Pine, Caribbean

Caribbean pine is a durable and easily workable softwood widely used for construction, engineering and decorative purposes.

Other Names

Pinus Hodurensis, Yellow Pine, Caribaea Pine, Caribbean Longleaf, Pitch Pine, British Honduras Pine, Bahamas Pine, Nicaraguan Pitch Pine, Bastard Pine

Botanical Name

Pinus Caribaea

Common Form
Sawn
Species Type

Caribbean pine is a softwood widely used for construction, flooring, playground furniture and cladding. Other applications include the production of plywood, wood wool and paper products. The timber is also widely used for engineering purposes, such as power poles and piles. It is the second most widely planted species in Queensland, and is also planted in northern New South Wales, and is readily available in those states; it is also imported from Fiji.

The heartwood of Caribbean pine is yellow to golden brown, and its sapwood is usually noticeably paler. Its texture is rather coarse and uneven, with latewood and earlywood forming uneven bands, and the grain is usually straight. Knots are present in construction grades. There is a marked difference in colour between earlywood and latewood, which results in a pronounced figure when back sawn. It has a strong resin content and odour, and the resin can lead to problems when the timber is glued and sawn. 

Caribbean pine has a low degree of durability above and below ground, and although the sapwood can be treated with preservatives, the heartwood will not readily take preservatives. The timber is termite resistant and the sapwood is not prone to lyctid attack. 

Shrinkage

Very Low Low Medium High Very High

Tangential :

5.00%

Radial :

2.00%

Unit Movement Tangential:

0.34%

Unit Movement Radial:

Strength Group

Very High

High

Reasonably High

Medium High

Medium

Reasonably Low

Low

Very Low

Unseasoned:

S1

S2

S3

S4

S5

S6

S7

S8

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:

F8

F7

F5

F4

Seasoned:

F14

F11

F8

F7

F5

Density per Standard

Seasoned:

575kg/m3

Unseasoned:

1020kg/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:

69

Modulus of Rupture - Seasoned:

105

Modulus of Elasticity - Unseasoned:

12

Modulus of Elasticity - Seasoned:

14

Maximum Crushing Strength - Unseasoned:

33

Maximum Crushing Strength - Seasoned:

55

Impact - Unseasoned:

27

Impact - Seasoned:

17

Toughness - Unseasoned:

Toughness - Seasoned:

Hardness - Unseasoned:

2.7

Hardness - Seasoned:

5.1

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:

Termite Resistance:

Resistant

Fire Properties

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

Fire Properties Group
Number:

Group Number - Other:

3 if used on MDF or particleboard ≥12mm; veneer thickness 0.6-0.85mm

Average Specific Extinction Area:

<250

Bushfire Resistance:

BAL 12.5 and 19 - All AS 3959 Required Applications
Appearance

The sapwood of Caribbean pine is pale and the heartwood is yellow to golden brown. The grain is usually straight, though knots are present in construction grades, and the texture is somewhat coarse and uneven. A pronounced difference in colour between earlywood and latewood results in a very distinctive figure when back sawn.

Common Applications

Caribbean pine is widely used for engineering purposes, such as power poles and piles; construction purposes such as flooring, framing, laminated beams, cladding and decking, and playground equipment; and for decorative purposes including furniture, plywood, turnery and joinery. It is also used in the production of paper products and wood wool.

Workability

Caribbean pine is rated 5 to 4 on a 6 class scale - soft to firm - for indentation and facility of working with hand tools. When the timber is being dressed sharp planer blades are required to avoid compression of the softer earlywood and the ridged surfaces that result. Resin can be problem when sawing. Nails may at times follow the growth rings from deflection by latewood bands; good results can be obtained with nail guns. The timber glues satisfactorily, but absorbs glue differently depending on whether it is early- or latewood, though this mostly doesn't cause problems. It can be painted, stained and polished easily, though care has to be taken to avoid timber with high resin content.

Caribbean pine is a native of Central America, Cuba and the Bahamas.
Readily Available
VIC
Caribbean pine is readily available as sawn timber in Queensland and northern New South Wales.
Source of timber
Plantation
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Decking

Timber decking creates spaces that are functional, practical and aesthetically pleasing. With the right design and care a timber deck will make a valuable addition to any home or business, creating an outdoor living space that will be enjoyed for years to come.
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Cladding, External

The natural appeal, versatility and strength of timber makes it the superior choice for external cladding. Through specification, planning, design and finishing processes, timber cladding not only creates a building of superior strength, acoustic and thermal performance but also creates a place of beauty, style and natural appeal.
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Structural Timber Poles

Timber poles are utilised in structural construction to provide support for gravity loads and resistance against lateral forces. Not only serving a structural function, timber poles provide many aesthetic benefits, with their use in construction often complementing architectural designs aimed at harmonisation with the natural environment.
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Framing

Since people began building simple shelters, wooden framing has played an important role in shaping structures of many kinds. One of the most popular types of wooden framing is known as lightweight timber construction.
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Flooring

The warmth, strength and natural beauty of timber flooring is enduringly popular in a wide variety of domestic, commercial and industrial applications.

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