About Wood

Acacia (Babul)

 Acacia nilotica is truly a multipurpose tree. Its timber is valued by rural folks, its leaves and pod are used as fodder and as tanning material and its gum has several uses, including as a substitute for gum arabic. It tolerates extremes of temperature and moisture and can survive both drought and flooded conditions. It is commonly grown in homestead plantation because virtually every part of the tree can be used by the farmer. The sap wood of babul is sharply demarcated from the heart wood and is white or whitish, turning pale yellow on exposure. The heart wood is pinkish brown and turns reddish brown on exposure, often with dark streaks. The grain is fine and straight or slightly twisted.

Babul is a moderate-sized tree with a spreading crown, and height which can reach from 15 m to 25 m and a girth of 2.4 to 3.0 m. It is almost an evergreen tree with a short, thick and cylindrical trunk. The tree has a very clear bole up to a height of 5 to 6.5 m. In difficult sites, the tree seldom grows more than 10 m. The clean bole in such cases is not more than 3-4 m. There are several varieties of babul; the telia and kauria varieties are the best-known. The wood of the telia variety is considered to be of the highest quality.

The wood is very heavy, strong, very tough and extremely hard. It is much stronger than teak and has good shock-absorbing qualities. The average weight is about 785 kg/m3 at 12 percent moisture content. It is somewhat coarse-textured and has inter-locked grains. The wood is dull and somewhat rough without any characteristic odor or taste

  • Physical and Mechanical Properties
  • Density, Air-dry 768kg/m3
  • Shrinkage, green to oven-dry Radial Tangential2.76.7
  • Modulus of rupture (MOR) 76 MPa
  • Modulus of elasticity (MOE) 96 MPa
  • Compression parallel to grain 35 MPa


Babul seasons well both by air-drying and by kiln seasoning. It can be air-dried in one year.


It is an easy wood to convert and resaw when green, but it becomes harder and tougher when seasoned. It works well by hand machines and finishes to a good surface. Its working quality of worked surface and ease of working, is 84compared to 100 for teak.


The heartwood is fairly durable, though less so than teak. The sapwood is not very durable as it is susceptible to insect attack.


Physical and Mechanical Properties

The mango originated in India and is one of the most popular fruits all over the world. Less well known is the timber obtained from the mango tree, which is becoming more popular in recent years. Mango wood has a unique, wavy-grained appearance with a lot of colour variation. Mango has become naturalised and adapted throughout the tropics and subtropics.

Mango is moderately hard and dense, slightly harder ash or black cherry, and it is highly water resistant. The wood is lustrous and blond, often with a pink tinge There is no distinct sapwood,although old trees sometimes contain a small central dark core. It has a moderately coarse texture with an irregular, strongly interlocked grain. The pores are large and prominent. Marbled staining is preventable and occurs during processing; however, it is often desired

  • Average Weight (12% MC) 545-610 kg/m3
  • Average Volumetric Shrinkage(Green to 6% MC) 1.0-2.0%
  • Modulus of Rupture (MOR) 57-90MPa
  • Modulus of Elasticity (MOE) 7,500-14,500 Mpa
  • Compressive strength (parallel to grain) 32-48 Mpa
  • Hardness 4,500 N


Mango wood breaks down quickly when left untreated and exposed to the elements. It is also highly susceptible to insect attack. However, when properly seasoned and treated, mango wood can last for many years.


In recent years, mango wood has gained popularity for furniture manfacturing which can be attributed to its moderate grain texture and staining quality.

It is being used extensively for home furniture in various finishes and textures.

 Sheesham (Rosewood)

 Indian Rosewood, also known as Sheesham, Bombay blackwood, Bombay rosewood, palisander, is well-known the world over as a beautiful timber as well as an excellent turnery wood.

It grows in the dry deciduous forests throughout the India peninsula, but attains its best growth in the Western Ghats region of South India. After teak, it is the most important cultivated timber tree in India, planted on roadsides and as a shade tree for tea plantation

Sheesham is a beautiful, usually single-stem, deciduous tree with a dome-shaped crown of lush green foliage. On wet sites it may remain evergreen. The tree reaches a height of 20-40 meters with a girth of 1.5- 2.0 meters. Leaves are alternate with 5-7 unequal-sized leaflets origination from the same stem. Leaflets are leathery, dark green up to 15 cm long. Flowers are white, 0.5-1.0 cm long. The brown pods are oblong and pointed at both ends, containing 1-4 smooth brown seeds. The bark is grey, thin with irregular short cracks and exfoliates in long flakes. The root system is well developed, consisting of deep tap roots and long lateral roots

Sheesham is very dense, hard and strong. It has high bending and crushing strength, low stiffness, and medium shock resistance. The heartwood varies in colour from golden brown to dark purple brown with dark purple or purple-black streaks, giving an attractive figure; the sapwood is yellowish, sometimes with a purplish tinge, sharply demarcated. The grain is narrowly interlocked producing a ribbon-like figure; the texture is uniform and moderately coarse.

