Development of Timber Property Classification Based on the End-Use with Reference to Twenty Sri Lankan Timber Species
An investigation was carried out on selected 20 timber species of Sri Lanka to study different wood properties, i.e., wood density, modulus of rapture, modulus of elasticity, compression parallel to grain, shrinkage/movement, workability (sawing, nailing, sanding and finishing), treatability of preservative, timber durability, timber texture by vessel diameter and some gross properties, timber colour and present timber uses. Based on the results, an attempt was made to classify the studied timber species into property levels. The final objective of this study was to develop relationships between the end-uses of timber and their property requirements and levels with reference to 20 Sri Lankan timber species.
Timber selection for the use in Sri Lanka is species-oriented and sometimes it is based on the traditional use. Based on wood properties of 20 Sri Lankan timber species selected, an attempt was made to recognise the most important wood properties and their levels to develop a four end-use property classification. In general, the proposed end-use property classification in this study could be differentiated as (i.) for building construction, (ii.) for furniture and joinery (iii.) for light construction, and (iv.) for miscellaneous uses. Among the selected timber species, Dipterocarpus zeylanicus is eminently suitable for under-water work. Eucalyptus microcorys is regarded as one of the best timbers for dancing floors. These specialty and causative factors of timber, however, must be explored and documented in order to prepare end-use property classification for miscellaneous use.
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