In the strips that comprise the surface there is enough natural color variation that the difference is pronounced when engraved, giving a stripe.
I plan to explore inlay with that material.


That’s why I like Home Depot - all their samples are free… Picked up cork flooring, bamboo and others that are too hard to cut but engrave great!


When I first got my Chinese laser I did the same. Took a ton of flooring samples. They mostly just charred the outside and that was it. Not really useful at all. The coatings on those can be pretty nasty too.

They do sell some random hardwoods there fairly cheap sometimes in the form of grilling planks. Usually 3 or 4 different types of hardwoods. Maple, cherry, poplar, alder if you’re lucky