Sequoia sempervirens

 

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Family: Taxodiaceae

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Redwood

 

 

 

The genus Sequoia is represented by one species (S. sempervirens). A related tree, the giant sequoia (Sequoiadenrdon giganteum) is also called redwood, big tree or giant redwood. The word sequoia was selected to honor Sequoyah (also spelled Sequoia), or George Guess (1770?-1843), Native American inventor of the Cherokee alphabet. The name was unexplained by its author, an Austrian linguist and botanist. The name sempervirens means evergreen.

Other Common Names: Amerikansk sekvoja, California cedar, California redwood, Californische redwood, coast redwood, corla, giant-of-the-forest, Humboldt redwood, ledwood, Mexican cherry, palo colorado, pin rouge d'ambrique, pin rouge d'Amerique, pino rosso d'america, redwood, sequoia, sequoia de California, sequoia roja, sequoia rossa, sequoia toujours vert, sequoie, vavona, vavona burr.

Distribution: Redwood is native to the Pacific Coast region from extreme southwestern Oregon (Curry County) south to central California (Monterey County).

The Tree: Redwood trees reach heights of 200 to 300 feet, with diameters of 6 to 12 feet. The record is 376 feet tall, with a 20 foot diameter and an age of 2,200 years, and represents the world’s tallest tree.

General Wood Characteristics: The sapwood of is white, while the heartwood is a dark reddish brown. The heartwood has no characteristic odor or taste. It has exceptionally straight grain, high dimensional stability and is resistant to warping. It is moderately strong in bending, strong in endwise compression, stiff, moderately low in shock resistance and holds paint well.

Weight

 

 

Weight

Moisture content

Specific gravity

lb/ft3

 

Old Growth

 

 

 

Green

0.38a

50b

 

12%

0.40a

28b

 

Ovendry

0.42b

NA

 

Second Growth

 

 

 

Green

0.34a

42c

 

12%

0.35a

24c

 

Ovendry

0.36c

NA

 

??aReference (15).

??bReference (14).

??cReference (9).

 

Mechanical Propertiesa?

Property

Green

Dry

Old Growth

 

 

 

 

MOE

1.18 ¥ 106 lbf/in2

 

1.34 ¥ 106 lbf/in2

 

MOR

7.50 ¥ 103 lbf/in2

 

10.00 ¥ 103 lbf/in2

 

C| |

4.20 ¥ 103 lbf/in2

 

6.15 ¥ 103 lbf/in2

 

C^

0.42 ¥ 103 lbf/in2

 

0.70 ¥ 103 lbf/in2

 

WML

7.4 in-lbf/in3

 

6.9 in-lbf/in3

 

Hardness

410 lbf

 

480 lbf

 

Shear| |

0.80 ¥ 103 lbf/in2

 

0.94 ¥ 103 lbf/in2

 

Second Growth

 

 

 

 

MOE

0.96 ¥ 106 lbf/in2

 

1.10 ¥ 106 lbf/in2

 

MOR

5.90 ¥ 103 lbf/in2

 

7.90 ¥ 103 lbf/in2

 

C| |

3.11 ¥ 103 lbf/in2

 

5.22 ¥ 103 lbf/in2

 

C^

0.27 ¥ 103 lbf/in2

 

0.52 ¥ 103 lbf/in2

 

WML

5.7 in-lbf/in3

 

5.2 in-lbf/in3

 

Hardness

350 lbf

 

420 lbf

 

Shear| |

0.89 ¥ 103 lbf/in2

 

1.11 ¥ 103 lbf/in2

 

 

 

Drying and shrinkage

 

Percentage of shrinkage

(green to final moisture content)

Type of shrinkage

0%MCa

6%MCb

20%MCb

Old Growth

 

 

 

Tangential

4.4

3.5

1.5

Radial

2.6

2.1

0.9

Volumetric

6.8

5.4

2.3

Second Growth

 

 

 

Tangential

4.9

NA

NA

Radial

2.2

NA

NA

Volumetric

7.0

NA

NA

??aReference (15).?

??bReference (14).

