Afromosia Wood (Pericopsis Elata)  

Afromosia wood is a unique kind of wood that comes from Africa. It’s strong, lasts long, and is easy to work with.

It is also resistant to termites, mold, and mildew by nature. It looks different because it is a beautiful yellow-brown color with dark lines.

Wood is becoming increasingly common as a furniture material in modern homes. Wood can be used to make stylish desks, beds, and closets.

This article is about Afromosia wood, one of the most interesting wood. This wood is very nice and has a lot of things that make it beautiful.

Afromosia Wood General properties

Afromosia is a big tree that grows in the forests of Central and West Africa. It is used to make things like floors and furniture. Its business is governed.

For reproduction, the trunk must be at least 32 cm wide, and for flowering, it must be at least 37 cm wide. In 7 months, the fruit will be ready.

Trees can live for more than 400 years, even though their trunks aren’t very big.

This beautiful, strong, rot- and bug-resistant wood has been used instead of teak in its home country of Africa (thus earning its nickname, “African Teak”).

It works and moves like teak and looks like teak, but it isn’t oily. Afrormosia has done well in harsh conditions for a long time, which shows that the comparisons are accurate.

Its heartwood can be a muted tan, muted gold, or light to medium brown, with darker stripes that can be different colors and lengths and run along its usually straight or wavy grain.

Even though it looks “fuzzy” like teak, it is fine-grained and has a nice natural shine when sanded. Over time, the wood will get darker, looking more like Black Walnut than Teak.

Even though afromosia is much harder than teak, it’s usually easy to work with. Turning it, gluing it, and finishing it are all simple tasks.

Other Names For Afromosia Wood

The flowering plant species Pericopsis elata is a member of the Fabaceae family. It is also known as afromosia, afrormosia, kokrodua, and assamela. Another name for it is African teak.

The Pericopsis elata tree can reach heights of 40–50 meters and widths of up to 130 centimeters as it matures. The tree is most commonly known by the native name afrormosia.

Other names include ole and oleo pardo in Congo, bohalala and ole in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, ejen, obang in Cameroon, Mohole in Ghana, and ayin, aneran, and elo Uta in Ethiopia. It is also known as ole in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (Nigeria).

Only the wet, semi-deciduous woods of Africa contain this rare and valuable variety of teak wood, also known as African Teak or gold teak because of the color of its heartwood when it is dry (West and Central Africa).

Aesthetics

“Afromosia wood” is derived from the word “afrormosia,” which refers to a tree whose hue ranges from golden to darker brown to a dark, rich tone resembling walnut.

A robust wood that can be worked with both hand tools and machines, afrormosia can be found throughout Africa. Although it is sturdy, it can be bent without breaking.

Africans have utilized it for the construction of boats for hundreds of years. It works well for turning, as well as for gluing and finishing. The wavy grain patterns that it often possesses also lend it the appearance of being an exquisitely beautiful exotic wood.

Availability

Although the commercialization of this species is subject to stringent controls and regulations, reasonable-sized chunks of wood are nonetheless available for purchase. Obtainable from retail establishments that focus exclusively on the sale of wood.

Pricing

Prices for imported hardwoods are in the middle to high range.

Afrormosia (Quarter Sawn) 4/4 Lumber Random Widths, Random Lengths $15.19 / Board Feet.

Afromosia Hardwood Sample (1/2″x3″x6″).

Afrormosia (Quarter Sawn) 8/4 Lumber Random Widths, Random Lengths $15.99 / Board Feet.

Afrormosia (Quarter Sawn) 4/4 Project Pack: 20 Board Feet $439.00 /Pack.

Afrormosia (Quarter Sawn) 4/4 Craft Pack: 10 Board Feet of Lumber $239.00 /Pack.

Afrormosia Turning Squares: 1-3/4″ x 1-3/4″ x 18″ $14.40 ea.

Geography

The forests of West and Central Africa are where afrormosia grows. Cameroon and the Democratic Republic of the Congo haven’t many wild animals. (DRC).

Before the middle of the 20th century, finding a tree where it belonged was easy. But after its wood was sold worldwide in 1948, its range shrank quickly.

