The heartwood of Padouk (pronounced pu-douk’) is a vivid red-orange often with lighter orange and orange-brown streaks when freshly cut. It will darken over time to a bright red, red-pink, or dark red-orange. Grain is usually straight but can be interlocked, fine to medium texture and a natural sheen.
|Pterocarpus soyauxii |
Central & West Africa – Cameroon, Zaire, Angola, Congo, New Guinea
Camwood, Barwood, Corail, African Coralwood, Muenge, Mbe, Mbil, Mututi, Ngula, Vermillion, and Yomo.
1725 – 34% harder than Northern Red Oak
Above Average – Change Coefficient .00180
African Padouk is reported to be relatively secure within its natural habitat in most areas including the Congo, but it is officially classified as vulnerable in Cameroon.
The tree is reported to reach heights of 100 to 130 feet, with trunk diameters that are usually 24 to 48 inches, but may sometimes reach 60 inches. Boles are often straight and cylindrical, and are clear of branches to about 70 feet.
The heartwood of Padouk is a vivid reddish orange when it is freshly cut. The wood will darken to a deep reddish or purple brown over time. The sapwood is cream-colored. The grain is straight to interlocked and the texture is course. Padouk is very uniform in color with slight variations within grades.
African Padauk undergoes an extreme degree of color change with pronounced darkening from the vivid orange color when freshly milled to a dark red almost black color when fully aged/oxidized. Oil finishes hasten this process and allow the full color change to occur while water based finishes inhibit the full color range.
Due to its high strength, durability and outstanding stability, this wood is ideal for high-class joinery, flooring, furniture and cabinetmaking. Also for fancy turning, carving, tool and knife handles, paddles and oars, and decorative veneers.
Hard, heavy, and strong with exceptional decay resistance and dimensional stability. Not suitable for steam bending.
Works well with hand and machine tools. Glues easily and holds nails and screws well. Finishes to a beautiful sheen without the need for stain.