USDA Forest Service
Forest Products Laboratory
One Gifford Pinchot Drive
Madison, WI 53705-2398
(608) 231-9200


Wood Technical Fact Sheet


 Prioria copaifera


Family: Leguminosae

Other Common Names: Amansamujer, Copachu (Colombia), Camibar (Costa Rica), Muramo, Curucai (Venezuela).

Distribution: Lowland areas from Nicaragua to Colombia, often in nearly pure stands.

The Tree: Heights are usually 75 to 100 ft with clear boles of 40 to 50 ft; commonly range from 18 to 40 in. in diameter with occasional specimens reaching 48 to 60 in.

The Wood:

General Characteristics: Heartwood medium to light brown, often attractively streaked; sharply demarcated from the thick sapwood which is pinkish to white when fresh becoming dingy on the surface because of oily exudations. Texture rather fine and uniform; straight grained; superficially dull but with golden luster beneath; without distinctive odor or taste.

Weight: Basic specific gravity (ovendry weight/green volume) 0.40; air-dry density 30 pcf.

Mechanical Properties: (2-in. standard)

Moisture content Bending strength Modulus of elasticity Maximum crushing strength

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

Green (73) 5,920 940 2,460

12% 8,560 1,110 4,290

12% (44) 8,900 1,180 NA

Janka side hardness 440 lb for green material and 630 lb at 12% moisture content. Forest Products Laboratory toughness average for green and dry material is 88 in.-lb. (5/8-in. specimen).

Drying and Shrinkage: Wood dries rapidly with no checking and only slight warping. Collapse is reported to occur sometimes in the darker streaks in the heartwood, particularly during kiln-drying. Kiln schedule T3-C2 is suggested for 4/4 stock and T3-C1 for 8/4. Control of gum exudates by use of high kiln temperatures is reported. Shrinkage green to ovendry: radial 2.4%; tangential 5.3%; volumetric 8.9%.

Working Properties: Tends to be woolly when sawed green; wood machines well in all operations when dry, mostly with smooth surfaces, sometimes with a slight tendency fuzziness. Easy to glue. Requires care in finishing because of gum content. Fair to good in steam-bending quality.

Durability: Generally rated as nondurable, particularly in resistance to white rot.

Preservation: The wood is reported to be easy to preserve.

Uses: Interior trim, furniture and cabinet work, joinery, veneer and plywood, millwork; used to prepare resin-stabilized veneer for pattern stock.

Additional Reading: (37), (44), (56), (73)