Common Names: Merbau
Scientific Name: Intsia Bijuga
Other Names: Kwila, Ipil, Vesi
Distribution: Grown in tropical forests, Merbau is grown in South East Asia, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Solomon Islands, Fiji and North Queensland. Australian Merbau is largely sourced from Queensland plantations.
Appearance: Merbau is a premium hardwood with an attractive timber with deep a deep, re-brown tone and an alluring grain and texture.
Heartwood may be bright yellow when first harvested before palling to a dark reddish-brown tone. The surrounding sapwood can be up to 8cm wide and is usually a white or pale yellow colour. If untreated, Sapwood is susceptible to attack by lyctid borer.
Gum bleed is a possibility however not prevalent. When exposed to moist conditions, contact with iron will cause the formation of black stains; this is often referred to as ‘iron stain’.
Texture: Moderately course but even, grain prone to slightly interlock to produce an attractive ribbon figure on radial face.
Properties: very durable hardwood, difficult to impregnate with preservatives, rather greasy to the touch, quite resistant to termites, gum bleed is a possibility.