Eucalyptus wood is a highly resistant wood, suitable even for outdoor use, but difficult to work with. Although it has one of the greatest potentials for exploration, its bad reputation makes it go unnoticed as a timber species.
It arrived in Spain in the middle of the 19th century and is widespread. This tree is also used for reforestation due to its relatively rapid growth. It is easily recognizable by the strips its bark emits.
If the necessary time is allowed, it reaches 60 meters without problems, although it can exceed 130. The latter are older specimens that were in good condition and did not compete with other specimens on land, water or electricity. There are more than 700 types of eucalyptus, most of which are Australian.
Eucalyptus wood is one of the best options for obtaining cellulose. This is the main use of eucalyptus.
In most cases the plantations are focused on obtaining very high yields and not on quality solid wood, the pruning and planting densities have not been optimal. In the cases in which it was well executed, a wood with very good mechanical performance was obtained, even suitable for construction. In this sense, the white eucalyptus wood (Eucalyptus Globulus), which is normally marketed under the name of eucalyptus wood.
Note: White eucalyptus is also known as blue eucalyptus.
Characteristics of Eucalyptus Wood
Color: Heartwood light brown, almost yellow. Light sapwood or light gray.
Grain: Medium to thick.
Hardness and density: It has an approximate density of 780-830 kg / m3 At 12% humidity, however, it is not uniform throughout the trunk. Semi-heavy.
Toughness: It is a semi-hard wood with 3.9 in the Monnin test
Durability: Moderately durable. Susceptible to insect attack. It can be used without problems outdoors, as long as it is treated correctly.
Dimensional stability: It is a wood with significant internal stresses. These are older in young trees and relax over time.
- Volumetric contraction coefficient: 0.73% of wood between nervous and very nervous.
- Compressive strength: 760 kg / cmtwo
- Static flexural strength: 1,420 kg / cmtwo
- Modulus of elasticity: 165,000 kg / cmtwo
Workability: Offers good results with manual and mechanical tools.
- Sawn. Difficult due to the stress of the tree as it grows. Requires very sharp saws.
- Drying. Complexes, cracks and / or curvatures may appear. It is considered that the best way to dry eucalyptus wood is with extremely careful steam-based treatments, with temperatures not exceeding 60º.
- Brushed. No difficulty.
- Glued. Easy.
- Nailed and screwed. Easy, although it is advisable to make pre-holes to avoid cracks.
- Finish. OK
For large pieces, it is always ideal to glue several smaller pieces to obtain the desired square. It is due to the risk of curvature inherent to eucalyptus wood.
Price: Moderate price in hardwoods. It is because it is a common species in plantations and / or reforestation.
Uses of eucalyptus
- Manufacture of paper pulp. This is one of the main uses of eucalyptus, exceeding 80%. It has high performance in obtaining paper pulp and its chemical structure allows to avoid the use of chlorine. Therefore, it is also a more environmentally friendly process than manufacturing with other woods.
- It has been used for the manufacture of structural wood for several decades, laminated wood or beams.
- Poles Nailed to the floor, estimated to last between 5 and 15 years.
- Manufacture of chipboard, MDF and HDF.
- Decorative wood veneers. Good unwinding performance.
- Interior and exterior carpentry. Doors, windows, furniture …
- It is also used in the manufacture of chemical products, mainly related to the pharmaceutical industry. It is due to obtaining your oil. It can be used to make cleaning products, disinfectants, antivirals or anti-congestants (syrups, pills, candies …).
What does white eucalyptus wood offer?
As already mentioned, there are several hundred types of eucalyptus. Among these, white eucalyptus stands out, also the most abundant in Spain. This presents a higher density, hardness and impact resistance. It is also easy to bend at will, allowing us to get out of the right angles for certain uses.
It has a lighter color and better impregnation, which allows very good finishes.