Janka Scale

Janka Hardness Scale: A Guide to Evaluating Wood Durability

The Janka hardness test is a standard test used to determine the hardness of wood. It measures the force required to embed a small steel ball into the wood to half its diameter. This measurement indicates the wood’s resistance to denting and wear, which is essential in determining its suitability for various applications.

For example, if a species of wood has a high rating on the Janka scale, it is considered hard and durable, making it ideal for flooring, furniture, and decking. On the other hand, if a species of wood has a low rating on the Janka scale, it is considered to be a soft and relatively weak wood, which may not be suitable for applications that require strength and durability.

It is important to note that the Janka hardness test only measures one aspect of a wood’s properties and does not consider other important factors such as stability, workability, and appearance. As such, it is recommended to use the Janka scale in combination with other tests and evaluations when making decisions about the suitability of wood for different applications.

Overall, the Janka hardness scale is a valuable tool for determining the hardness and durability of various types of wood and is widely used by lumber suppliers, builders, and manufacturers.

Species Force (pounds-force) Force (newtons)
Australian Buloke 5,060 lbf 22,500 N
Schinopsis brasiliensis, Quebracho, Barauna, Chamacoco 4,800 lbf 21,000 N
Schinopsis balansae, Quebracho Colorado, Red Quebracho 4,570 lbf 20,300 N
Lignum vitae, Guayacan, Pockholz 4,500 lbf 20,000 N
Piptadenia Macrocarpa, Curupay, Angico Preto, Brazilian Tiger Mahogany 3,840 lbf 17,100 N
Snakewood, Letterhout, Piratinera Guinensis 3,800 lbf 17,000 N
Brazilian Olivewood 3,700 lbf 16,000 N
Brazilian Ebony 3,700 lbf 16,000 N
Ipê, Brazilian Walnut, Handroanthus lapacho 3,684 lbf 16,390 N
African Pearwood, Moabi 3,680 lbf 16,400 N
Grey Ironbark 3,664 lbf 16,300 N
Bolivian Cherry 3,650 lbf 16,200 N
Lapacho 3,640 lbf 16,200 N
Sucupira, Brazilian Chestnut, Tiete Chestnut 3,417 lbf 15,200 N
Kingwood 3,340 lbf 14,900 N
Dipteryx, Cumaru, Brazilian Teak 3,330 lbf 14,800 N
Ironwood 3,260 lbf 14,500 N
Ebony 3,220 lbf 14,300 N
Massaranduba, Brazilian Redwood, Paraju 3,190 lbf 14,200 N
Yvyraro 3,040 lbf 13,500 N
Strand Woven Bamboo 3,000 lbf 13,000 N
Cocobolo 2,960 lbf 13,200 N
Bloodwood (Brosimum rubescens) 2,900 lbf 13,000 N
Boxwood 2,840 lbf 12,600 N
Red Mahogany, Turpentine 2,697 lbf 12,000 N
Live Oak 2,680 lbf 11,900 N
Southern Chestnut 2,670 lbf 11,900 N
Spotted Gum 2,473 lbf 11,000 N
Brazilian Cherry, Jatoba 2,350 lbf 10,500 N
Mesquite 2,345 lbf 10,430 N
Golden Teak 2,330 lbf 10,400 N
Guatambú, Kyrandy, Balfourodendron riedelianum 2,240 lbf 10,000 N
Santos Mahogany, Bocote, Cabreuva, Honduran Rosewood 2,200 lbf 9,800 N
Pradoo 2,170 lbf 9,700 N