American Poplar / Tulipwood Timber

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What is American Poplar / Tulipwood?

American Poplar / Tulipwood timber comes from various Eastern States of America. It is often used for kitchen furniture carcasses as it is kiln dried to between about 8-12% av.m.c. and is stable for profiles and mouldings. It has a soft texture and is predominantly pale cream to light green in colour, and often within each board there will be vivid purple and black colouring. This is not a defect, but should be considered when finishing. Thicknesses: 25mm, 32mm, 38mm, 51mm, 76mm, 100mm and sizes are generally random 125mm - 300mm with lengths mainly 2.1m - 4.8m.

Latin name Liriodendron tulipifera

Also known as American yellow poplar (UK), American whitewood, tulip tree (UK and USA), canary wood (UK), canary whitewood (UK)

Introduction Note: the recommended name for this timber in the UK is American yellow poplar. There are other, unrelated species which are also called tulipwood.

Environmental Not listed in CITES. Available from well-managed sources.

American Poplar / Tulipwood Distribution Eastern USA and Canada.


American Poplar / Tulipwood Properties

The Tree A large tree attaining a height of 37m or more, and a diameter of 2m or more.

The Timber The sapwood is white, and in second-growth trees, very wide; the heartwood is variable in colour, ranging from olive green to yellow or brown, and may be streaked with steel-blue. The annual growth terminates in a white band of parenchyma giving a subdued figure to longitudinal surfaces. The wood is' straight-grained. fine-textured, fairly soft and light in weight about 510 kg/m³ when dried

Drying Dries easily and well, with little degrade

Strength Similar to idigbo (Terminalia ivorensis) in general strength properties.

Working Qualities Good - Easy to work, and finishes to a fine, smooth surface Takes nails without tending to split, glues well, can be stained polished or painted, and holds hard enamel finishes excellently

Durability Slightly durable. Non-resistant to decay. Heartwood is moderately resistant to preservative treatment, sapwood is permeable.

Moisture Movement Medium

Physical Properties Low bending, shock resistance, stiffness and compression properties. Medium steam bending.

American Poplar / Tulipwood Density (mean, Kg/m³) 510

Texture Fine


Working with American Poplar / Tulipwood

American Poplar / Tulipwood Use(s) Joinery - Interior, Furniture, Light construction, Kitchen cabinets, Doors, Paneling, Mouldings, Edge-glued panels, Plywood, Turning and carving.

American Poplar / Tulipwood Colour(s) Yellow brown

What is FAS Grade

The FAS grade, which derives from an original grade "First And Seconds", will provide the user with long, clear cuttings - best suited for high quality furniture, interior joinery and solid wood mouldings. Minimum board size is 6" (152mm) and wider and 8' (2.44m) and longer. The FAS grade includes a range of boards that yield from 83.3% (10⁄12ths) to 100% clear-wood cuttings over the entire surface of the board. The clear cuttings must be a minimum size of 3" (76mm) wide by 7' (2.13m) long or 4" (102mm) wide by 5' (1.52m) long. The number of these cuttings permitted depends on the size of the board with most boards permitting one to two. The minimum width and length will vary, depending on species and whether the board is green or kiln dried. Both faces of the board must meet the minimum requirement for FAS.

Timbersource are a leading online hardwood timber merchant in the UK, supplying American Poplar / Tulipwood timber to the joinery, carpentry, construction and building trade at competitive prices. To Contact Us click HERE

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