The Standard Malaysian Name for the timber of Castanopsis spp. (Fagaceae). Vernacular names applied include berangan (Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak) with various epithets, kogopon (Sabah), maruwit (Sarawak) and various other localised names too numerous to be listed here. Major species include C. borneensis, C. buruana, C. clemensii, C.curtisii, C. endertii, C. evansii, C. foxworthyi, C. fulva, C. hypophoenicea, C. inermis, C. javanica, C. malaccensis, C.microphylla, C. motleyana, C. oviformis, C. paucispina, C. psilophylla, C. rhamnifolia and C. schefferiana. The sapwood is light brown, often with a greenish tinge and sharply defined from the heartwood, which is dark brown or dark red-brown.

Also know as Indian chestnut (India); Saninten (Indonesia); Fan, Ko and Ko deng (Laos); Katia (Mynmar); New Guinea oak (Papua New Guinea); Gasa and Philippines chestnut (Philippines); Khoduiy, Kholaem, Ko and Ko nam (Thailand); and Ca-oi (Vietnam).


The timber is moderately hard and moderately heavy to heavy. It has been classified under Light Hardwood with a density of 610-980 kg/m3 air dry.


Standard graveyard tests on C. malaccensis revealed that the timber has an average life span of 2.6 years (Tam, 1983). This thus placed the timber in the borderline between moderately and non-durable. Previous records, however, show that berangan is generally not durable, being susceptible to fungal, powder post and ambrosia beetle attacks (Foxworthy, 1930; Desch, 1957).


The timber is very difficult to treat with preservatives.


The texture is coarse and uneven due to the irregular distribution of the vessels. Grain is fairly straight but sometimes interlocked.


The timber falls into Strength Group B (Burgess, 1958) or SG 4 (MS 544:Part 2:2001).

Strength Properties of Berangan

Test Condition

Modulus of Elasticity (MPa)

Modulus of Rupture (MPa)

Compression parallel to grain (MPa)

Compression perpendicular to grain (MPa)

Shear Strength (MPa)








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


The timber seasons fairly slowly without any defects, except for some staining. 25 mm thick boards take 5 months to air dry.


Shrinkage is very high, with radial shrinkage averaging 2.3% and tangential shrinkage averaging 4.5%.


Berangan logs are generally free from defects. However, they are very susceptible to termite attacks.


The timber is suitable for medium to heavy construction under cover, furniture, packing boxes and crates, pallets (expendable type), door and window frames and sills, staircase (carriage and newel), tool handles (impact), railway sleepers, joinery, cabinet-making and plywood.


  1. Burgess, H.J. 1958. Strength Grouping of Malaysian Timbers. Malayan Forest Service Trade Leaflet No. 25. The Malaysian Timber Industry Board and Forest Reserach Institute Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur. 15 pp.  
  2. Desch, H.E. 1941. Manual of Malayan Timbers. Vol. 1. Mal. For. Rec. No. 15.
  3. Foxworthy, F.W. 1930. Durability of Malayan Timbers. Mal. For. Rec. No. 8.
  4. Menon, P.K.B. 1986. Uses of Some Malaysian Timbers. Revised by Lim, S.C. Timber Trade Leaflet No. 31. The Malaysian Timber Industry Board and Forest Research Institute Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur. 48 pp.
  5. MS 544:Part 2:2001. Code of Practice for the Structural Use of Timber: Permissible Stress Design of Solid Timber.
  6. Sim, H.C., 1984. Malaysian Timbers - Berangan. Timber Trade Leaflet No. 86. The Malaysian Timber Industry Board and Forest Research Institute Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur. 5 pp.
  7. Tam. M.K. 1983. Unpublished reports, FRI, Kepong.
  8. 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.