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Ash, Victorian

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Victorian ash is the trade name for two of the tallest hardwood species in the world. This Australian hardwood takes its name from the fact that it grows in the alpine areas of Victoria, Tasmania and New South Wales. It can refer to either mountain ash or alpine ash and is marketed under the trade names Tasmanian oak or Victorian ash, although it is important to note that the proportions of each species can vary considerably.

Victorian Ash is mainly available in Victoria, Tasmania and NSW, with limited availability to other parts of Australia.

Victorian ash timber usually has a straight grain but may also produce fiddleback markings and have visible gum veins. It has a course texture. The heartwood ranges from pale pink to yellowish brown and a walnut colour can be achieved by steaming with ammonia. The heartwood is often indistinguishable in colour from the softwood.

Care needs to be taken when drying Victorian ash because it is prone to collapse and internal checking, as well as surface checking on the tangential surface. There is minimal shrinkage after drying. To ensure good quality boards, logs are quarter-cut, which provides excellent dimensional stability. Reconditioning is standard practice.

While Victorian ash can be used for general construction, such as framing, its low to moderate durability means it is best suited for interior applications such as flooring, paneling, high value joinery and furniture. Victorian ash is also used to manufacture plywood and may also be used for boxes, crates and paper pulp. Victorian ash is grown as a plantation timber due to its quick growth and resistance to insect attack.

Appearance

Victorian ash timber can range from a pale pink to pale yellow or brownish colour. The heartwood and sapwood colours are generally quite hard to tell apart, with sapwood 25 to 50mm wide.

Victorian ash features a moderately course texture and has a predominately straight grain, although it may be wavy in parts resulting in a fiddleback appearance. Gum veins are also a common appearance feature.

It will provide a light, creamy-coloured timber for appearance applications, although a richer walnut colour can also be achieved by steaming Victorian ash with ammonia.

Common Applications

Victorian ash can be used for protected structural applications, such as timber framing, but it is best suited to indoor applications and furniture due its low to moderate durability. Flooring, paneling and high value joinery are some of its more common applications, although it is also used for agricultural implements, oars, cooperage, boxes, crates, paper pulp and in the manufacture of plywood.

Workability

A strong and stable timber, Victorian ash offers good all round workability. It planes, sands, finishes and glues well, and will readily steam and bend. This makes Victorian ash an ideal timber for internal applications and furniture.

Origin of Timber

NSW

Availability - Further Information

Victorian ash is predominantly available in the states that it grows, being Victoria, New South Wales and Tasmania. The timber is often sold to other states mixed with mountain ash and messmate under the trade name Tasmanian oak.

Availability - Further Information

Native Forest

Shrinkage

Very Low Low Medium High Very High

Tangential :

8.50%

Radial:

5.20%

Unit Movement Tangential:

0.31%

Unit Movement Radial:

0.20%

Strength Group

Very High

High

Reasonably High

Medium High

Medium

Reasonably Low

Low

Very Low

Unseasoned:

S1

S2

S3

S4

S5

S6

S7

Seasoned:

SD1

SD2

SD3

SD4

SD5

SD6

SD7

SD8

Stress Grade

Structural
No. 1
Structural
No. 2
Structural
No. 3
Structural
No. 4
Structural
No. 5

Unseasoned:

F14

F11

F8

F7

F5

Seasoned:

F22

F17

F14

F11

F8

Density per Standard

Seasoned:

650kg/m3

Unseasoned:

1050kg/m3

Joint Group

Very High

High

Reasonably High

Medium

Low

Very Low

Unseasoned:

J1

J2

J3

J4

J5

J6

Seasoned:

JD1

JD2

JD3

JD4

JD5

JD6

Colour

  White, yellow, pale straw to light brown Pink to pink brown Light to dark red Brown, chocolate, mottled or streaky
   

Mechanical Properties

Modulus of Rupture - Unseasoned:

65.9

Modulus of Rupture - Seasoned:

110

Modulus of Elasticity - Unseasoned:

12.6

Modulus of Elasticity - Seasoned:

15.5

Maximum Crushing Strength - Unseasoned:

31.5

Maximum Crushing Strength - Seasoned:

61.6

Impact - Unseasoned:

13.7

Impact - Seasoned:

19.7

Toughness - Unseasoned:

Medium - 15 - 24 Nm

Toughness - Seasoned:

Medium - 15 - 24 Nm

Hardness - Unseasoned:

3.7

Hardness - Seasoned:

5

Durability

Low Moderate Reasonably High High
(0 - 5 yrs) (5 - 15 yrs) (15 - 25 yrs) (more than 25 yrs)

In-Ground:

(0 - 7 yrs) (7 - 15 yrs) (15 - 40 yrs) (More than 40 yrs)

Above ground:

(0 - 20 yrs, usually < 5) (21 - 40 yrs) (41 - 64 yrs) (More than 60 yrs)

Marine Borer Resistance:

Lyctid Borer Susceptibility:

Not Susceptible

Lyctid Borer Susceptibility - Other:

S – Tas, NSW; NS – Vic

Termite Resistance:

Not Resistant

Fire Properties

0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20

EFH Ignitibility:

0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

EFH Spread-of-Flame Index:

EFH Smoke-Developed Index:

Critical Radiance Flux - Lower:

>2.2 and <4.5 kW/m2

Critical Radiance Flux - Higher:

>2.2 and <4.5 kW/m2

Smoke Development Rate:

<750
1 - non-combustible 2 - reasonably non-combustible 3 - slightly combustible 4 - combustible

Fire Properties Group
Number:

Average Specific Extinction Area:

<250

Bushfire Resistance:

BAL 12.5 and 19 – Door and window joinery only

Joinery

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.

 

Doors

Whether manufactured from solid or engineered timber, there are many stylish and practical options that won't compromise on strength and structural performance. A distinctive timber door can also create visual impact, adding value to any commercial or domestic building.

Timber makes an attractive choice for door design and construction, offering a strength, flexibility and versatility that other materials find hard to match. 

Protected from moisture, a timber door will perform satisfactorily for the life of any building. With regular maintenance, carefully designed and finished timber doors can perform in the toughest external environment and if required, can be refurbished or updated easily and effectively.

This application guide outlines the common elements involved in specifying and finishing timber internal and external doors.

Panelling, Interior

Internal panelling, also known as appearance boards and linings, is not just a practical means of covering one or more walls and ceilings in a building, its inclusion in a room's interior design can generate looks that are both dramatic and stylish. Internal paneling comes as either solid natural timber paneling or as sheets of engineered wood products that provide a durable and hardwearing surface for areas subject to high impact. As they typically function as appearance products they generally have no structural requirements. This guide describes the variety of panelling products available and outlines the straightforward process of installing them.

Mouldings

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.

Stairs, Interior

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.

Flooring

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.

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