Flooded gum (Eucalyptus grandis) is a large, fast growing hardwood timber. When grown in a favourable environment, flooded gum is one of the most productive plantation eucalypts. It is a very tall forest tree, reaching 45 to 55 metres in height, with a trunk of between one and two metres in diameter. The trunk displays rough, stringy grey-brown bark at the base, with a white, powdery bark extending above.
The flooded gum grows on the eastern coast of Australia, tolerating sandy through to heavy clay soils. It stretches from Newcastle on the New South Wales central coast to Bundaberg in southern Queensland. Smaller stands of flooded gum occur to the west of Mackay on the central Queensland coast and in pockets in the ranges from north west of Townsville to west of Bloomfield in far north Queensland. Flooded gum has been grown in plantations in Queensland and New South Wales, making the sawn timber of this sought after species readily available.
In Australia, flooded gum is mainly harvested for panelling, sawn building timber, flooring and joinery. It has decorative applications in high quality furniture, as it is easy to carve and turn. Boats and structural plywood can also be built from this timber. It has a range of general construction uses due to its class 2 above ground durability (15 to 40 years), although it is less durable in-ground (5-15 years). While its sapwood is not susceptible to lyctid borer, the timber is not termite resistant.
As its name suggests, flooded gum has heartwood that is pink to red-brown in colour, with paler sapwood. The timber can be moderately course and is predominantly straight grained.
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Flooded gum produces a warm coloured timber with pink hues that are deep without being too dark. The heartwood ranges in colour from pale pink to red-brown, however the sapwood is paler and not always clearly differentiated from the heartwood.
The wonderful blend of soft pinks and peach tones make this a charming timber, and flooded gum may contain evidence of insect trails and pinholes that add to its character and beauty. The grain is fairly uniform: straight to slightly interlocked, creating no distinctive figure. The timber’s texture is moderately course and even.
Flooded gum is an extremely versatile timber for construction and decorative applications. As sawn timber in general house framing, cladding, internal and external flooring and mouldings, flooded gum is an ideal choice. It is also ideal for use in linings, joinery, fascia and barge-boards.
The decorative applications of flooded gum are obvious if you’re looking for a timber of distinctive warmth. It has been used for fine furniture, as well as durable outdoor furniture. The timber’s character features distinctive pinhole and insect marks making it well suited for use in joinery, carving and turnery.
Other uses of flooded gum include structural plywood and in boat building (framing components, planking and decking). Flooded gum has also been used for boat oars, dowel rods, broom handles, brush ware and fruit cases.
Flooded gum is moderately easy to work with hand tools (rated 3 on a 6 class scale). It can be easily sanded and machines and turns well to deliver a smooth finish.
This species of timber can be dried satisfactorily with conventional air and kiln seasoning methods, although care should be taken in the early stages of drying to avoid collapse and surface checking. The sapwood is able to accept impregnation with preservative but the heartwood is resistant to contemporary commercial treatments.
No difficulty has been experienced with the use of standard fittings and fastenings with flooded gum. The timber can be bonded using standard glues and it will readily accept paint, stain and polish. In addition, flooded gum accepts oiling.
Origin of Timber
Availability – Further Information
Flooded gum is widely available as sawn timber. There are several natural sources along the east coast of Australia and it has also been grown in plantations in Queensland and New South Wales.
Timber joinery products offer a classic, unique and stylish touch to any interior or exterior design. The products are produced for a variety of internal applications including door and window frames, cabinetry, skirtings, mouldings and architraves. When looking to the outdoors, joinery products range from decorative eaves and posts to eye-catching railings.
Many timber species are suitable for joinery products and care should be taken in selecting the perfect timber for the particular product and its intended finish. Rare and exotic species such as Teak and Rosewood can generate pieces of outstanding beauty but material cost and availability are also important considerations.
Commercially available species like Tasmanian oak, Australian cypress, spotted gum and the like, often make the more practical choice, with the added benefit that they can be easily matched with other timber products within the building, like flooring.
Solid timber for joinery products is generally supplied as ‘clear finish grade’ but ‘paint grade’ options are available and these are usually comprised of a composite material like MDF or glulam.
A large number of specialist suppliers and producers offer the consumer extensive choice of profiles for all of the most common and popular joinery products. Choice is in many cases, limited only by imagination.
Cabinetry is often associated with joinery and most typically includes, cupboards, benches and other similar ‘built in’ furniture. Like joinery, cabinetry is generally specified as either paint or clear finish grade and naturally for clear finish grade timbers, appearance and surface finish are critical in achieving a successful application.
