Common Name(s): Utile, Sipo, Sipo Mahogany
Scientific Name: Entandrophragma utile
Distribution: West and Central Africa
Tree Size: 150-200 ft (45-60 m) tall, 3-5 ft (1-1.5 m) trunk diameter
Average Dried Weight: 40 lbs/ft3 (635 kg/m3)
Specific Gravity (Basic, 12% MC): .53, .63
Janka Hardness: 1,180 lbf (5,260 N)
Modulus of Rupture: 15,060 lbf/in2 (103.8 MPa)
Elastic Modulus: 1,689,000 lbf/in2 (11.65 GPa)
Crushing Strength: 8,280 lbf/in2 (57.1 MPa)
Shrinkage: Radial: 4.9%, Tangential: 6.9%, Volumetric: 11.8%, T/R Ratio: 1.4
Grain/Texture: Grain is interlocked, with a medium uniform texture. Moderate natural luster.
Endgrain: Diffuse-porous; solitary and radial multiples; large pores in no specific arrangement, very few; reddish brown heartwood gum deposits occasionally present; parenchyma vasicentric, banded; narrow rays, spacing normal.
Rot Resistance: Rated as moderately durable to durable, with mixed reports on insect resistance.
Workability: Utile can be troublesome to work in some machining operations, (i.e., planing, routing, etc.), resulting in tearout due to its interlocked grain. It will also react when put into direct contact with iron, becoming discolored and stained. Turns, glues, and finishes well.
Odor: Utile has a mild, cedar-like scent while being worked.
Allergies/Toxicity: Although severe reactions are quite uncommon, Utile has been reported to cause skin irritation. See the articles Wood Allergies and Toxicity and Wood Dust Safety for more information.
Pricing/Availability: Not frequently available, prices for Utile should be moderate for an imported hardwood.
Sustainability: This wood species is not listed in the CITES Appendices, but is on the IUCN Red List. It is listed as vulnerable due to a population reduction of over 20% in the past three generations, caused by a decline in its natural range, and exploitation.
Common Uses: Furniture, cabinetry, veneer, boatbuilding, flooring, and turned objects.
Comments: Sometimes called Sipo Mahogany, or simply Sipo, Utile is in the Meliaceae family, and is somewhat related to the true mahoganies found in the Swietenia genus.