Beech is one of the most common tree species found in mixed and deciduous forests across much of Europe. It is widely used in the manufacture of furniture. Its wood has great strength, toughness and inelasticity. The density of beech, which will be discussed in the article, depends on the cellular structure and humidity.
What is the density of wood?
This value is called the ratio of mass to volume. It is not constant and depends on the humidity of the environment in which the material is located. The larger the mass of a cubic meter of wood, the denser it is. Therefore, it is customary to use values that correspond to a humidity of 12%. It must always be remembered that the density of beech or some other wood is approximate. This is due to the fact that even the same piece of wood in different atmospheric conditions will have a different density.
This value has a direct impact on the strength and hygroscopicity of wood.A good example: doors for baths are made of linden, aspen or pine, as beech would simply stop closing. Beech density in g/cm3 ranges from 0.65 to 0.9 and depends on the environmental conditions in which the material or product is located.
Features of beech wood
Beech is called the mother of forests because it helps other hardwoods survive and survive. Rainwater that flows from the crown of beech trees has a detrimental effect on weeds that deplete the soil. The voluminous crown prevents evaporation of moisture and drying of the soil, and a large amount of fallen leaves in the fall forms a nutrient layer of humus. The height of the tree sometimes reaches 45 meters with a diameter exceeding a meter. Straight-grained wood has a fine and even structure, while beech wood density and hardness depend on the place of growth. It is noted that rocks from Northern Europe, Denmark and the UK are harder and heavier than those from Romania, Yugoslavia and Central Europe.
Technological properties of beech
Highlight properties such as:
- The ability to hold fasteners made of metal - perpendicularly entering the wood, the nail cuts some of the fibers, while others move apart and hold the metal fastener. The moisture content of the wood makes it easier to hammer, but as it dries, the beech's ability to hold a nail decreases.
- Capable of bending - good for steaming, easy to change shape, so it is used to make bent furniture for offices and residential premises.
- Wear resistance - average value of beech density in kg/m3equal to 680, so the wood has high strength and withstands high mechanical loads. Boards are recommended for floors and stairs.
- Splitting resistance - has a slight resistance to the separation of the structure when the wedge is inserted in the direction of the fibers, and in the radial direction it is less than in the tangential direction. The material is easily processed with hand tools, sawn and pricked.
Beech wood can be processed: sanded, polished and bent. Lumber is easily glued, well stained with dyes.
Advantages and disadvantages of beech
The advantages should include:
- high ductility and flexibility;
- considerable strength, because the density of beech is not inferior to the same parameter of oak;
- ability to withstand fastenings;
- original texture;
- possibility of repainting and bleaching;
- antibacterial properties.
- products do not tolerate dry air, can crack;
- wood is not suitable for making furniture in bathrooms, baths, saunas, because it can rot;
- beech items are very heavy;
- Direct sunlight will change the color of products.
When covering objects with varnish or paint, many troubles can be avoided.
Quality beech and oak wood
Beech and oak belong to the same family, are widely distributed in nature and have similarproperties. Both tree species are characterized by a low growth rate, and the density of beech and oak is close in value. For oak, the indicator is 690 kg/m3. Their distinguishing feature is high strength and hardness. The wood of both oak and beech consists of a fine, uniform texture and does not contain knots, is easily stained and perfectly processed by any carpentry tools. The high wear resistance of rocks allows them to be used in construction for flooring, steps and furniture manufacturing.
It is noted that under the influence of steam, beech acquires the property of bending, and stained gets even greater strength and becomes darker. Beech, unlike oak, dries quickly, is easy to sand and adheres well. But wood from it is susceptible to fungal diseases and mold, and also absorbs water more strongly than oak. Elegant beech with warm and soft energy refreshes the interior decoration of the room, and oak creates discreet luxury, gives nobility and aristocracy.
Beech wood is endowed with a lot of advantages: odorless, bends well, perfectly holds fasteners (nails and screws), is not prone to warping and cracking. With an average density, beech has high strength and is perfectly processed. Therefore, it is used to make:
- furniture and flooring;
- sliced veneer;
- dishes, cutting boards, baskets, barrels;
- musical instruments;
- raw materials foracetone, methyl alcohol;
- medicinal raw materials.
The disadvantage of beech wood is its strong absorption of moisture, therefore, to protect the products, they are varnished and various impregnating agents.
The similarity of beech and birch
Birch board is valued for its appearance. It is believed that this tree does not contain a kernel, so the wood consists only of sapwood and has a uniform yellow-white or pinkish tint. It is valued for its sinuous fibers that create a beautiful texture, which is why birch is used as a decorative material. The density values of beech and birch are very close to each other. The latter has an indicator of 650 kg/m3, which allows it to be used for making furniture. It also lends itself well to processing, but, again, high humidity should be taken into account.
Products that are on the street quickly become covered with mold and rot. In addition, the material is subject to shrinkage up to 8%. Birch plywood is especially valued. Home craftsmen make shelves, carved coasters and light furniture from it. Of considerable importance is the high thermal conductivity of wood and the release of a large amount of heat during combustion.
With very similar properties in density, hardness and wear resistance, birch, beech and oak are widely used in the furniture industry. For budget options, birch is suitable; for more expensive options, preference is given to beech or oak, which have almost the same strength and differ onlypattern.