Relative Hardness (Janka Scale)

The relative hardness of a wood refers to the force required to insert a .444 inch steel ball to half of its diameter into a piece of wood. Brazilian cherry is more than twice as hard as black walnut which means Brazilian cherry is more than twice as resistant to dings and scratches, it also means that it is twice as hard to cut. Though Brazilian Cherry and Santos Mahogany are hard the oily nature and straight grain make them relatively easy to machine. Carbide tipped blades and large horsepower modern tools allow carpenters to easily work with exotic woods.

To see what many of these wood types look like, visit our Wood Selection page.

Hardness Wood Species
3880 Curupy
3640 Ipe (Brazilian Walnut)
3540 Cumaru
2900 Bloodwood
2450 Red Walnut
2350 Brazilan Cherry
2345 Mesquite
2200 Santos Mahogany
2160 Tigerwood
1925 Merbau
1910 Jarrah
1860 Purple Heart
1820 Hickory
1725 Padauk
1650 Brazilian Oak (Cerejeira)
1630 Wedge
1500 Sapele
1450 Hard Maple
1380 Bamboo
1375 Cypress
1360 Quartersawn White Oak
1360 White Oak
1320 Ash
1300 Steamed Beech
1300 American Beech
1290 Red Oak
1260 Birch
1225 Reclaimed Heart Pine
1155 Teak
1125 Lyptus (Red Grandis)
1080 Peruvian
1010 Walnut
950 American Cherry
950 Soft Maple
870 Southern Yellow Pine
830 African Mahogany
660 Douglas Fir
600 Spanish Cedar
590 Alder
540 Paint Grade
540 Poplar – Stain Grade
460 Ponderosa Pine
430 White Pine