Oak wood is perhaps, alongside pine, the most popular wood. This is due to its excellent relationship between quality, appearance, strength and ease of work. It is one of Favorite options for carpenters and consumers.

From an aesthetic point of view, it is the reference wood for many. It is impossible to find in the catalog of any flooring or plank manufacturer several types of oak: aged, white, natural, dark … These designs are also among the best sellers.

There are significant variations in the price of oak wood. This is due to type, availability, abundance, etc. It is not cheap wood, but thanks to its abundance and considering its quality, it is also not excessively expensive. Other woods with similar characteristics have a significantly higher price.

We can find in Northern Europe, in the eastern half of North America, Canada, Japan, Turkey, North Africa or Asia Minor. In the case of Spain, the largest populations are found in the north of the peninsula (Galicia, Cantabrian Coast and Pyrenees).

It is a relatively slow-growing tree, unless conditions are especially favorable. It can reach up to 40 meters in height and 3 in diameter. It grows up to 200 years old, although it can easily reach 600. In addition to wood, the oak also produces fruits, the acorn.

Oak subspecies or types

types of oaks
  • European Oak (Quercus robur) As its name implies, it originates from the European continent, from northern Spain to Norway.
  • American White Oak (Quercus alba) Its tones range from light brown to olive, with the sapwood almost white. We can find it in the eastern United States.
  • American Oak Red (Quercus rubra) Light brown with slightly reddish lines, the sapwood is also whitish. Similar to white oak, although slightly inferior to it. Also something cheaper.

Other types of oak that we can find are: Japanese oak, black American oak, Turkish oak …

Characteristics of oak wood European

Color: From light yellow in the sapwood to brown in the heart.

Fiber: Direct.

Grain: Medium.

Density: Semi-heavy wood, between 700-770 kg / m3 density with a moisture content of 12%.

Toughness: Medium hardwood with 5.8 in the Monnin test.

Durability: Moderate. It has good resistance to moisture. In fact, oak has been used for centuries to make ships. It is resistant against fungi and moderately against termites.

Dimensional stability:

  • Volumetric contraction coefficient: 0.48 moderately edgy wood.

Mechanical properties:

  • Compressive strength: 580 kg / cmtwo
  • Static flexural strength: 1,070 kg / cmtwo
  • Modulus of elasticity: 115,000 kg / cmtwo

Impregnation: Impregnable sapwood, heartwood not impregnable.

Workability:

  • Sawn. No problem, except for its resistance.
  • Drying. Slow, with risk of collapse and cracking.
  • Brushed. Smoothly.
  • Glued. Problems with alkaline and acid glues.
  • Nailed and screwed. Requires knockouts.
  • Finish. No problems, except with the application of acidic products.

Characteristics of white oak wood

Color: Creamy sapwood, light brown heartwood.

Fiber: Direct.

Grain: Medium.

Density: Semi-heavy wood, approximately 740 kg / m3 at 12% humidity.

Toughness: It is a semi-hardwood with 5.1 in the Monnin test.

Durability: Durable environment.

Dimensional stability:

  • Volumetric contraction coefficient: 0.43% moderately edgy wood.

Mechanical properties:

  • Compressive strength: 513 kg / cmtwo
  • Static flexural strength: 1,050 kg / cmtwo
  • Modulus of elasticity: 123,000 kg / cmtwo

Impregnation: Moderately impregnable sapwood, heart not impregnable.

Workability:

  • Sawn. No problem, except for its resistance.
  • Drying. Slow, with risks of collapse, warping and warping.
  • Brushed. Smoothly.
  • Glued. Problems with alkaline and acid glues.
  • Nailed and screwed. Smoothly.
  • Finish. Smoothly.

Characteristics of American red oak wood

Color: Pale red sapwood, with possible gray tones, and pale red to brown heartwood.

Fiber: Direct.

Grain: Medium.

Density: Semi-heavy wood with a density of approximately 710 kg / m3 at 12% humidity.

Toughness: It is a semi-hardwood with 4.8 in the Monnin test.

Durability: Average durability.

Dimensional stability:

  • Volumetric contraction coefficient: 0.44% moderately nervous wood.

Mechanical properties:

  • Compressive strength: 450 kg / cmtwo
  • Static flexural strength: 960 kg / cmtwo
  • Modulus of elasticity: 113,000 kg / cmtwo

Impregnation: Unassailable impregnable, hard from medium to slightly impregnable.

Workability:

  • Sawn. No problem, except for its resistance.
  • Drying. Slow, with risks of collapse and crash.
  • Brushed. Smoothly.
  • Glued. Problems with alkaline and acid glues.
  • Nailed and screwed. Requires knockouts.
  • Finish. Smoothly.

Main Uses

oak color

Without a doubt, we are facing a of the most versatile woods that exist. We could finish before saying what are the uses of oak wood. Some of these uses stand out:

  • Wine barrels or cooperage. Depending on the type of oak used, different characteristics are obtained. The great wine professionals are even able to determine the subspecies used. Among these, the French oak stands out.
  • Quality furniture. Interior and exterior.
  • Floors or parquets.
  • Decorative plates and plates.
  • Carpentry: baseboards, frames, doors, windows, fences …
  • Spinning.
  • Wooden beams.
  • Manufacture of ships.
  • Construction.