Wenge wood or wenge is a quality exotic wood, very versatile and with a characteristic dark color. In fact, it is one of the darkest woods in existence.
It is obtained from a tree whose scientific name is Millettia laurentii. It is common to confuse it with another wood called panga-panga, which belongs to the same family, Millettia stuhlmannii, and which has some similarities.
It is native to the central area of the African continent. From countries like Tanzania, Mozambique, Congo or Cameroon. The species is threatened because its population has been reduced by more than 50% during the last three generations, although it is not yet at risk of extinction.
O the price of wenge is high, and is expected to continue to increase due to this situation of increasing scarcity.
It is a heavy material, of great hardness that allows very fine joinery work. It offers great results in indoor and outdoor environments and its resistance ensures good durability. Its dark tone gives it an interesting aspect of sophisticated minimalism that has made it one of the reference materials in the latest trends in all types of furniture for home and office.
Color: The sapwood is slightly whitish and the heartwood is dark brown to black. This combination produces a really distinct and striking grain. The color of the wenge can darken over time, especially in dark places where sunlight is not intense.
Fiber: In a straight line
Grain: Medium to rough.
Density: Density of approximately 870 kg / m³ at 12% humidity.
Toughness (Monnin): 9.1 is a wood between difficult and very difficult.
Durability: It is durable, as it resists moisture and the attack of insects and fungi.
- Volumetric contraction coefficient: 0.69% of nervous wood.
- Resistance to static bending 1,800 kg / cm³.
- Modulus of elasticity 180,000 kg / cm³.
- Compressive strength 800 kg / cm³.
- Sawing and machining with some problems due to the hardness of the wood and the wear it produces on the tool.
- Slow drying Risk of deformation and cracking.
- Nailed and screwed – requires pre-drills.
- Finishing and bonding: the heartwood is not impregnable, and the general adhesion is low due to the presence of tannins.
- It is advisable to use a mask when working with wenge wood. Although severe allergic reactions are rare, they can cause skin and eye irritation and affect the central nervous system with colic.
Uses of Wood Wenge
- Manufacture of all types of wenge furniture: cabinets, kitchen furniture.
- Musical instruments.
- Floors or platforms.
- Wood veneers.
- Interior carpentry: doors, windows, moldings, cladding …
- Outdoor carpentry.
- Flip and sculpt.
Wenge color and fashions
Wenge wood is common in manufacturers’ catalogs, both in veneers and in those that imitate it through the use of melamine. It is very difficult to find a manufacturer of floors, doors or furniture that does not have wenge among its striking designs.
Color has been a trend, especially over the past decade. Although it has already decreased a little. You can also find them in paints, vinyls and even hair dyes.