Tropical Lumber

Tropical Lumber

WoodLand Tropical Lumber: Construction & Housing

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Cedar of Lebanon

  • Distribution: Mountainous areas of the Mediterranean region
  • Tree Size: 100-130 ft (30-40 m) tall, 5-7 ft (1.5-2.1 m) trunk diameter
  • Average Dried Weight: 32 lbs/ft3 (510 kg/m3)
  • Specific Gravity (Basic, 12% MC): .41, .51
  • Janka Hardness: 820 lbf (3,670 N)
  • Modulus of Rupture: 11,890 lbf/in2 (82.0 MPa)
  • Elastic Modulus: 1,465,000 lbf/in2 (10.10 GPa)
  • Crushing Strength: 6,090 lbf/in2 (42.0 MPa)
  • Shrinkage: Radial: 4.1%, Tangential: 6.0%, Volumetric: 10.1%, T/R Ratio: 1.5
  • Color/Appearance: Heartwood is a cream to light reddish brown color. Narrow sapwood is a pale yellowish white.
  • Grain/Texture: Grain is generally straight, though knots or bark inclusions may cause grain irregularities. Medium to coarse texture with a moderate natural luster
  • Rot Resistance: Rated as very durable, and generally resistant to insect attack.
  • Workability: Easy to work with hand and machine tools, though knots and bark inclusions can cause difficulties in machining. Turns, glues, and finishes well.
  • Odor: Has a long-lasting, sweet scent that’s sometimes used in making perfume.
  • Safety: Although severe reactions are quite uncommon, Cedar of Lebanon has been reported to cause skin and respiratory irritation, as well as asthma effects.
  • Sustainability: This wood species is not listed in the CITES Appendices, and is reported by the IUCN as being a species of least concern.
  • Common Uses: Veneer, cabinetry, building construction, and turned objects.

Teak

  • Common Name(s): Teak, Burmese Teak
  • Distribution: Native to southern Asia, Teak is also widely grown on plantations throughout tropical regions of Africa, Asia, and Latin America.
  • Tree Size: 100-130 ft (30-40 m) tall, 3-5 ft (1-1.5 m) trunk diameter
  • Average Dried Weight: 41 lbs/ft3 (650 kg/m3)
  • Specific Gravity (Basic, 12% MC): .54, .65
  • Janka Hardness: 1,070 lbf (4,740 N)
  • Modulus of Rupture: 13,940 lbf/in2 (96.1 MPa)
  • Elastic Modulus: 1,570,000 lbf/in2 (10.83 GPa)
  • Crushing Strength: 7,770 lbf/in2 (53.6 MPa)
  • Shrinkage: Radial: 2.5%, Tangential: 5.8%, Volumetric: 7.0%, T/R Ratio: 2.3
  • Color/Appearance: Heartwood tends to be a golden or medium brown, with color darkening with age.
  • Grain/Texture: Teak has a coarse texture with medium-sized open pores. The grain tends to be straight, though it can occasionally be wavy or interlocked.
  • Grain/Texture: Teak also has a slightly oily or greasy feel due to its natural oils.
  • Rot Resistance: Teak has been considered by many to be the gold standard for decay resistance, and its heartwood is rated as very durable.
  • Rot Resistance: Teak is also resistant to termites, though it is only moderately resistant to marine borers and powder post beetles.
  • Workability: Easy to work in nearly all regards, with the only caveat being that Teak contains a high level of silica (up to 1.4%) which has a pronounced blunting effect on cutting edges.
  • Despite its natural oils, Teak usually glues and finishes well, though in some instances it may be necessary to wipe the surface of the wood with a solvent prior to gluing/finishing to reduce the natu
  • Odor: Teak can have a leather-like scent when freshly milled.
  • Allergies/Toxicity: Although severe reactions are quite uncommon, Teak has been reported as a sensitizer. Usually most common reactions simply include eye, skin, or respiratory irritation.
  • Sustainability: This wood species is not listed in the CITES Appendices or on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
  • Common Uses: Ship and boat-building, veneer, furniture, exterior construction, carving, turnings, and other small wood objects.