It is no longer found in Ivory Coast, and other than the DRC, where it is still threatened, it is only found in small patches in a few other countries.

It is a crucial pioneer plant for fire-damaged areas because its bark is resistant to fire, and its roots fix nitrogen.

Maintenance    

Most of the time, afrormosia lumber is like teak lumber in that it is hard, heavy, and strong. It’s not hard to work with; you can glue it together with simple tools.

Hard to get through. If you don’t finish afrormosia, it will turn gray like any other natural wood.

If the preservatives don’t get deep enough, it’s almost impossible to treat.

Sustainability   

This kind of wood is in CITES Appendix II and on the IUCN Red List.

It is in danger because more than half of its population has died in the last three generations. This is because humans have hunted it and made its natural habitat smaller.

CITES has put Afromosia hardwood in Appendix II because of its growing demand.

The good news is that CITES protection has strengthened forestry practices around afrormosia, which has increased the value of the species.

Before the increase in demand, afrormosia might have been thrown away as a waste product from the trade of other species, like Sapele, Utile, or African Mahogany.

Afrormosia is no longer going to waste because there is more demand for it, and it is better protected.

Is Afromosia Hard or Softwood

Wood Type: Hardwood.

Afrormosia Wood is an African hardwood used in building materials such as floors, paneling, and cabinets.

In contrast to the simple structure of softwoods, the end grain patterns and designs of the world’s hardwoods are very complex.

This complexity shows how hard (and fun) it can be to tell what kind of wood something is. An unknown piece of wood could be almost anything, but as more of it is looked at, the number of possible things it could be getting smaller.

Still, most things can be described better, and the genus or family of the wood can usually be figured out. First, the body’s biggest and most obvious parts are looked at.

Afromosia wood stain

When iron comes in contact with wet wood, the wood often turns dark. The wood looks teak, but it doesn’t feel oily. It has a lot of value on the world market.

When nails are driven into the wood, it tends to split, but it holds nails and screws well; pre-boring is recommended. Gluing is fine as long as it is done carefully, so it doesn’t leave a mark.

This veneer can be stained in many colors and is often used inside buildings and boats.

Afromosia Wood identification

The height of the tree might reach fifty meters.

The length of the bole ranges from 30 to 32 meters.

It is twisted. After reaching a height of 2.5 meters, it flutes before being bolstered.

The diameter of the trunk ranges from 100 to 200 centimeters.

Color and appearance

Heartwood is yellowish-brown and sometimes has a reddish or olive tint to it. As it ages, it gets darker. The dark, wider heartwood differs from the thin, pale yellow sapwood.

Afrormosia is a large tree that grows in the forests of West and Central Africa. It can grow to be 60 m tall and 1.5 m wide. The trunk is about 30 m tall and has gray bark with red spots.

Teak is the same color, feels the same, and has the same grain as Afrormosia wood lumber.

It looks great and is used when quality and appearance are more important than cost, and a uniform, rich look is desired.

The heartwood is yellow-brown, and as it ages, it gets darker. The lighter sapwood has clear lines.

Endgrain

People often use afrormosia instead of teak, even though teak is usually semi-ring porous.

Iroko, which looks like afrormosia and is sometimes called “African teak,” is another type of wood. Iroko, on the other hand, has bigger and less numerous pores. You can also mix up satinwoods and afrormosia.

Flower

The flower is greenish-white and looks like a pea. The Afromosia flower will change into a fruit pod with wings at the end.

The flowers are purple-pink and grow in sprays up to 15 cm long. The flower stems and flower buds are a light shade of brown. Hairy.

Pericopsis elata has flowers that are both male and female. These flowers grow in clusters called panicles, and their stems can be hairy or smooth.

Fruit

Pods that grow in big groups and are flat. They are 24 cm long, start pale green and turn yellow-brown, and have narrow wings on both ends. Inside are one to three flat, orange-brown seeds.

Afrormosia fruit is a flat, hanging pod that doesn’t open and is spread by the wind. It has a ” reticulate ” pattern and two thin, long ridges.

This long fruit is rough on the outside and has sharp points at each end.

