Genuine Mahogany (Swietenia macrophylla)

Very easy to work with hand and machine tools. Easy to finish, and takes an excellent polish. Slices and rotary cuts into fine veneer. Genuine Mahogany is known as the “leading craftsmen wood.”

Family: Meliaceae

Other Common Names: Honduras Mahogany, Caoba, and Acajou.

Uses: Fine furniture and cabinetmaking, interior trim paneling, fancy veneers, musical instruments, boat building, patternmaking, turnery, and carving.

Thicknesses: Available in 4/4, 5/4, 6/4, 8/4, 10/4, 12/4, and 16/4 Air-Dried and Kiln Dried.

Grades: Pattern, F1F & Better, Quarter Sawn, #1 Common & Better, #2 Common & Better, Select & Better, FAS, FAS & Better

Distribution: Southern Mexico southward to Colombia, Venezuela, and parts of the upper Amazon and its tributaries in Peru, Bolivia, and Brazil. Plantations have been established within its natural range and elsewhere.

The Tree: Sometimes 150ft in height and 6ft and more in diameter above the heavy buttresses; boles are clear from 60 to 80ft.

The Wood

General Characteristics: Heartwood reddish, pinkish, salmon colored, or yellowish when fresh; deepening with age to deep rich red or brown; distinct from the yellowish or whitish sapwood. Luster high and golden; texture rather fine to coarse; grain straight to roey, wavy, or curly, often with an attractive figure; odor and taste not distinctive.

Weight: Basic specific gravity (oven-dry weight/green volume) 0.40 to 0.68; air-dry density 30 to 52pcf.

Mechanical Properties: (First two sets of data based on the 2-in. standard, the third on the 2-cm standard.)
Janka side hardness 740lb for green material and 800lb for dry. Forest Products Laboratory toughness average for green and dry material 82in.-lb (5/8-in. specimen).

Drying and Shrinkage: The wood can be air-seasoned and kiln-dried easily without appreciable warping or checking. Kiln schedule T6-D4 is suggested for 4/4 stock and t3-D3 for 8/4. Shrinkage green to oven-dry: radial 3.0%; tangential 4.1%; volumetric 7.8%. Movement after manufacture is rated as small.

Working Properties: Very easy to work with hand and machine tools. Easy to finish, and takes an excellent polish. Slices and rotary cuts into fine veneer.

Durability: Generally heartwood rates as durable in resistance to a brown-rot and a white-rot fungus. Moderately resistant to dry-wood termites and little resistance to attack by marine borers.

Preservation: Both heartwood and sapwood are resistant to impregnation with preservatives.

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