Tetebu

INTRODUCTION

The common Malaysian name for the timber of Mastixia spp. (Cornaceae). The ASEAN Standard Name for the timber, which is of Indonesian origin, is KAYU KUNDUR. Vernacular names applied are bantis (Sabah), itan beruang (Sarawak), tebu-tebu (Peninsular Malaysia) and tetebu (Peninsular Malaysia), in obvious reference to the strong sugar-cane smell of the cut bark. Major species include M. pentandra and M. trichotoma. The sapwood is white to light yellow and is not well defined from the heartwood, which is yellow with a greenish tinge.

Also known as Gulle and Mastixia (India); Kayu Kundur (Indonesia); Apanit (Philippines); and Diyataliya (Sri Lanka).


DENSITY

The timber is moderately soft and is light to moderately heavy with a density of 560-770 kg/m3 air dry.


NATURAL DURABILITY

It has not been tested for its durability but is expected to be non-durable under exposed conditions.


PRESERVATIVE TREATMENT

It is very easily treated with preservatives.


TEXTURE

Texture is fine and even with straight to shallowly interlocked grain.


STRENGTH PROPERTIES

The timber falls into Strength Group C (Burgess, 1958) or SG 5 (MS 544:Part 2:2001).


MACHINING PROPERTIES

It is easy to saw and work and produces a smooth surface.


AIR DRYING

The timber seasons slowly and is prone to staining. 25 mm thick boards take 5 months to air dry.


SHRINKAGE

Shrinkage is very high, especially in the tangential direction. Radial shrinkage averages 2% while tangential shrinkage averages 5.2%.


USES

The timber has not been used in any great extent in the country. Due to its high shrinkage, the timber may not be suitable for a large number of constructional uses. Possible usage include packing boxes and crates, pallets, shuttering and perhaps particleboard manufacture.


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 the 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 Records No. 30. Forest Research Institute Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur. 201 pp.