Balanocarpus spp.
Family: Dipterocarpaceae
Chengal

Penak

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Other Common Names: Takien-chan (Thailand), Kong, Karakong (India), Mindanao Narek, Narek (Philippines).

 

Distribution: B. heimii is widely distributed in the Malay Peninsula including Thailand south of Pattani.  Other species reported in India and the Philippines.

 

The Tree: Stem diameters over 3 ft are common; boles mostly well-shaped and clear for 100 ft or more.  A very large specimen with a diameter of 13 ft is reported.

 

The Wood:

General Characteristics: Heartwood light yellow brown with a distinct green tinge when fresh, changing on exposure to a dark brown or dark purple brown; sharply demarcated from the pale yellow sapwood.  Luster moderate; grain usually only shallowly interlocked; texture fine and even; odor and taste not distinctive.

 

Weight: Basic specific gravity (ovendry weight/green volume) 0.76; air-dry density 58 pcf.

 

Mechanical Properties: (2-in.  standard)

 

Moisture content   Bending strength   Modulus of elasticity   Maximum crushing strength

            (%)                  (Psi)                            (1,000 psi)                   (Psi)

Green (10)                   17,680                         2,630                           10,000

16%                             21,560                         2,840                           10,900

 

Janka side hardness 2,085 lb for green material and 2,130 lb for dry.

 

Drying and Shrinkage: The wood is slow drying and prone to surface checking. Shrinkage is reported to be low.  Kiln schedule T2-C2 is suggested for 4/4 stock. Air-drying prior to kiln-drying is recommended.

 

Working Properties: Easy to work with both hand and machine tools but there is some tendency for saws to gum up; planes to a smooth surface and takes a very good polish.

 

Durability: Heartwood is very resistant to insect and fungal attack; but is reported as vulnerable to marine borers.

 

Preservation: Heartwood is reported as not treatable.

 

Uses: Heavy construction, railroad crossties, boatbuilding, utility poles, industrial flooring, vats, casks, and tanks.

 

Additional Reading:: (10), (11), (63)

 

10.   Desch, H. E. 1941.  Dipterocarp timbers of the Malay Peninsula.  Malayan Forest

Records No.14.

11.   Desch, H. E. 1941-54.  Manual of Malayan timbers.  Malayan Forest Records No.

15.2 vol.

63.  Thomas, A. V. 1955.  Malayan timbers.  . . Chengal.  Malayan Forester 18:103-105.

 

 

From: Chudnoff, Martin. 1984. Tropical Timbers of the World. USDA Forest Service. Ag. Handbook No. 607.