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European Siberian Larch Timber

General Description

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What is European Siberian Larch?

European Siberian Larch timber is a species of tree grown in arctic conditions and under much duress, although Larch grows faster than most coniferous trees from the same area. Native to western Russia, it is a timber that held in high esteem by the timber trade and used predominantly for construction work and as a hardy cladding material. It carries much natural resin and is especially resistant to decay.

Most European Larch boarding is imported 100mm and wider, although dimension stock is available, with lengths variable above 2.1m. Grades range from prime unsorted (I-III) grade through to 4ths grade.

Latin name Larix sibirica

Also known as Siberian larch, Russian larch

European Siberian Larch Environmental Listed in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species as LR – Lower Risk (least concern). Not listed in CITES. Available from well-managed sources.

Distribution The native distribution for L. sibirica extends across Siberia to Mongolia and northern China. In Siberia it is extracted from 'natural forest' and most of this timber is extemely slow grown material. In the eastern part of its range it hybridises with L.gmelinii and is known as Larix x czekanowskii. L.sibirica is also grown in plantations in Austria, Norway and Finland yielding more quickly grown material. It has been introduced into Canada and northern USA.

European Siberian Larch Properties

The Tree This is a medium sized deciduous, coniferous tree ranging in size from 20m to 40m tall with a diameter of 1m or slightly more. In favourable situations a long, clean, cylindrical bole for two-thirds of its length can be achieved.

The Timber The heartwood is pale reddish-brown to brick-red in colour, sharply defined from the narrow, lighter-coloured sapwood. It is a very resinous wood, with clearly marked annual rings. It has a straight grain, a fine, uniform texture and is rather heavy, weighing 590 kg/m³ when dried, it is likely that plantaion grown L.sibirica and that grown in more southerly Europe is of lower density. Its heartwood is listed as moderately durable, and its narrow sapwood means a high proportion of heartwood can be recovered for use.

European Siberian Larch Drying Difficult to dry due to its high resin content. Therefore it should be dried slowly to prevent checking and other drying defects.

Strength Likely to be similar to European larch which is about 50% harder than Scots pine and slightly stronger in bending and toughness. The strength values for slow grown L. sibirica material are likely to be slightly higher than for faster grown plantation sourced material.

Working Qualities Similar to European larch in that it saws, machines and finishes well but it tends to split on nailing and therefore drilling is recommended particularly at board ends.

Durability Slightly durable. Moderately durable. The heartwood is moderately resistant to preservative treatment and the sapwood is permeable. Especially resistant to decay

Treatability Extremely difficult

Moisture Movement Reported to be small

European Siberian Larch Density (mean, Kg/m³) 590 ( Ranging from 570 to 650)

Physical Properties Good overall strength. Very stiff. Low shock resistance. Stable.

Texture Fine

Working with European Siberian Larch

Use(s) Cladding, Joinery - Exterior, Flooring, Decking. Sea defences. Sleepers. Construction. Indoor gymnasiums and courts

European Siberian Larch Colour(s) Yellow brown (golden brown), Light brown, Reddish brown (pale)

Timbersource are a leading online softwood timber merchant in the UK, supplying European Larch timber to the joinery, carpentry, construction and building trade at competitive prices. To Contact Us click HERE

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Timbersource Ltd.

Quarry Way, Waterlip,
Shepton Mallet, Somerset,
United Kingdom