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 Silver Beech Nothofagus menziesii

Product qualities

Silver beech is variable in colour, from light brownish-pink (South Island), to brownish-red (North Island). Colour variation occurs with geographical location, age and sapwood content, which tends to be light greyish-pink.

The grain is straight with a fine, even texture.

New Zealand Silver Beech is well recognised in New Zealand as a medium density hardwood with excellent wood properties and compares favourably in terms of physical and mechanical properties with some of the world’s finest quality hardwood species.

Uses and applications

Furniture & Flooring, Panelling, Profiles.

Physical and mechanical Properties

Properties Silver beech (South Island) Silver beech (North Island)
Density (at 12% moisture content) 545-610 kg/m3 705 kg/m3
Tangential shrinkage (green to 12% moisture content) 5.7%  
Radial shrinkage (green to 12% moisture content) 3.1%  
Hardness*The hardness rating of a timber species is measured by the Janka Test. This is a standard test which measures the penetration into the timber of a common load and projectile. The results relate to a hardness capacity of the material and are expressed in kN. Typical 35 year old radiata has hardness of 4.2kN (dry) 4.5 kN  
Modulus of elasticity*These average strength properties are based on testing short clear lengths of timber and are not used for structural design under the building code. Characteristic stresses used for structural design are determined from structural grades. Click here for more... 9.5 GPa 13.0 GPa
Modulus of rupture*These average strength properties are based on testing short clear lengths of timber and are not used for structural design under the building code. Characteristic stresses used for structural design are determined from structural grades. Click here for more... 85 MPa 122 MPa
Shear strength parallel to grain*These average strength properties are based on testing short clear lengths of timber and are not used for structural design under the building code. Characteristic stresses used for structural design are determined from structural grades. Click here for more... 12.5 MPa  
Compression strength parallel to grain*These average strength properties are based on testing short clear lengths of timber and are not used for structural design under the building code. Characteristic stresses used for structural design are determined from structural grades. Click here for more... 47 MPa  

Silver beech has excellent strength to density ratio, excellent bending properties, excellent toughness and good stability once dry (12% m.c.).

The fine and even texture allows for uniform wearing.

Sawing, machining, finishing, turning and steam bending properties are all excellent. The wood does not contain a high silica content so is less likely to blunt cutting knives than other beech species.

Minimal sanding is required after machining to achieve a smooth high quality finish.

Silver beech glues, stains and paints well.

It seasons evenly with little degrade and remains free from distortion when fully seasoned.

Silver beech air-dries rapidly, and is less prone to tension wood, split, warp or collapse than other hardwoods.

Moderately easy to split. Satisfactory nailing with care.

The product has no odor.

Availability

Normally available in the marketplace

Natural durability

The heartwood is classified as non durable. The sapwood is also non-durable.

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