 

 

Kiln Drying Schedulesa

Conventional Temperatures/Moisture Content-Controlled Schedulesa

Condition

4/4, 5/4

stock

6/4 stock

8/4

stock

10/4

stock

12/4

stock

British Schedule

4/4 stock

Light

T5-D6

NA

T5-D4

T5-C4

T5-C3

K

Heavy

T4-F5

T3-F5

T3-F4

NA

NA

NA

?aReference (2&13).

 

?Conventional Temperatures/Time-Controlled Schedulesa

?

Lower Grades

Upper grades

Condition

4/4, 5/4 stock

6/4 stock

8/4 stock

4/4, 5/4 stock

6/4 stock

8/4 stock

12/4, 16/4 stock

Light

289

288

b

289

288

b

NA

Medium & Heavy

c

c

c

c

c

c

NA

?aReferences (2&13).

?bAir dry to 20% MC, then dry using table 286 (13).

?c Air dry to 20% MC, then dry using table 289. Prone to collapse(13).

Working Properties: Redwood works easily with both hand and machine tools, with little dulling effect on tools. It planes well, provided the cutters are sharp and it splinters easily when working on the end grain. It holds nails well, and paints and finishes satisfactorily. It also stains well, but glues best with alkaline adhesives.

Durability: Redwood is rated as resistant to very resistant to heartwood decay.

Preservation: Redwood is moderately resistant to preservative treatments.

Uses: High value building construction, heavy beams, bridge timbers, planks, siding, sash, doors, veneer, furniture, cooling equipment, plywood, pulping, particle board, shakes, shingles, grape stakes, posts and novelties (from burl wood).

Toxicity: Working with redwood may cause allergic reactions (4,10&16).

 

Additional Reading and References Cited (in parentheses)

1. Betts, H. S. Redwood (Sequoia sempervirens). Washington, DC, USA.: USDA Forest Service, USGPO, O-940471; 1945.

2. Boone, R. S.; Kozlik, C. J.; Bois, P. J., and Wengert, E. M. Dry kiln schedules for commercial woods - temperate and tropical. Madison, WI: USDA Forest Service, FPL-GTR-57; 1988.

3. Dallimore, W.; Jackson, A. B., and Harrison, S. G. A handbook of Coniferae and Ginkgoaceae. London, UK: Edward Arnold Ltd.; 1966.

4. Hausen, B. M. Woods injurious to human health. A manual. New York, NY: Walter de Gruyter; 1981.

5. Henderson, F. Y. A handbook of softwoods. London: HMSO; 1977.

6. Lindquist, J. L. Redwood, an American wood. Washington, DC, USA.: USDA Forest Service, FS-262.; 1974.

7. Little, jr. E. L. Checklist of United States trees (native and naturalized). Washington, DC: USGPO, USDA Forest Service, Ag. Handbook No. 541; 1979.

8. Luxford, R. F. and Markwardt, L. J. The strength and related properties of redwood. Washington, DC, USA.: USDA Forest Service, Technical Bulletin No. 305; 1932.

9. Markwardt, L. J. and Wilson, T. R. C. Strength and related properties of woods grown in the United States. Washington, DC: USGPO, USDA Forest Service, Tech. Bull. No. 479; 1935.

10. Mitchell, J. and Rook, A. Botanical dermatology: plants and plant products injurious to the skin. Vancouver, BC: Greenglass Ltd.; 1979.

11. Olson, Jr. D. F.; Roy, D. F., and Walters, G. A. Sequoia sempervirens (D. Don) Endl. in: Burns, R. M. and Honkala, B. H., tech. coords. Silvics of North America. Volume 1, Conifers. Washington, DC: USDA Forest Service; 1990; pp. 541-551.

12. Show, S. B. and Stuart, R. Y. Timber growing and logging practice in the coast redwood region of California. Washington, DC, USA: USDA Forest Service, Technical Bulletin No. 283; 1932.

13. Simpson, W. T. Dry kiln operator's manual. Madison, WI: USDA Forest Service, FPL Ag. Handbook No. 188; 1991.

14. Summitt, R. and Sliker, A. CRC handbook of materials science. Vol. 4. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, Inc.; 1980.

15. USDA. Wood handbook: wood as an engineering material. Madison, WI: USDA Forest Service, FPL Ag. Handbook No. 72; 1974.

16. Woods, B. and Calnan, C. D. Toxic woods. British Journal of Dermatology. 1976; 95(13):1-97.