One to four or five seeds are inside the fruit, and you can see where they are from the outside. These seeds are about 1 to 1.5 cm wide and flat.

Grain and Texture

Most of the time, the grain is straight, but sometimes it can be bent.

It has a good shine because it is natural, and it is fine and smooth.

The heartwood of this West African hardwood turns a rich orange-brown color as it ages. The straight to interlocked grain looks like a rope when cut in a circle.

People say that the small groups of pores on the wood’s surface make it look like it has a rippled shine. When surfaces are cut into quarters, they look mottled.

Even though it is not oily, the grain is about as fine as teak. It works well and isn’t too hard to make better. It doesn’t break down or get bugs, so it lasts a long time.

Leaves

It has 4–10 pairs of leaflets, with one leaflet in the middle. Each leaflet is oval with a rounded tip and can be up to 6 cm long. The top is blue-green and leathery, while the bottom is lighter green.

It is a plant that goes through an annual process of shedding its leaves and produces flowers after the primary dry season.

Each piece of paper is between 3 and 9.5 cm long and 2 and 4 cm wide. The leaflets get bigger as the leaf gets bigger.

Because their veins are so small, you can’t see them, and the underside is more or less clear. The rachis is 2 and 5 mm long and has linear, long-lasting, and filiform-subulate stipels.

The light leaves are held up by branches that are first straight and then bend down and spread out.

odor

The odor of afrormosia is quite pungent whenever it is being worked on. Smells fresh and inviting all at once.

Tree

Except in Nigeria, a big tree grows to be 45m tall and 1.2m wide or a little more.

Sapwood is thin and about 12 mm wide. It is a slightly lighter color than the brownish heartwood. When it is first cut, the heartwood is yellowish-brown.

Over time, it turns a pleasing brownish-yellow color, similar to teak but has a finer texture and isn’t oily.

When dried, the wood weighs about 710 kg/m3 and has a straight to wavy grain.

Afromosia wood bark

Smooth, pale gray-white gets darker as it ages and peels to reveal a reddish-brown layer underneath; between 0.5 and cm of bark cover the afrormosia tree.

The top layer of the slash is green, while the rest is yellow and gets darker as it’s exposed to light. It can be up to 130 cm wide at breast height.

Scars are rubbed with pulped bark to relieve pain. Plasmodium falciparum strains resistant to more than one drug did not die very well when the leaves were extracted with methanol.

Stilbene derivatives found in the wood can kill bacteria, fight malaria, and lower blood sugar.     

Afromosia Wood Pros  and Cons       

Rot resistance

It doesn’t get eaten by termites or other bugs and doesn’t break down, so it’s a very strong material.

West Africa is where Afrormosia is from. It is a beautiful, strong, rot- and bug-resistant wood that has been used as a replacement for Teak (Tectona grandis), giving it the nickname “African Teak.”

Use Afrormosia wood to make something that will last a long time because it doesn’t rot.

Strength and Durability 

Because afrormosia is a species that is naturally hardy and strong, its wood was once used to build ships and stood in for teak.

This species’ resistance to decay is inconsistent, so it can only be called durable.

Even though it doesn’t have any preservatives added to it, it can be used for outdoor joinery and other similar projects.

Natural Durability

Fungi: classes 1-2: very hardy to hardy

Dry wood borer: long-lasting – Sapwood marked (risk limited to sapwood)

• Termites: Class D – Durable Class 4: In the ground or freshwater. Class 5: No species.

Heartwood is usually not eaten by termites because it is solid. When something wet touches iron, it can leave dark marks.

Allergies and Toxicity

People say that afrormosia makes people more sensitive, even though severe reactions are rare. Most of the time, the most common reactions are irritation of the eyes, skin, and lungs.

Afrormosia has also been known to affect the nervous system and cause asthma-like symptoms, which makes it more likely for splinters to get infected.

Sawdust was said to bother the eyes, so there needed to be a lot of airflow.

Water resistance

Afrormosia is harder than teak, and afrormosia is more expensive. It doesn’t get wet and is very stable against the effects of nature.

Even though this hardwood can handle water, it shouldn’t be used in places with a lot of water to keep it from rotting.