Macassar Ebony

  • Common Name(s): Macassar Ebony, Striped Ebony
  • Distribution: Southeast Asia
  • Tree Size: 50-65 ft (15-20m) tall, 1.5 ft (.4 m) trunk diameter
  • Average Dried Weight: 72 lbs/ft3 (1,150 kg/m3)
  • Specific Gravity (Basic, 12% MC): .89, 1.15
  • Janka Hardness: 3,220 lbf (14,140 N)
  • Modulus of Rupture:No data available
  • Elastic Modulus: No data available
  • Crushing Strength: No data available
  • Color/Appearance: Has a dramatic striped appearance, somewhat similar to Zebrawood. Light to reddish brown body with darker brown or black stripes
  • Grain/Texture: Has a very fine texture and small pores. The grain is usually straight, but can sometimes be interlocked.
  • Rot Resistance: Heartwood is rated as very durable in resistance to fungi decay, though it is reported to be susceptible to insect attack.
  • Workability: Tends to be rather difficult to work, due to its high density, blunting effect on cutters, and its occasionally interlocked grain.
  • Workability: The wood is also prone to checking and splitting during drying, and drying defects are not uncommon. The wood is excellent for turnery
  • Odor: Macassar Ebony has a mild, slightly unpleasant odor when being worked.
  • Allergies/Toxicity: Severe reactions are quite uncommon, Ebony in the Diospyros genus has been reported as a sensitizer & Macassar Ebony has been specifically reported to cause skin irritation.
  • Sustainability: This wood species is not listed in the CITES Appendices, but is on the IUCN Red List.
  • Sustainability . It is listed as vulnerable due to a population reduction of over 20% in the past three generations, caused by a decline in its natural range, and exploitation.
  • Common Uses: Veneer, high-end cabinetry, billiard cues, musical instruments, and other small specialty items.

Ipe

  • Common Name(s): Ipe, Brazilian Walnut, Lapacho
  • Distribution: Tropical Americas (Central and South America); also farmed commercially
  • Tree Size: 100 ft (30 m) tall, 2-3 ft (.6-1.0 m) trunk diameter
  • Average Dried Weight: 69 lbs/ft3 (1,100 kg/m3)
  • Specific Gravity (Basic, 12% MC): .91, 1.10
  • Janka Hardness: 3,510 lbf (15,620 N)
  • Modulus of Rupture: 25,660 lbf/in2 (177.0 MPa)
  • Elastic Modulus: 3,200,000 lbf/in2 (22.07 GPa)
  • Crushing Strength: 13,600 lbf/in2 (93.8 MPa)
  • Shrinkage: Radial: 5.9%, Tangential: 7.2%, Volumetric: 12.4%, T/R Ratio: 1.2
  • Color/Appearance: Heartwood can vary in color from a reddish brown, to a more yellowish olive brown, to a dark blackish brown; sometimes with contrasting darker brown/black stripes.
  • Color/Appearance: In certain species, there are powdery yellow deposits within the wood. Ipe can be difficult to distinguish visually from Cumaru, another dense South American timber.
  • Color/Appearance: Ipe tends to be darker, and lacks the subtle yet characteristic vanilla/cinnamon scent while being worked.
  • Grain/Texture: Has a fine to medium texture, with the grain varying from straight to irregular and/or interlocked.
  • Rot Resistance: Ipe is among the most durable lumbers on earth, with exceptional resistance to decay, rot, and insect attack.
  • Rot Resistance: Ipe was reportedly used for the boardwalk along the beach of New York City’s Coney Island,
  • Rot Resistance: Ipe lasted for 25 years before it needed to be replaced: an amazing lifespan given the amount of traffic and environmental stresses put upon the wood.
  • Workability: Overall, Ipe is a difficult wood to work, being extremely hard and dense, with high cutting resistance during sawing. Ipe also has a pronounced blunting effect on cutting edges.
  • Workability: The wood generally planes smoothly, but the grain can tearout on interlocked areas. Also, Ipe can be difficult to glue properly, and surface preparation prior to gluing is recommended.
  • Odor: Ipe has a mild scent while being worked.
  • Allergies/Toxicity: Although severe reactions are quite uncommon, Ipe has been reported to cause skin, eye, and respiratory irritation, & other effects such as headaches and/or disturbance of vision.
  • Sustainability: This wood species is not listed in the CITES Appendices or on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
  • Common Uses: Flooring, decking, exterior lumber, veneer, tool handles, and other turned objects.

Sucupira

  • Origin: Northern South America (Brazil, Venezuela, Guyana)
  • Color: The heartwood is yellow-brown to chocolate brown, depending on the type of wood, streaked with lighter, more yellowish veins.
  • Characteristics: Irregular fiber structure, often alternating spiral growth
  • Application: Veneer, furniture, turning work

Santos Rosewood

  • Origin: South America (Brazil, Bolivia)
  • Color: The lighter red and more striking the color, the higher is the value of the wood.
  • Characteristics: Very decorative light brown to black-brown veins; the fiber structure is partly parallel, partly very intricate.
  • Application: For the highest demands: highly decorative furniture wood for interior finishing and high-quality furniture making
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