  • Rosewood has low luster and is fragrant, especially when freshly cut.
  • Density, Air- dry 750-850 kg/m3
  • Shrinkage, Green to Oven-dry Radial Tangential 2.7%5.8%
  • Modulus of rupture (MOR) 116 MPa
  • Modulus of elasticity (MOE) 12 GPa
  • Compression parallel to grain 56-65 MPa
  • Janka Side Hardness 3200


The timber, air dries fairly rapidly but must be protected against too rapid drying to avoid surface chaffing and end splitting. It kiln dries well but slowly, and the colour improves during this process. There is small movement in service and it has excellent dimension stability.

Working Properties

There is severe blunting of cutting edges, and is fairly hard to saw or machine due to calcareous deposits present in some of the vessels(the heart is usually boxed out in conversion). Nailing is difficult. Glues satisfactorily and requires grain filling for an excellent polished or waxed finish.


Rosewood is very durable and moderately resistant to termites. The sapwood is liable to attack bypower post beetles. An oily substance present in the wood not only makes it susceptible of a high degree of finish, but also tends to waterproof it and make it resistant to the influence of moisture, even when left in contact with water indefinitely.


Indian Rosewood is among the finest cabinet, furniture and veneer timbers. It is widely used in making fine furniture, carvings, knives handles and many musical instruments, such as guitar and violins, due to its acoustic qualities.

  Suar Wood

Suar Wood comes from a tree called the “Rain Tree“. The scientific name for this tree is Albizia Saman. Although this sounds like a random name, the tree in itself has a perfectly shaped design. Growing up to 80 feet tall an overarching dome has a majestic form and also provides a protective layer around the entire area it covers.

The wood that comes from this tree is unique. Making it one of the most versatile wood types for making furniture, such as tables, console tables, stands, mirror frames, benches and chests

Suar Wood is strong and very durable, with a light yellow sapwood and rich dark chocolate-brown heartwood. The rich colour and beautiful grain of the heartwood, resembles black walnut making wood from larger trees highly prized for the table top. The wood is often cross-grained making it highly sought after for its toughness. It is also highly resistant to decay and termites. Suar Wood only requires basic maintenance such as soap & water to maintain its grandeur.

Suar Wood has a very unique nature. The criss-cross nature of the grains brings interesting designs and patterns in the wood. If you cut out a piece of Suar wood ten different times, you will get ten different patterns.

Another aspect to the natural patterns is the colour of the patterns, with dark brown finishes, as well as a light brown finishes. This looks great on long tables in restaurants or offices because of the unique patterns that give a different feel to each table produced.

Origin of Suar Wood

Suar Wood or some refer to it as South American Walnut and often regarded as the source for quality wood slab tables. This type of Rain Tree originates from South and Central America, it has been widely introduced to Southeast Asia and planted throughout the tropics. Owing to its popularity all across the world, Suar Wood is called by different names in different parts of the world. In the West, it is often referred to as Monkeypod, Samanea Saman, Parota and South American Walnut. In Thailand, they called it Acacia. In Indonesia, people referred them as Suar Wood. In Chinese, is called  “雨树” direct translation of the Rain Tree. Under Nature reserve conversation, the Rain Tree species receive the status of G5 globally. This indicates its abundance, widespread and is in no danger of extinction. CraftwoodNI supports legal timber trade & legally produced timber.

Teak Wood

One of the most popular among all the premium wood, Teak (Tectona Grandis) is a tropical hardwood tree species placed in the flowering plant family Lamiaceae. Some forms of teak are known as Burmese teak, Central Province teak (CP teak), as well as Nagpur teak. T. Grandis is a large, deciduous tree that occurs in mixed hardwood forests and grow up to 40 meters tall. It has small, fragrant white flowers arranged in dense clusters (panicles) at the end of the branches. These flowers contain both types of reproductive organs (perfect flowers). The large, papery leaves of teak trees are often hairy on the lower surface.

Teak wood has a leather-like smell when it is freshly milled and is particularly valued for its durability and water resistance. The wood is often used for boat building, exterior construction, veneer, furniture, carving, turnings, and other small wood projects. Tectona Grandis is native to south and southeast Asia, mainly Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Thailand and Sri Lanka, but is naturalised and cultivated in many countries in Africa and the Caribbean. Myanmar’s teak forests account for nearly half of the world’s naturally occurring teak.

Teak wood is known globally for its rich golden colour and its resistance to rotting. Teak wood furniture comes with an exquisite look and feel that is known to stand for generations. The popularity of this variety of wood is the material for cupboards, tables or even doors and windows is nothing new. Teak wood is also known for its use in shipbuilding, decking, and flooring.

