Millettia laurentii

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Millettia laurentii
Tree in flower
Tangentially-sawn wood
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Fabales
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily: Faboideae
Tribe: Millettieae
Genus: Millettia
Species: M. laurentii
Binomial name
Millettia laurentii
Emile August(e) Joseph De Wildeman
WengeHow to read this color infobox
About these coordinates     Color coordinates
Hex triplet #645452
sRGBB  (rgb) (100, 84, 82)
CMYKH   (c, m, y, k) (0.00, 0.16, 0.18, 0.61)
HSV       (h, s, v) (7°, 18%, 39%)
Source [1]
B: Normalized to [0–255] (byte)
H: Normalized to [0–100] (hundred)

Millettia laurentii is a legume tree native to the Republic of Congo, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Cameroon, Gabon and Equatorial Guinea. The species is listed as endangered in the IUCN Red List: Category EN A1cd, principally due to destruction of its habitat and over-exploitation for timber.[1] Wenge, a dark colored wood, is the product of Millettia laurentii. Other names sometimes used for wenge include African Rosewood, Faux Ebony, Dikela, Mibotu, Bokonge and Awong. The wood's distinctive color is standardized as a "wenge" color in many systems.

quartersawn surface

Wood[edit]

Wenge (/ˈwɛŋɡ/ WENG-gay) is a tropical timber, very dark in color with a distinctive figure and a strong partridge wood pattern. The wood is heavy and hard, suitable for flooring and staircases.

Several musical instrument makers employ wenge in their products. Alembic Guitars have used this wood on numerous occasions for custom instruments. Mosrite Used it for bodies of their Brass Rail models. Ibanez and Cort use it for the five-piece necks of some of their electric basses. Warwick electric basses use FSC sourced wenge for fingerboards and necks as of 2013. Conklin Guitars and Basses makes use of wenge for bodies, fingerboards and necks. Crush drums use it on their limited reserve wenge drum kit.

The wood is popular in segmented woodturning because of its dimensional stability and color contrast when mixed with lighter woods such as maple. This makes it especially sought after in the manufacture of high-end wood canes.

The wood is sometimes used in the making of archery bows, particularly as a laminate in the production of flatbows. It can also be used in the making of rails or pin blocks on hammered dulcimers.

Health hazards[edit]

The dust produced when cutting or sanding wenge can cause dermatitis similar to the effects of poison ivy and is an irritant to the eyes. The dust also can cause respiratory problems and drowsiness.[citation needed] Splinters are septic, similar to those of greenheart (the wood of Chlorocardium rodiei).

Further reading[edit]

  • Baker, Mark (2004). Wood for Woodturners. Sussex: Guild of Master Craftsmen Publications. ISBN 1-86108-324-6. 

References[edit]