Opepe

Latin name: Nauclea diderrichii

 

Also known as: kusia (Ghana), badi (Ivory Coast), bilinga (Gabon)


Wood Type:

Hardwood

Durability:

Very durable

Treatability:

Moderately easy

Moisture Movement:

Small

Density (mean, Kg/m³):

750

Texture:

Coarse

Availability:

Variable availability at specialist or to order

Price:

Medium

Use(s):

Heavy structural use, Joinery - Exterior, Flooring, Decking

Colour(s):

Pink/pale red, Yellow brown

Notes on terms used navigation-arrow

Environmental

Listed in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species as as VU – Vunerable: at risk of extinction. Not listed in CITES. Believed available from well-managed sources. Check certification status with suppliers.

 

Distribution

This tree has a wide distribution in the equatorial forests of Equatorial Guinea, Liberia, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Nigeria and the Cameroons.

 

The tree

A large, well shaped tree, from 35m to 48m tall and 1.0m to 2.0m in diameter at breast height, The trunk is generally without buttresses, although old trees often have a basal swelling that extends not more than 1.0m above the ground. The bole is slender, cylindrical, and free of branches for 20m to 30m.

 

The timber

The heartwood is a distinctive uniform golden-yellow or orange-brown colour, clearly differentiated from the pinkish yellow sapwood which is usually about 50mm wide. The texture is coarse and the grain frequently interlocked, producing a striped or roll figure on quarter-sawn surfaces. Lustrous, very hard and moderately heavy, it weighs about 750 kg/m³ when dried.

 

Drying

Needs careful drying, or checks and splits may develop. Hair-shakes often occur during drying, but warping generally is not serious. Especially in large sizes opepe dries very slowly, and it is advisable to use thin stickers when piling.

 

Strength

An exceptionally strong timber, superior to English oak in all strength categories except resistance to shock loads or splitting.

 

Working qualities

Medium - The timber works with moderate ease in most hand and machine operations and has a reasonably small dulling effect on tool edges. Quarter-sawn material tends to pick up in planing unless a cutting angle of about 10° is employed. An excellent finish can be obtained; when polishing, the grain needs considerable filling, but a high polish is obtainable. The timber tends to split on nailing.

Suppliers

Brooks Bros (UK) Limitednavigation-arrow

Maldon

Capricorn Eco Timbernavigation-arrow

Stafford

Cranwood Industriesnavigation-arrow

Warrenpoint

E O Burton & Co Limitednavigation-arrow

Brentwood

Enfield Speciality Doorsnavigation-arrow

Enfield

Gilmour & Aitkennavigation-arrow

Alexandria

Gripdecknavigation-arrow

Colchester

International Timbernavigation-arrow

Manchester

James Latham plcnavigation-arrow

Hemel Hempstead

Morgan Timbernavigation-arrow

Rochester

NHG Timber Limitednavigation-arrow

Croydon

Timber Focusnavigation-arrow

Manchester

Vincent Timber Ltdnavigation-arrow

Birmingham

W. L. West & Sons Ltdnavigation-arrow

Petworth

Woodscape Ltdnavigation-arrow

Blackburn

Suppliers

Woodscape Ltdnavigation-arrow

Blackburn

W. L. West & Sons Ltdnavigation-arrow

Petworth

Vincent Timber Ltdnavigation-arrow

Birmingham

Timber Focusnavigation-arrow

Manchester

NHG Timber Limitednavigation-arrow

Croydon

Morgan Timbernavigation-arrow

Rochester

James Latham plcnavigation-arrow

Hemel Hempstead

International Timbernavigation-arrow

Manchester

Gripdecknavigation-arrow

Colchester

Gilmour & Aitkennavigation-arrow

Alexandria

Enfield Speciality Doorsnavigation-arrow

Enfield

E O Burton & Co Limitednavigation-arrow

Brentwood

Cranwood Industriesnavigation-arrow

Warrenpoint

Capricorn Eco Timbernavigation-arrow

Stafford

Brooks Bros (UK) Limitednavigation-arrow

Maldon