Wood Species In Detail – European Beech

At Osborne Wood Products, we supply the cabinet and furniture trade with the highest quality decorative wood components. Naturally, we work hard to source the highest quality wood possible. In an effort to better help our hobbyist and DIY customers make the right choice in which wood types to use in their projects, we are introducing a new blog series in which we go into detail discussing our various wood types and answering any common questions our customers may have.

A beech tree in Italy

Versatility is the one word most often used when describing the uses for European beech. This wood has been a staple lumber for the European market and recently has found growing popularity in the American market as well. European beech is commonly used in a wide variety of products. Some of these include: furniture, cabinetry, interior furnishings, carvings, stairs, flooring, veneer, plywood, pianos, tools, and toys.

The versatility of the wood is shown in the varied uses of the lumber and in how easily the lumber can be worked. It machines, glues, and finishes well. European beech works smoothly, both with hand tools and with machines. The wood easily accepts either paint or stain for finishing.

European beech is a hardwood found throughout most of Europe. It has a wide range extending west to Portugal, east to Turkey, north to Sweden, and south to Sicily. The trees are generally large reaching around 80-130 feet in height and 3-5 feet in diameter.

This variety of beech takes about 30 years to reach full maturity and has an average lifespan of 200 years. However, when used for lumber most trees are harvested before they reach 80 years of age. Since the tree species is so widespread throughout Europe, there are a large number of areas where European beech can be harvested.

While harvesting can vary, many of these areas make an effort to keep a balance between the number of trees harvested and the number of trees growing to take their place.

In color, European beech is generally a pale cream with dark specks. The lumber is often steamed, which may add a red or brown hue to the wood. It has a short, fine grain with an even texture. The wood itself is a good hardwood with a hardness of 1440, which falls between red oak and hard maple on the Janka Hardness Scale.

European beech is considered a perishable wood. It is only recommended for indoor use as it is susceptible to rot and insect attack.

All of our wood types are sorted into a Traditional, Premium, or Specialty selection. If available as an option, you can find beech under our Premium selection.

Additionally, if you would like a part made in beech, you can contact us for a custom quote by filling out our online form, emailing, or calling 800-849-8876 and speaking with a representative today.

Check out the links below to read more in-depth about all the other wood types we offer:

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