There are over seventy species of Dipterocarpus growing in South East Asia – many different ones in each country. The species are all broadly quite similar and are marketed as mixtures available under a single name. The name Keruing is the best known in the United Kingdom and actually refers to timber imported from Indonesia, Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak; Gurjun is timber from Burma and India, Yang is from Thailand and Apitong is from the Philippines. The mixture in any consignment will bring about some variability but it is not normally important; Gurjun and Yang are each composed of a smaller number of species and are therefore the least variable.
The timbers vary in colour from pinkish-brown to dark brown and look rather characterless. Grain is straight or shallowly interlocked and the texture is moderately coarse and even. All of the species contain oleo-resins and many of them will exude it onto surfaces during drying or when exposed to heat or sunshine when in use, gums may also cause problems in machining. The weight is variable too but is generally within the range 720 to 800 kg/m3 when dried. All the species tend to be used in place of the more expensive Oak for heavy construction, decking, vehicle building and sleepers. Can also be used for plywood.
|Latin Name||Weight (kg/m3)||Colour||Texture||Grain|
|Dipterocarpus species||720 to 800 kg/m3||Pinkish-brown to Dark brown||Moderately coarse||Straight|
|Main Uses||Heavy construction, decking, vehicle building and sleepers|
|Length Range Between||2.1m to 5.7m|
|Width Range Between||20mm to 250mm|