Western Red Cedar
Western Red Cedar has long been the most prized softwood from the forests of the Pacific Northwest. It is lightweight, strong, stable, rot and insect resistant, fine textured and beautiful. Western Red Cedar’s many uses include outdoor furniture, trim, siding, shakes and shingles, decking, pergolas and other landscape structures as well as interior paneling and trim.
Western Red Cedar Properties
Western Red Cedar is a commercially important lumber, used in a number of applications ranging from rough-sawn lumber for use in home construction to clear quartersawn material for classical guitar soundboards.
- Sustainability: This wood species is not listed in the CITES Appendices, and is reported by the IUCN as being a species of least concern.
- Workability: Western Red Cedar is easy to work with both hand or machine tools, though it dents and scratches very easily due to its softness, and can sand unevenly due to the difference in density between the earlywood and latewood zones. Glues and finishes well. Iron-based fasteners can stain and discolor the wood, especially in the presence of moisture.
- Color/appearance: Heartwood reddish to pinkish brown, often with random streaks and bands of darker red/brown areas. Narrow sapwood is pale yellowish white, and isn’t always sharply demarcated from the heartwood.
- Common Name(s):
Western Red Cedar
- Scientific Name:
- Distribution: Western Red Cedar can be found in Pacific Northwest United States/Canada
- Tree Size: 165-200 ft (50-60 m) tall, 7-13 ft (2-4 m) trunk diameter
- Average Dried Weight: 23 lbs/ft3 (370 kg/m3)
- Specific Gravity (Basic, 12% MC): .31, .37
- Janka Hardness: 350 lbf (1,560 N)
- Modulus of Rupture: 7,500 lbf/in2 (51.7 MPa)
- Elastic Modulus: 1,110,000 lbf/in2 (7.66 GPa)
- Crushing Strength: 4,560 lbf/in2 (31.4 MPa)
- Shrinkage: Radial: 2.4%, Tangential: 5.0%, Volumetric: 6.8%, T/R Ratio: 2.1
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