Limber Pine

Limber Pine (Pinus flexilis)
Limber Pine (Pinus flexilis)

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Common Name(s): Limber Pine, Rocky Mountain White Pine

Scientific Name: Pinus flexilis

Distribution: Mountainous regions of western North America

Tree Size: 40-50 ft (12-15 m) tall, 2-3 ft (.6-1 m) trunk diameter

Average Dried Weight: 28 lbs/ft3 (450 kg/m3)

Specific Gravity (Basic, 12% MC): .37, .45

Janka Hardness: 430 lbf (1,910 N)

Modulus of Rupture: 9,100 lbf/in2 (62.8 MPa)

Elastic Modulus: 1,170,000 lbf/in2 (8.07 GPa)

Crushing Strength: 5,290 lbf/in2 (36.5 MPa)

Shrinkage: Radial: 2.4%, Tangential: 5.1%, Volumetric: 8.2%, T/R Ratio: 2.1

Color/Appearance: Heartwood is a light brown, sometimes with a slightly reddish hue, narrow sapwood is a pale yellow to nearly white. Color tends to darken with age.

Grain/Texture: Grain is straight with an even, medium texture.

Endgrain: Large resin canals, numerous and evenly distributed, mostly solitary; earlywood to latewood transition somewhat gradual, color contrast low; tracheid diameter medium to large.

Rot Resistance: The heartwood is rated as moderate to low in decay resistance.

Workability: Limber Pine is easy to work with both hand and machine tools. Glues and finishes well.

Odor: Limber Pine has a faint, resinous odor while being worked.

Allergies/Toxicity: Working with pine has been reported to cause allergic skin reactions and/or asthma-like symptoms in some people. See the articles Wood Allergies and Toxicity and Wood Dust Safety for more information.

Pricing/Availability: Because the trees are small, slow-growing, and with an irregular growth form, there is virtually no commercial value for Limber Pine lumber. The tree is sometimes harvested incidentally along with other, more commercially valuable species.

Sustainability: This wood species is not listed in the CITES Appendices, and is reported by the IUCN as being a species of least concern.

Common Uses: Fuelwood, boxes, and rough construction.

Comments: Limber Pine is a member of the White Pine group, which includes primary timber producers such as: Sugar Pine, Western White Pine, and Eastern White Pine. But unlike it’s close relatives, Limber Pine has very little commercial value, and isn’t commonly used for lumber.

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Limber Pine (Pinus flexilis)
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Limber Pine (endgrain)
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Limber Pine (endgrain 10x)
Limber Pine (endgrain 10x)
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