Thursday, 16 July 2015 15:25

Would Sapele Work For You Instead of Mahogany?

Written by Jesper Bach

Everyone have heard of mahogany lumber, mostly from the old days when it was all Swietenia from South America. The true Swietenia is still available, but in very limited supply, and the cost continues to rise...

Sapele has emerged as the primary mahogany wood the last few years. Sapele is quickly becoming a very popular tropical hardwood.  Imported from Africa, this beautiful hardwood species is being used more frequently by craftsmen for various applications.sapele bundle

Sapele is a very versatile hardwood species and can be found being used in many different products such as fine furniture, high end cabinets, doors and windows, flooring, paneling and even musical instruments. As a matter of fact, sapele is regularly used to create acoustic or electric guitar bodies.

Sapele is available in flat sawn material that resembles a typical mahogany grain with a cathedral look to it. It is also available in quarter sawn or what is sometimes referred to as ribbon grain.  This is also highly sought after for its decorative look in many different products.

Figured sapele, which is the name those for boards that come from a tree that has a very distinct third dimension look to the grain pattern, are also available for those special projects that require something really unique.

Sapele is regularly found in thicknesses that range from 4/4” through 16/4” in random widths, 4/4” is often found in fixed widths like 6” or 8” as well.

Pricing for sapele varies much like other hardwood pricing. However, it is typically priced far below the Swietenia Mahogany and many times a little lower than African Mahogany.

The supply of sapele in the United States can vary significantly. Since it can take almost three to six months to arrive on our shores, careful consideration to volumes and inventory levels can be important.  It is important to work with a supplier that you can regularly depend on to provide you the sapele you need when and where you need it.

Let us know if we can help you with your sapele.  Contact your Baillie Lumber sales representative today for more information.

Jesper Bach
Baillie Lumber




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