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EUROPEAN WHITE BEECH

V. Ryan 2008

 

Fagus sylvatica
Family: Fagaceae

Commercial names: English, Danish, French etc. according to country of origin.

Distribution: Throughout central Europe and U.K. also found in West Asia.
 
 
 


General Description: The heartwood is very pale white to pinkbrown. Some logs have a dark red kern or darker veining. Beech has a straight grain and fine, even texture. Average weight 720 kg/m3 (45lb/ft3); specific gravity 0.72.

Mechanical Properties: The steam bending properties are exceptionally good, even tolerant of knots and irregular grain. It has medium stiffness, high crushing strength and medium resistance to shock loads.

Working Properties: The ease of working varies with growth conditions and seasoning. Tough material or badly dried timber will bind on saws, burn when crosscut and be difficult to plane. Beech offers medium resistance to hand and power tools and has a moderate blunting effect on cutting edges. Pre-boring is necessary for nailing, it glues easily, stains well and takes an excellent finish.

Durability: The wood is perishable, liable to attack by common furniture beetle and by death watch beetle in old buildings. Sapwood is affected by longhorn beetle. The timber is permeable for preservation treatment.

Uses: Cabinet making, high class joinery, solid and laminated furniture, desks and work benches, chair making, shoe heels, sportswear, toys, tool handles and turning. More European Beech is consumed in the U.K. than any other hardwood.
 

 
 
 
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