Log Description

Family Leguminosae ( Caesalpiniaceae)
Botanical Names Hymenaea courbaril
Continent Latin America
CITES (Washington convention of 2017)
No trade Restrictions
Diameter 50 to 80 cm
Thickness of Sapwood 3 – 12 cm
Buoyancy Does not float
Log Conservation Moderate (Treatment recommended)

Wood Description

Reference colour Sapwood Texture Grain Interlocked grain Notes
Red brown Clearly demarcated Medium Straight or interlocked Slight Wood has internal stresses. Colour can vary from purple brown or orangey brown to red brown with some veins.

Flat Sawn

Quarter Sawn

Physical and Mechanical properties

Property Mean Value
Density* 0.94
Monnin hardness* 10.5
Coefficient of volumetric shrinkage 0.59 % per %
Total tangential shrinkage (Ts) 7.5 %
Total Radial shrinkage (Rs) 3.9 %
T/R anisotropy ratio 1.9
Fibre Saturation point 23 %
Thermal conductivity 0.30 W/(m.K.)
Lower heating value 18,920 kJ/kg
Crushing strength* 97 MPa
Static bending strength* 160 MPa
Longitudinal modulus elasticity* 23,460 MPa
* At 12% moisture content, with 1Mpa = 1N/mm2

Natural durability & Treatability

Resistance to decay Class 2-3 – durable to moderately durable
Resistance to dry wood borers Class D – durable (sapwood demarcated, risk limited sapwood)
Resistance to termites Class M – moderately durable
Treatability Class 4 – non-treatable
Use class covered by natural durability Class 3 – not in ground contact ,outside


This species is listed in the NF EN 350 standard. Variable resistance to decay and termites depending on species. According to the European standard NF EN 335 of May 2013, performance length might be modified by conditions in which it is used.

Preservation Treatment

Against dry wood borer attacks. This wood does not require any preservation treatment.
In case of temporary humidification This wood does not require any preservation treatment
In case of permanent humidification Use of this wood is not recommended

Sawing and Machining

Blunting effect Fairly high
Tooth for sawing Stellite tipped
Machining tools Tungsten carbide
Suitability for peeling Not recommended or without interest
Suitability for slicing Good
Notes Sawdust may cause allergies


Drying rate Slow
Risk of distortion Slight risk
Risk of case hardening No known specific risk
Risk of checking Slight risk
Risk of collapse Initial air drying under cover is recommended prior to kiln drying. More or less risk of splits depending on specific gravity
Suggested drying schedule Schedule # 8


Nailing/ Screwing Good but pre – boring necessary.
Notes High specific gravity: important that gluing be performed in compliance with the code of practice and instructions for the glue used.

Cross sections of Hymenaea courbaril

Commercial Grading

Sawn timber appearance grading

According to NHLA grading rules (2015) Possible grading: FAS, Select, Common 1, Common 2, Common 3 In French Guiana, the local name of this species is Courbaril. Grading is done according to local rules Bois guyanais classes (1990) Possible grading : Choice1, Choice 2, Choice 3, Choice 4.

Fire Safety

Conventional French grading Thickness > 14 mm: M3 (moderately inflammable)
Thickness < 14 mm: M4 (easily inflammable)
Euroclass grading D-s2, d0
Default grading for solid wood that meets requirements of European standard NF EN 14081-1 (April 2016): structural graded timber in vertical uses and ceilings with minimal mean density of 0.35 and minimal thickness of 22 mm.

Visual structure grading

According to French standard NF B 52- 001-1 (2011) and associated national standards, strengths classes D50 can be provided by visual grading.

Main End uses

  • Arched goods
  • Turned goods
  • Ship building ( ribs)
  • Cabinetry (high-end furniture)
  • Stairs (inside)
  • Vehicle or container flooring
  • Musical instruments
  • Panelling
  • Tool handles
  • Built- in furniture or mobile item
  • Moulding


End uses in permanently humid conditions ( water or ground contact) are possible with species with very good durability