Spruce is a very important lumber because of its high yield potential and light color. It has a creamy, almost white color, which is similar to maple, but is more economical than maple and an even texture with a consistent straight gran. It stains well and is thus used for kitchen cabinets, picture frames, molding, furniture, musical instruments (pianos and violins), plywood and railroad sleepers. Spruce is also used as wood pulp in paper making.
Species: Picea engelmannii
Other Names: Engelmann Spruce, White Spruce
Spruce Origin: Canada (British Columbia, Alberta); Mexico (Chihuahua, Nuevo León); United States (Arizona, Idaho, Texas, Utah, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, California, Wyoming, Washington, Oregon, Colorado).
Tree Size: 130 ft (40 m) tall, 3 ft (1 m) trunk diameter
Average Dried Weight: 24 lbs/ft3 (385 kg/m3)
Specific Gravity (Basic, 12% MC): .33, .39
Janka Hardness: 390 lbf (1,740 N)
Modulus of Rupture: 9,010 lbf/in2 (62.2 MPa)
Elastic Modulus: 1,369,000 lbf/in2 (9.44 GPa)
Crushing Strength: 4,560 lbf/in2 (31.5 MPa)
Shrinkage: Radial: 3.8%, Tangential: 7.1%, Volumetric: 11.0%, T/R Ratio: 1.9
Drying: The drying method depends on the size of the wood. Any wood that is 1” in width (such as that used for siding) will be kiln dried. Any lumber that is over 2” wide will be air dried.
Workability: Spruce is very easy to work and is the wood of choice for many projects precisely for the ease with which spruce can be worked. Spruce can be glued, sanded, stained, nailed, screwed and turned well.
Sustainability: The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) does not list spruce in its appendices. The International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List of Threatened Species (IUCN) list spruce as a species of least concern.
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