This tropical hardwood is known for its rich wood fibre and unique golden tingle. One of the major reasons behind the immense popularity of teak wood is because of its ability to endure all weather conditions without the need of any oil or varnish. Teak wood furniture will retain it’s look even if it is left in the outdoors for years. This is one of the few varieties of wood, which is known to beautify with age.

Tamarind Wood

The tamarind is a long-lived, medium-growth tree, which attains a maximum crown height of 12 to 18 metres (39 to 59 ft). The crown has an irregular, vase-shaped outline of dense foliage. The tree grows well in full sun. It prefers clay, loam, sandy, and acidic soil types, with a high resistance to drought and aerosol salt (wind-borne salt as found in coastal areas).

Tamarind lumber is used to make furniture, carvings, turned objects such as mortars and pestles, chopping blocks, and other small specialty wood items.

Tamarind heartwood is reddish brown, sometimes with a purplish hue. The heartwood in tamarind tends to be narrow and is usually only present in older and larger trees. The pale yellow sapwood is sharply defined from the heartwood. Heartwood very durable in decay resistance, and is also resistant to insects. Due to its density and interlocked grain, tamarind is considered difficult to work. Heartwood has a pronounced blunting effect on cutting edges. Tamarind turns, glues, and finishes well. The heartwood is able to take a high natural polish.

Tamarind is an excellent wood for creating designer furniture. The unique grains, colouring and durability of the wood makes it perfect for the home or office. The heartwood is very hard, strong and highly durable and has a unique dark brown to purple colouring. As dining tables slabs, Tamarind wood is well suited as it provides a tough, durable construction that will last for many years. The unique nature of Tamarind really shows in the grain patterns and colouring, making it the perfect wood for those interested in having great designer furniture for the home. Solid, durable, highly resistant to impact and insects, Tamarind makes the perfect wood for dining tables. For those who are interested in creating a powerful statement in their home furnishings, having solid wood furniture made from Tamarind is an excellent start.

Sono Wood

Sonokeling (Dalbergia latifolia) is an Indonesian native hard and heavy rosewood with a deep purple brown, reddish brown or sometimes greenish brown. Indonesian Sonokeling is the same tree as East Indian rosewood but differs slightly due to the plantation origins and to some extent climate differences, which can cause a broader colour range, although its base colour is almost always brown, the shades can range from golden brown, to purplish or dark reddish brown. Secondary colours are often present. The Rosewood’s colours will darken with continued UV exposure from the sun. East Indian Rosewood is generally less dense than most other rosewoods. Its grains are typically interlocked (although they can be irregular or straight), which can make it difficult to work. Care must be taken when finishing the wood, as it is not uncommon for the wood’s natural resins to impose if it is not first sealed. It has a medium texture and has a little less hardness in density.

Indonesian Sonokeling rosewood is a valuable material, used for high-end flooring, furniture, decorative veneers, souvenirs, and handcrafted products. Since the exportation ban on Brazilian Rosewood, more than twenty years ago, it has become a popular substitute with corporate guitar manufacturers (electric and acoustic, alike) due in large part to its historically steady supply and relatively low cost by comparison to Brazilian Rosewood, its pores are smaller, but it is also a very durable wood, that’s not overly susceptible to insect damage or infestation and is considered stable after drying.

Lychee Wood

Lychee Wood or Litchi Chinensis can be described as an evergreen tree and a hardwood, which as its name sounds is derived from the lychee tree. It is the only member of the Litchi genus, which is in the soapberry family. Typically growing to 49ft or 15m tall. There are instances where it can get as high as 92 ft or 28 m in the right climate conditions. With Lychee trees not growing that big and the size of the trunk closely resembling the diameter of a saucer because the rings for every year are extremely tight, it gives the tree a slight design flaw. Meaning that, locating a tree with a sufficient sized trunk to create a Solid wood countertop would mean finding a tree that is a minimum of 50 years old. This makes it extremely difficult and rare to locate a tree of the correct size that is suitable for making a sole wooden slab table.

Lychee wood has a bark that looks grey to black, with the branches resembling a reddish brown. Its leaves are always green and they measure at 12.5-20cm or 4.9-7.9 inches long with leaflets, which are usually in 2 to 4 pairs. The Lychee tree has foliage similar to Lauraceae, probably due to close evolution. Its leaves have evolved to repel water, causing them to be known as lauroid or laurophyll leaves. The properties and qualities of this particular wood ensure that it is an extremely versatile source of wood for making tables.

Lychees are actually extensively cultivated in nations such as China, Vietnam, Thailand, India and other tropical countries in the Southeast of Asia. It has also shown great resilience to be grown outside this corridor in Brazil, South Africa, Australia, the Caribbean, the south-eastern part of the United States and Israel. The Lychee tree requires a climate that has summertime heat, humidity and rainfall. The best way to grow this is usually on slightly acidic soil that is properly drained. These trees can also be typically grown for either their fruit or to serve as an ornamental tree.