Balek Angin

INTRODUCTION

The common Malaysian name for the timber of Mallotus spp. (Euphorbiaceae). Vernacular names applied include balek angin bopeng (Peninsular Malaysia), enserai (Sarawak), mallotus (Sabah) with various epithets, perupok (Peninsular Malaysia), selung apid (Sabah), serapoh (Peninsular Malaysia), singin (Sarawak) and ulas (Sabah). Major species include M. leucodermis, M. miquelianus, M. muticus and M. wrayi. The sapwood is not differentiated from the heartwood, which is straw-coloured.

Also known as Kamala (Australia); Raini (India); Balek angin, Biraki, Ki mejong, Kolimama poete, Morotokoelo, Ota mewoeloe, Tofa, Towoela and Tunbuwat (Indonesia); Banato, Hinlaumo and Tula tula(Philippines); and Vang (Vietnam).


DENSITY

The timber is soft to moderately hard and light to heavy with a density of 365-815 kg/m3 air dry.


NATURAL DURABILITY

The timber is non-durable.


PRESERVATIVE TREATMENT

It is extremely easy to treat.


TEXTURE

Texture is slightly coarse and even, with straight grain.


STRENGTH PROPERTIES

The timber falls into Strength Group C (Burgess, 1958) or SG5 (MS 544: Part 2:2001).


MACHINING PROPERTIES

It is slightly difficult to difficult to resaw and difficult to cross-cut. Planing is easy to moderately easy and the planed surface is moderately smooth.


AIR DRYING

The timber seasons fairly rapidly, with moderate splitting, insect and fungal attacks and slight cupping, bowing, end-checking as the main defects. 13 mm thick boards take 2 months to air dry, while 38 mm thick boards take 3 months.


SHRINKAGE

Shrinkage is high to very high, with radial shrinkage averaging 3.2% and tangential shrinkage averaging 6.7%.


USES

The timber is suitable for wall panelling, mouldings, plywood, solid door, flooring, furniture and fittings, non-impact tool handles, wooden sandals as well as packing boxes and crates. 


REFERENCES

  1. Burgess, H. J. 1958. Strength Grouping of Malaysian Timbers. Malayan Forest Service Trade Leaflet No.25. The Malaysian Timber Industry Board and Forest Research Institute Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur. 15 pp.
  2. MS 544: Part 2: 2001: Code Of Practice For Structural Use Of Timber. Permissible Stress Design of Solid Timber.
  3. Wong, T. M. 1982. A Dictionary of Malaysian Timbers. Revised by Lim, S. C. & Chung, R. C. K. Malayan Forest Record No. 30. Forest Research Institute Malaysia Kuala Lumpur. 201 pp.