Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Shakes in timber

Not a normal topic but one that is mentioned in some designers timber lists,such as

Clean wood,free of shakes,splits or other faults,Meranti,Mahogany or similar,etc etc.

Clean wood and splits is easy to understand but how do we identify shakes?

The tell tale zig zag line of a shake,this has been re asembled,so in practice the line will be tighter.The wood is Meranti,shakes can not be seen in a clean sawn plank,only when final machine work has taken place can you detect the fault.

Once detected,I placed this 44 x 22mm timber in a vice,gave it a firm but not hard pull and it broke with ease.

Click on the picture for more detail,this shake goes clean through the wood,not always the case but most often.This is not a problem once detected,as the wood can be scarphed and glued back together.A scarph ratio of 1 : 7 is an accepted norm.

Not all timber species suffer from shakes,which is thought to be caused by lightening?
teak,oak,beech and poplar do not normally show such a defect.We moved our timber selection to american poplar (cotton wood) for this reason.
All timber sold by CKD Boats cc is inspected for such defects,we reject those timbers when found.

R McB 

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