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Types of wood - a brief overview

A portrait of the types of wood we use. Everything about properties such as wood hardness, wood grain, wood colour and its use.

No other plant species is as important to mankind as the tree. Trees are highly complex biosystems that supply us with the oxygen we need to breathe, that provide us with shade in which we can rest, that bear nuts and fruit that we eat. They are a habitat for insects and birds, they produce wood that we use as building material and fuel. The interaction between trees and people is as old as mankind itself.


There are different durability classes for wood. They indicate how resistant a wood is to fungi and wood-destroying insects. The different types of wood are categorised into a corresponding class according to the DIN standards. For example, exotic wood species such as Bangkirai are categorised particularly highly. Among the domestic wood species, robinia, oak and Douglas fir are the most resistant. Spruce and fir, for example, are categorised lower here, which is why they are also among the less expensive types of wood. 

The classification is based on durability classes. Five classes are defined, from very durable (class 1) to durable (class 2) to non-durable (class 5):

Class 1: very durable: acacia, bilinga, iroko maobi, macaranduba, robinia, teak (teak from plantations often only reaches class 3),
Class 2: durable: sweet chestnut, oak, bongossi, merbau, wenge, bankirai
Class 3: moderately durable: Kasai, Bintangor, Douglas fir, larch, heavy pine timbers
Class 4: not very durable: spruce, fir, elm
Class 5: not durable: lime, beech, birch, ash 

Wood used outdoors must be particularly weather-resistant. For this reason, durable class 1 and 2 woods are used.


In our latitudes, native woods are all woods that originate from European regions.The versatility is impressive and there is a suitable wood with the right properties for almost every area of use. There are many good reasons why local woods should be used. 

Of the hard domestic woods for furniture construction, we mainly use oak, walnut and cherry