Workability

You can work with afrormosia by hand or with power tools. But sanding boards with the interlocking grain can cause them to tear out.

Other problems are that the cutting edges get dull, and dark stains form if the iron is left in contact with wet wood. It’s easy to turn, glue, stain, and finish afrormosia.

Finishes well, spins smoothly, sticks well, and only slightly bends when steam is applied.

SAWING: It is moderately easy to see.

ROTARY VENEER CUTTING: Suitable for slicing.

BLUNTING EFFECT: Moderate blunting effect; satellite blades for sawing and carbide tools for machining are advised.

MACHINING: Possible difficulties caused by interlocked grain are reported.

PLANING: Easy to do, but tools must be sharpened carefully.

MOULDING: Moderately easy; tools must be cautiously sharpened.

BORING: Moderately easy; tools must be cautiously sharpened.

MORTISING: Moderately easy; tools must be cautiously sharpened.

NAILING: Pre-boring is necessary.

GLUING: Difficult to glue because of high density.

SANDING: Easy to perform; it gives good results.

POLISHING: Can be polished without surface preparation.

STEAM BENDING: This species can be used for steam bending.

RESPONSE TO HAND TOOLS: No particular problems.

Afromosia wood uses

Hardwood wood from this tree is very valuable on the market because of its texture, strength, density, and ability to last for a long time. It is used to make veneers, furniture, and boats.

Afrormosia wood can be used to make many different things. Since tropical wood is naturally strong, beautiful, and good for the environment, it makes sense to use it for building materials and panels.

Most of the time, these woods are used in protected places in classes 2 and 3 of tropical zones.

So, less durability is needed for building something light than for building something heavy.

The first thing to look at for this type of use is how the wood works and how stable it is. When wood can be seen, its appearance is also taken into account.

Afrormosia has been a popular building material in Europe for a long time, especially for high-end homes and businesses.

Afromosia for Outdoor Furniture

Tropical wood is the best choice for most outdoor uses, especially outdoor joinery because it is naturally resistant to damage from insects, fungi, and other types of decay. It is also beautiful and good for the environment.

One of the most common uses of tropical wood in France and other countries in Western Europe that get their wood from the three tropical producing zones is for outdoor furniture (Asia – South America – Africa).

For exterior joinery, the species must be naturally durable or have a high level of impregnability. They also need to have a density of at least 0.45. Think about how it looks and how stable it is as well.

  • Cladding and outer coating
  • Windows and doors
  • Shutters and closures

Afromosia for Carpentry and interior fittings

Tropical wood is the best choice for most home furniture because it is strong, beautiful, and good for the environment.

Tropical wood comes in a wide range of colors and styles. This gives you a lot of ways to make your home unique and give it more personality. It also works well in public buildings and social housing.

It gives any room warmth, charm, and an authentic look and can stand up to the wear and tear of everyday life.

  • Wooden floors
  • Interior staircases
  • Doors and door frames
  • Molding
  • Interior paneling and cladding
  • Layout and furnishings
  • Furniture and cabinetmaking

Afromosia for Outdoor equipment – Recreation

Since tropical wood is naturally resistant to decay, insect, and fungus attacks, it is the best choice for outdoor and recreation facilities. It also looks good and fits in with the surroundings.

In this case, it is right in the open and could always be wet.

Most of the time, this kind of wood will be used in small or medium-sized pieces, so it needs to be stable.

  • Exterior staircases and guard railing
  • Single-level terraces and pool areas
  • Elevated terraces, balconies, and corridors
  • Shelters, outdoor furniture, and playgrounds
  • Gates
  • Visual barriers and windbreak panels, pergolas

Afromosia for Shipbuilding

The natural makeup of tropical wood makes it resistant to decay, fungi, insects, and other attacks. It looks good and is good for the environment, which makes it perfect for building ships, creating decks, and decorating inside and outside.

You should be careful when choosing these kinds of items because they can be used in ways that have very different needs for how well woodwork. But these uses are listed below because they sell the same thing to the same market.

Some kinds of wood will need to have a very high level of natural durability, while others will need to have certain mechanical or aesthetic qualities.

