Perfect for carving, basswood is lightweight and works great with hand & power tools. Basswood is also a great and common option for musical instruments, shutters and millwork. Basswood is relatively soft in terms of hardwood with a 410 score on the Janka hardness scale. Basswood lumber is also used for cooperage, veneer, excelsior and pulp. Basswood does tend to glue and finish well, but also isn’t great for steam-bending and nail holding.