The inherent appeal and strength of timber makes it the obvious choice for fencing. Timber fencing not only provides a natural look in keeping with the outdoor environment but it also enables the construction of a long lasting, durable property boundary. Fences come in many forms including the traditional paling, picket, post and railing styles. Most rely on a structural frame of posts embedded into the ground and two or more rails spanning between the posts. The ultimate selection of a suitable fence type or style is determined by application and aesthetics. A fence can serve a variety of purposes, including the provision of security, privacy and safety in addition to defining property boundaries. Specification for durability is important, especially for posts, given their exposure to high moisture in the ground.
This section provides an overview to best practice methods in specifying, installing and finishing a timber fence.
Timber mouldings add style, class and an elegant touch to any interior, offering a depth of beauty and warmth in a way only wood can. From period times to those more contemporary, timber mouldings have graced the most stylish and chic of interiors, decorating furniture, doors and windows. Decorative mouldings such as architraves, skirtings, cornices and ceiling roses remain an ever popular choice for designers seeking a finished result of beauty, style and quality. Like all timber products, mouldings are extremely versatile and durable, enhancing the aesthetics of any interior and functioning as the perfect finishing touch for designs with a focus on beauty and splendour.
Mouldings can be created from any commercially available species of timber and the moisture resistant wood product, MDF, is also a popular choice. When it comes to style and design, the sky is the limit with many suppliers offering custom matching to existing mouldings, as well as efficient supply of those that are individually designed. Installation is a breeze, with the majority of mouldings easily attached with a reputable wood adhesive. Finishes can be tailored by design requirements and the preferences of the end user, with mouldings commonly being both stained and/or painted.
Rails and Balustrades, Interior
The versatility, beauty and strength of timber makes it the ideal material choice for interior handrails and balustrades. Treated softwood and durable hardwoods are the most popular timber choices and these can be turned to create a range of unique styles and designs to suit a variety of tastes and decors.
When used internally balustrades and handrails are typically finished with a clear lacquer to showcase the natural beauty of the timber and with appropriate care and attention will last a lifetime. Find here general information on member sizes, connections and suitable materials, as well as important considerations, for the specification and construction of interior handrails and balustrades.
Interior staircase work is considered a specialised area of carpentry and joinery as its construction requires high levels of workmanship, detail and accuracy. Many interior stairs are built from quality joinery timber, cut and seasoned especially for staircases. Interior stairs differ considerably in design, from simple straight flights, commonly used in domestic work, to more elaborate stairs, constructed purposely as stand out features in public and commercial buildings.
The construction procedure described here applies to most general type stairs of either conventional or contemporary construction.
Timber pergolas offer an attractive and economical way to create functional living and entertainment areas in the outdoors. Pergolas designed with care can maximise both winter sunshine and summer shade, ensuring outdoor living is enjoyed all year round. With its natural look, durability and versatility there are few other materials that can match the advantages of timber in pergola construction.
Pergolas are typically constructed via a straightforward post and beam process, which can be attached to an existing building or form a free standing structure. A protective finishing coat will preserve the life of the pergola and a variety of paints and stains are available on the market to facilitate this.
Rails and Balustrades, Exterior
The versatility, strength and natural beauty of timber makes it the ideal material choice for external handrails and balustrades. Usually built from treated softwood and durable hardwoods these timbers can be turned to create a range of styles and designs, resulting in balusters that are unique as they are individual. Painting, staining and oil based finishes broadly cover the wide range of finishing options available and with the appropriate care and attention a timber balustrade can last a lifetime.
This guide provides general information on member sizes, connections and suitable materials to enable the construction of a long lasting, attractive and durable timber handrail or balustrade.
No other cladding material can offer the design freedom, ease of handling, range and natural beauty of timber. Timber cladding can create a building to suit almost any environment, taste or style.
Timber cladding has an inbuilt flexibility that provides natural advantages on sites subject to high winds, extreme climate, highly reactive soils, subsidence or earth tremors. And unlike masonry and other rigid materials, the natural resilience and high strength to weight ratio of timber enables it to withstand far greater stresses and movement.
Modern finishes give a long lasting and attractive appearance to timber cladding and can be used to change the colour and style of the building, making it a versatile material that will keep pace with changing tastes and fashions.
Whether for structural or finished flooring applications, timber offers durability, versatility and adaptability. The warmth, strength and natural beauty of timber flooring has proved enduringly popular in a wide variety of interior settings.
Timber flooring is a timeless product, offering a warmth and natural beauty largely unmatched by other flooring options. This article provides an overview of the installation of solid timber strip flooring over bearers and joists, timber based sheet flooring products and concrete slabs. Timber flooring is typically supplied as either solid timber or laminated wood products, made from layers of bonded timber. It fits together with a tongue and groove joint and once in place, is sanded and finished. There is a wide variety of species to select flooring from and the right species for a given application will be dependent on numerous factors. Information relating to species selection, environmental assessment, finish selection and recommended maintenance routines are all provided in this section.