Tuesday, July 30, 2013


Danggai - finished with butcher's block oil
This is a tropical wood from the Philippines. It's endangered, and you can only harvest it as part of a sustainable forestry project. That makes getting your hands on danggai mighty difficult here in God's Country of Wisconsin. My post on it will be brief (mainly because it's also hard to gather information on ), but read on...

According to the documents from the Philippine government, danggai's "proper" name is Kingiodendron. "Dend-" looks like the Greek for "tree." That means that my earlier guess of "king's wood" in bastardized English/Greek might be more accurately "King's tree". We're going with the common local name, danggai ("done-GUY") from now on.

Apparently my piece came from Bondoc Peninsula in Quezon Peninsula from a certified government forestry project. The project was designed to protect the rain forest and increase coconut production.

I've got precious little of it, and my uncle only has a few hundred board feet of it, so it's mostly useful as a trim or decorative piece. He did once build a spiral staircase out of it for someone who has more money than brains (if I had more money than brains I would totally do this). I actually was the lucky recipient of some of the offal from that project, which I've worked into usable pieces.

It's fairly hard, but it isn't too terribly heavy. I can't give you any stats as to it's Janka Hardness or crushing strength because I can't find good information on the species anywhere on the internet.

It has a tight grain pattern, which is fairly common among tropical woods. Its grain pattern, also like many tropical woods, can appear variable. In the first picture that I posted, it looks relatively straight, but it can be downright wild.

Danggai - unfinished, showing irregular grain patterning
Its color ranges from light tan to rich brown, and it is commonly flecked with dark coloration. With a finish on it it darkens, becomes deeper and richer, and brings out a slightly more reddish character in its browns. Compare the following two pictures, which are the same piece with and without a butcher's block oil finish.

Danggai - unfinished

Danggai - finished with butcher's block oil

If you end up with anything made from this, know that you have a unique piece. It may grow on trees (zing), but we can't get much of it here in the States. When my stock of it is gone, I may be able to get some from my uncle's... but when that's gone, I'm not even sure if he can get more of it easily anymore.

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