Wood Hardness and strength

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Kyle

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Kyle Edwards
Tool grade hickory is pretty hard as is pecan. Both splinter horribly. I just ran 400 square feet of Pecan flooring for a guy that i sawed and kiln dried. I should have used CARBIDE KNIVES :) Hickory/Pecan has Janka rating of 1820. Janka rating is the force required to embed a .444 steel bearing/ball half its diameter into the wood.

I would have to believe that Pecan can be substituted for Hickory in almost every application and both are intermixed when running commercial flooring.


Janka Scale of Hardness


4500 Lignum Vitae
3800 Snakewood
3680 Brazilian Walnut (Ipe)
3540 Brazilian Teak (Cumaru)
3220 Ebony
3190 Bolivian Cherry (Cerezo)
3000 Brazilian Rosewood (Tamarindo)
2820 Brazilian Cherry (Jatoba)
2473 Spotted Gum
2350 Brazilian Cherry
2345 Mesquite
2300 Caribbean Rosewood
2200 Mahogany
2200 Santos Mahogany
2170 Asian Rosewood
2135 Brushbox
2046 Australian Beech
2023 Karri
2023 Sydney Blue
1925 Merbau
1910 Jarrah
1860 Purpleheart
1820 Pecan
1820 Hickory
1820 Pecan
1725 African Pedauk
1710 Kempas
1686 Rose River Gum
1630 Wenge
1500 Brazilian Maple
1450 Hard maple
1450 North American Maple
1400 Caribbean Walnut
1375 Australian Cypress
1360 White Oak
1350 Tasmanian Oak
1320 White Ash
1300 American Beech
1290 Angelique Teak
1290 Red Oak (Northern)
1260 Yellow Birch
1260 Red Oak
1225 Heart Pine
1155 True Teak
1102 Heritage Oak
1102 Alpine Ash
1010 North American Walnut
1010 Black Walnut
1000 Teak
950 North American Cherry
950 Black Cherry
870 So. Yellow Pine (longleaf)
800 Honduran Mahogany
690 So. Yellow Pine (loblolly & short leaf)
660 Douglas Fir
420 White Pine
410 Basswood
350 Western Red Cedar
100 Balsa

This guy is pretty nice, but he developed his own "test" for determining hardness in wood and told me that Persimmon and Black Locust were not as Hard as Hickory. He is correct on the Hickory but only nominally so as the Janka on Locust is 1730 but incorrect for the dry hardness of kiln dried Persimmon which is similiar to Mesquite and Brazilian Cherry at around 2300 Janka for hardness and is superior in the sheer test. I am fond of Persimmon to the point of being obsessive. The OLD OLD persimmon trees will have a heartwood that resembles the Gabon ebony being a jet black and will possess a much higher rating in all categories.

http://www.kingfisherwoodworks.com/


here is a table on the sheer strength of wood species we have available.


|-------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| TABLE VIII |
|-------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| SHEARING STRENGTH ACROSS THE GRAIN OF VARIOUS AMERICAN WOODS |
| (J.C. Trautwine. Jour. Franklin Institute. Vol. 109, 1880, pp. 105-106)
|--------------------------------------------------------------------------
|KIND OF WOOD | Lbs. per | KIND OF WOOD | Lbs. per |
| | sq. inch | | sq. inch |
|-----------------------+----------+-----------------------------+--------
| Ash | 6,280 | Hickory | 7,285 |
| Beech | 5,223 | Locust | 7,176 |
| Birch 5,595 | Maple | 6,355 |
| Cedar (white) | 1,372 | Oak | 4,425 |
| Cedar (white) | 1,519 | Oak (live) | 8,480 |
| Cedar (Central Amer.) | 3,410 | Pine (white) | 2,480 |
| Cherry | 2,945 | Pine (northern yellow) | 4,340 |
| Chestnut | 1,536 | Pine (southernyellow) | 5,735 |
| Dogwood | 6,510 | Pine (very resinous yellow) | 5,053 |
| Ebony | 7,750 | Poplar | 4,418 |
| Gum | 5,890 | Spruce | 3,255 |
| Hemlock | 2,750 | Walnut (black) | 4,728 |
| Hickory | 6,045 | Walnut (common) | 2,830 |
|---------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| NOTE.--Two specimens of each were tested. All were fairly seasoned and |
| without defects. The piece sheared off was 5/8 in. The single circular |
| area of each pin was 0.322 sq. in. |
|---------------------------------------------------------------------------|


You see that Live Oak, Ebony (persimmon) and Pecan are the best candidates as well as Locust. I would also recommend mesquite if it is straight and clean.

The live oak will indent more easily than Pecan, Hickory or Locust and Mesquite due to hardness being less than its counterparts. Live oak is pretty plentiful near the coast and would be considered a trash wood (not to me)
 
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sapwood

New User
Roger
Re: Purpleheart

Kyle,

I genuinely appreciate all the detailed information you provide and your obvious love of wood. Regretfully, many folks that sell wood aren't concerned about sustainability, reforestation, or environmental factors. Too often suppliers claim wood is "farmed" without knowing or caring how it was acquired:crybaby2:

So thanks :eusa_clap :eusa_clap :eusa_clap

Sapwood (tree hugger)
 

Kyle

New User
Kyle Edwards
Re: Purpleheart

Thanks for the compliment. I am glad to be of service. My friends kid me about being a "Cliff Clavin" from Cheers when it comes to wood.
 

gator

George
Corporate Member
Re: Purpleheart

The Janka Table and the Shear Strength table should find a permenant home somewhere, the 'downloads' section maybe?

George
 

DaveO

DaveO
Corporate Member
Re: Purpleheart

I agree, now how to make that happen :eusa_thin Maybe Kyle can give a hint as to how he got that great info :)
Dave:)
 

Kyle

New User
Kyle Edwards
I will post the sources and perhaps make an Adobe version for people to download as a file.

The shear strength is pretty old..

SHEARING STRENGTH ACROSS THE GRAIN OF VARIOUS AMERICAN WOODS |
| (J.C. Trautwine. Jour. Franklin Institute. Vol. 109, 1880, pp. 105-106)

notice the 1880 date :)

if you guys want a really cool site for identifying wood go no further than my alma mater NC State..

http://www.lib.ncsu.edu/specialcollections/forestry/hough/index.html
 

mshel

New User
Michael Shelley
Kyle,

I was totally shocked to see that Mahogany had a higher rating than oak or maple. I would have thought it would have been much lower on the scale. I know from my experience, it seems to dent rather easily, hence my awe. Learn sumpin new ery day.:rolf:

Mike
 

D L Ames

New User
D L Ames
mshel said:
Kyle,

I was totally shocked to see that Mahogany had a higher rating than oak or maple. I would have thought it would have been much lower on the scale. I know from my experience, it seems to dent rather easily, hence my awe. Learn sumpin new ery day.:rolf:

Mike
Mike, which mahogany were you looking at? Santos mahogany was higher than oak or maple but Honduran mahogany was much lower.

D L
 
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