Know Your Wood: Solid Wood Types for Furniture, Characteristics, and Quality

Solid Wood Types for Furniture

To make a wide range of furniture, the one and only material is wood. However, to make the furniture differ in quality, different choice of wood is what it takes. Fortunately, Indonesia has a lot of resources of wood. This country is also blessed with a large amount of furniture artisans as well.

Solid wood is a type of wood oftentimes used in the making of furniture. It is widely used, thanks to its durability and strength to make both indoor and outdoor furniture. In order to buy, or even import a certain kind of solid wood, it is essential to know better about the types of wood itself. It is actually not only the types, but also the characteristics and qualities. Hence, you know which one will suit your preferences.

Solid Wood Types for Furniture

Understanding Solid Wood

In the world of furniture, there are two types of wood commonly used as the materials: solid wood and engineered wood. Solid wood, to be easily explained, is lumber product which is processed directly from the trees to be made as furniture. Contrasting that, engineered wood involves some processes to make a new kind of wood material. In Indonesia, some commonly-used wood types will include teak, mahogany, oak, mango, etc.

It is essential to note that not all aforementioned woods have the same quality. As the species differ, distinct characteristics will also follow. Even there is a grading for a certain type of wood – teak is one ultimate example. Teak wood is graded A, B, and C according to its quality; and this grading will affect the price as well. Unfortunately, apparently this aspect is often found amiss from buyers’ consideration.

Solid wood requires kiln-dry to be able to befit the requirement of furniture material: dry wood. Kiln-dry will cut the water amount inside the wood. This step is very important especially when the wood is going to be exported. The drier the wood, then the better durability it will obtain.

Types of Solid Wood

Teak wood

Best Patio Furniture
Best Patio Furniture

Excellent strength, tight grain, and oily wood make teak wood become the utmost kind of solid wood perfect for furniture. Teak is commonly used for both indoor and outdoor furniture due to its weather resistance feature (the oil content also supports the wood’s capability to resist bad weather). In addition to those features, its appearance – light brown with tight pores make buyers to be attracted to this type of solid wood.

With such characteristics, it is not a surprise that this wood has the highest price for the list of solid wood mentioned soon. As a result, furniture made from teak wood is often high in price as well. Interestingly, despite the price, teak furniture has high demands as well.

This type of wood is widely found in Southeast Asia, including Indonesia. Here, the PT. Perhutani – a state-owned company managed the plantations, as well as managing the harvested lumber and finding the channels of trade.


Oak Wood

oak wood furniture
oak wood furniture | source pinterest

With its whitish brown color and distinctive textures, oak wood is also used as furniture material. Moreover, walls and flooring also employ this type of wood as well. But, although it is resistant enough to moisture, it is best to have furniture, wall, and flooring made from oak to be indoor.


Mahogany wood furniture
Mahogany wood furniture | source pinterest

Becoming another one of the most commonly-used wood for furniture, mahogany wood is most likely to be found in tropical area. The color of this wood, if polished, looks shining; as if complementing the already elegant-looking reddish brown appearance. In addition, mahogany wood has straight grain and high durability.

With those aforementioned features, it’s not exaggerating that mahogany is the suitable wood for classic furniture. Antique-looking furniture is also best if made from this wood. The price is also less-pricey compared to teak wood, hence it makes mahogany has its own avid buyers.

But still, compared to teak wood, mahogany’s quality is inferior. Moisture is the main problem when it comes to mahogany; therefore it’s not recommended to use mahogany for garden or patio furniture. Instead, use mahogany to make indoor furniture, and you’ll be satisfied with the result.


Walnut wood furniture
Walnut wood furniture | source pinterest

Colored dark brown, walnut becomes one of the solid wood familiar to be used as furniture. It has straight grains; but oftentimes you will find unique whorls in its grains too. Thanks to this feature, walnut is widely used for indoor furniture. Vintage and classic are two words to describe how walnut furniture will look like.

However, the dark brown walnut wood owned can change over time. So, you will need to repaint it to keep the color fresh, as well as to make your furniture looks like new. Probably this is why this wood is not so popular within furniture owners in Indonesia, unlike in Western countries.

Mango wood

mango wood furniture
mango wood furniture | source pinterest

There are loads of people own mango trees in their houses, but turns out mango wood can be categorized as solid wood. As it is also a solid wood, mango wood can be used to make furniture as well as it is strong, long-lasting, and not that hard to cut and process. It’s relatively similar to teak wood – but much cheaper and can easily be found.

Since it is cheap enough and easy to obtain, many manufacturers use this resource as their material in order to make furniture. Naturally colored light brown, manufacturers use this to make household furniture which can be sold in low price. Unfortunately, despite the upsides that make mango wood becomes locally popular; its demands are considerably low, specifically for foreign countries.


Mindi wood furniture
Mindi wood furniture | source dekoruma

Some of you may have not heard about mindi wood. It’s widely known as white cedar, and to make it as furniture is not impossible. Similar to walnut, you will find unique patterns on its fiber. So, it is not surprising to have white cedar, or mindi wood, as antique or classic indoor furniture. It is affordable, easy to process – like cutting and shaping. Hence that’s why manufacturers process this wood into many new forms/products.

Well, those aforementioned woods are popular woods commonly used in Indonesia to make furniture. There are still many other types left to mention, but those six woods are the ones popular within furniture manufacturers or artisans. If you want to purchase woods for furniture purposes, it is important to learn its upsides and downsides, as well as the woods’ characteristics. Following that, you can decide which one will suit your furniture preferences best.

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