  • Boat decks and planking
  • Pleasure-boating pontoons

Afromosia for Various Purposes

Tropical wood is naturally strong and doesn’t break down or rot. It looks nice and is good for the environment, so it makes sense to use it to make expensive things.

In this way, you can also use valuable or almost valuable species, which raises the product’s value.

The way the wood looks is the main thing used in choosing it. Wood species that don’t move around much are easier to work with.

But you don’t have to have this property. Valuable species like Ebony and Rosewood are often hard to work with and not very stable.

The wood can’t be too heavy, or it will be hard to move the finished product.

Turning, making knives, and making brushes.

Afromosia vs. Teak Wood

African Teak, also known as afrormosia, is a cheaper alternative to teak that can be used to decorate your home with wood.

As minimalist furniture and decorations become more popular, there is also more demand for high-quality wood slabs.

This kind of wood comes from Africa and looks like Burmese Teak. Because of what it can do and how good it looks, afrormosia has become more popular in recent years. Here are a few reasons this solid wood is good for making furniture.

Afromosia’s Characteristics

Afromosia from West Africa, mostly Cameroon, Ghana, and Ivory Coast, is a good alternative to teak. Some people call it “African Teak” because it looks like Burmese Teak with its honey-brown color and grain.

If you put Afromosia outside, it can handle the weather pretty well. This is because it has a moderate amount of silica, which gives it its famous ability to resist water.

Even though Afromosia is still not good for marine uses, it is perfect for what home builders do with teak.

Unlike Teak, Afromosia doesn’t start golden like teak until it’s been exposed to UV light. Some might say that Afromosia looks even better than teak without waiting.

When you look past the surface, Afromosia still makes sense. Because it is hard and stable, it is a good choice for milling things like trim and flooring. Because it doesn’t have an oily surface like teak, it is easier to finish.

Appearance

Afromosia has the same golden brown color and grain as Burmese Teak.

If your design plans call for cheap teak, this is a good substitute because it looks pretty much the same and has a lot of good qualities.

But it is essential to know that afrormosia is sensitive to light and will change color over time, while Burmese Teak is not. In addition, it looks less glossy than teak, which has a shinier appearance.

Cost and Availability

Afrormosia costs half as much as the more expensive type of teak wood. Popular exotic woods also cost more because they are hard to find.

Can you think of all the different ways you could design something if it were cheaper and easier to get?

Hardness

Afrormosia is harder than teak, but afrormosia is more expensive. It doesn’t get wet and is very stable against the effects of nature. It works well for flooring, slab doors, and finishing materials.

African teak is still one of the higher-quality woods that can be bought reasonably.

As more people want it, the price of afrormosia lumber and finished goods will rise. It seems like a good investment that could make you more money over time.

Afromosia Wood Related species

People often call Afrormosia African Teak or iroko (Milicia excelsa), but neither of these names is related to real Teak (Tectona grandis).

Afrormosia is the same weight and strength as teak. It also looks the same and doesn’t rot (though some pieces can be a yellower golden brown and more closely resemble satinwood, especially when freshly sawed).

Afrormosia is less expensive than real teak, but it is an endangered species protected by CITES.

Another related species, Pericopsis laxiflora, is a much smaller tree not protected by CITES. It makes things similar to wood, but because it is so small, it doesn’t have much economic potential.

Pericopsis Laxiflora

Pericopsis laxiflora is either a shrub or a tree, and in the fall, its leaves fall off. It can grow from 9 to 13 meters tall or as a shrub up to 2 meters tall.

The top of the tree is crooked and hangs down. People often pick a tree from the wild and use them as medicine.

It makes high-quality lumber, but only in small amounts, so it can’t be used for a business.

Wood is valuable because it is used to make hoes, pestles, and the rims and hubs of wagon wheels.

Except for small surface inspections, the air dries slowly but doesn’t damage much.

Small amounts of shrinkage happen, and once it’s dry, it’s pretty stable in service. The wood is used as fuel.

It is hard to light, but it gives off a lot of heat and not much ash. You can also use it to make charcoal.

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