Albarco, bacu


Material Information

Albarco, bacu
Physical Description:
Gerry, Eloise, b. 1885
Forest Products Laboratory (U.S.)
U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Forest Service, Forest Products Laboratory ( Madison, Wis )
Publication Date:

Record Information

Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
aleph - 29197656
oclc - 231698342
System ID:

Full Text

I { F'-JL IC" s

Forest Products Laboratory,I Forest Ser .-ice
*.. .. ',*.[::it.. ont of Vrriculture


\'nrir.:'tr "i ..... : "*.i. .rs

'' R . -" ,.

TLL'.,I I J Forest Products
Division of Silvicultural Relations

The ,_-rns Cariniana,2 to i-hich albarco belongs, is P'-.> up of 10 or more
species of large trees that occur from Brazil to Venezuela and Col<..ia (9,

Albarco, or bacu as it is called in Venezuela (Maracaibo rgo) ), is ti
chief t'xpc:.rt timber of the f..'ly Lecytt-idace:-e It has been exoted,
chiefly from Cart"i-. l.a, in limited amounts to Europe, particularly to rau
and England (2; 7), and to the United States for my -.-rs (). Alb..rco J
very similar to the .riazilian --* cies kuownm as jequitiba (chic fly F' .:
(Mart.) Kuntze) (9). Albarco 'is marketed under the misleading na .c.
"Colombian" at one time, but it is entirely unrelitec to 9"icteni'
and can readily be distinguished from it by its cellular structure__17).

The Tree

Albarco is said to be one of the most cormon trees in thje forests of north(
Colombia at elevations of 2 D to 2,(0.-i fect abve sea level, ?*i thie best
stair-.: at 500 to 1,"00 feet, on the lo:c.r slo-es and in the well-waterd
vall.'y,. (1). This species produce some of the largest an tallest trees f

2Kain-a .ned at Madison, Vis., in cooperation dtrh tlhe versiy of 7 sc n
1 2:tyo

the Colombian forests,

the trees' large buttresses (1, 7, 10).

The hark is very fibrous and is used by Colombian natives for rough cordage

The Wood


The thick sap-ood is oatmeal color and not very sharply defined. It shades
into yellowish- or pinkish-brorna The heartwood is reddish- or purplish-
broin sometimes with dark streaks. The color tends to fade on exposure (1,
3, 7, ).

Grain, Texture, and Figure

The grain may be straight or interlocked. The texture is medium (3, 9).
Albarco may be attractively figured (9, 10).


Albarco may show a medium to high luster (3, 7). It polishes well (1).

Odor and Taste

Albarco has no distinct odor or taste (3).


Th.c recorded weight of albarco wood is 31 to 43 pounds per cubic foot; the
recorded specific gravity is 0.50 to 0.70 (air-dry) (9).

Mechanical Properties

Locally, albarco is rated as strong, tough, and moderately hard and heavy

In some U. S. Navy tests (11), albarco plywood gave higher values in mechani-

Rept. No. R192

Se c,.r. i and hri:.k \ ',

VTit,'. careful seasoning, albarco oes n:ot w.arr, chIeck, or .rink excessively.
It has Cgood dimensional stab ility whI matnufactured, as indicated it
tendcni_-: to low absorption of moisture (2 9,, 10, 11).

I Liability

-*..yepiy colored specimens of albarco are reported to be resistant to de '- (9)
and, locally, engineers report the woo to be termite resistant.


apparently, wood grown in different 1ccalities shows considerable variability
Ji, 9), since there are conflicting statements on the workability Cf albarco
'ilel there are re .,-rts of considerable difficulty in savrini- and macliniri
albarco (L, 5), there are also statement (1) that no trouble -as experience
id that the wood works well, takes a filler readily, fir ishs smoo1, and
takes a high polish (1, 3, 9, 10).

he princir -,.I difficulty with albarco occurs when power machinmiry is:

'ntly contains considerable mineral matter
u- 'sted remedies for overcome ing difficult
special savws (for e-x:i,..le, saw: teetl tiie

ty in .-,:.ufacture are th.e of

ors are said to be cut without difficulty by both the rotary an-' sl',

Albarco is used locally to some extent for heavy planking and ;7ener'al co-
struction (3, 7, 8). Because it has a superficial resemblance in texture
and color to r-I.og)any, it has been mark ted as a cabinet and f-.,. .... w.ood.
Use of albarco for shipbuilding is also reported (12).


Albarco is reported to occur in consi erab.le quantity (9), so that moans
for overc--ii. rec,':'v.ied drawbacks miht 'elli lead to proftabie u-ilivation

F.ent. i:-, R1921



ructural I

owth rings


3 vary irom aisT.inct to inaisxinct in aioarco U_, -.LU,

r vessels are readily seen and may contain tyloses.

Lns occur in the wood parenchyma, The tangential bar
ellss, as seen on a smooth end-grain surface, form ni
-entric lines that aid in distinguishing albarco fron


3 1262 08924 2217