Common Name(s): Bulletwood, Massaranduba
Scientific Name: Manilkara bidentata
Distribution: Caribbean, Central and South America
Tree Size: 100-150 ft (30-46 m) tall, 2-4 ft (.6-1.2 m) trunk diameter
Average Dried Weight: 67 lbs/ft3 (1,080 kg/m3)
Specific Gravity (Basic, 12% MC): .85, 1.08
Janka Hardness: 3,130 lbf (13,920 N)
Modulus of Rupture: 27,870 lbf/in2 (192.2 MPa)
Elastic Modulus: 3,344,000 lbf/in2 (23.06 GPa)
Crushing Strength: 12,930 lbf/in2 (89.2 MPa)
Shrinkage: Radial: 6.7%, Tangential: 9.4%, Volumetric: 16.8%, T/R Ratio: 1.4
Color/Appearance: Heartwood is a medium to dark reddish brown. Color tends to darken with age. Pale yellow sapwood is clearly differentiated from the heartwood, though not always sharply demarcated.
Grain/Texture: Grain straight to interlocked or wavy. Fine uniform texture with low natural luster.
Endgrain: Diffuse-porous; radial multiples of 2-5 common; medium to large pores, few; tyloses and mineral deposits common; parenchyma diffuse-in-aggregates, reticulate; narrow rays, spacing fairly close.
Rot Resistance: Rated as very durable, with good resistance to most insect attack. Susceptible to marine borers.
Workability: Despite its high density, Bulletwood generally produces good results with both hand and machine tools, though it does exhibit an above-average dulling effect on cutters. Responds well to steam-bending. Can pose challenges in gluing due to high density and oil content.
Odor: No characteristic odor.
Allergies/Toxicity: Although severe reactions are quite uncommon, Bulletwood has been reported to cause skin irritation. See the articles Wood Allergies and Toxicity and Wood Dust Safety for more information.
Pricing/Availability: Infrequently imported, Bulletwood is sometimes available as decking or flooring planks. Expect prices to be in the mid to upper range for an imported hardwood.
Sustainability: This wood species is not listed in the CITES Appendices or on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
Common Uses: Heavy construction (within its natural range), decking, flooring, boatbuilding, bent parts, and turned objects.
Comments: Bulletwood is an incredibly strong, dense wood which has good durability in exterior applications.
Scans/Pictures: A special thanks to Steve Earis for providing the turned photo of this wood species.