Timber in general refers to wood. It can be wood that is still intact on unfelled trees or wood that has been harvested for commercial lumber.
The words timber and lumber are often used interchangeably and practically mean the same thing.
Timber is among the most used natural materials in the world. Wood is used for everything from construction to flooring, furniture, firewood, cooking, interior, boatbuilding, and more. In this article, we will discuss many crucial benefits and uses of timber in detail.
Embracing Nature: The Numerous Benefits of Timber
Timber is usually a strong and robust material that is considered suitable for many applications thanks to its wide range of benefits such as:
Beautiful: One of the best things about wood is that it’s a naturally beautiful product that will only enhance the appearance of the place where it is used. It can be seamlessly painted or stained to achieve whatever look you want.
Renewable: Unlike man-made materials, timber is a renewable product that can be produced as and how needed. Moreover, it grows all around the world and is available in plenty. Many softwood species have a very fast growth rate and are cheaper than other materials.
Eco-friendly: Timber is an environment-friendly product, as it is produced by nature and can be decomposed back to earth. Processing timber is also more eco-friendly and energy-efficient than other materials.
Human-friendly: Timber, being a natural product, is free from toxins and gives a pleasant feel to humans. Moreover, it helps save the environment by absorbing excess carbon from the air.
Easy to dry: Timber can be easily dried using air drying or kiln drying methods. Dried timber is much more strong and resistant to insects and weighs much less due to limited moisture content.
Easy to work with: Timber is strong but not too heavy to handle. It can be managed much easier than other materials like steel and iron. It is also easy to cut and shape. Building with timber is faster and simpler.
Recyclable: Unused or residue timber can be recycled or repurposed. Timber fibre and pieces, for instance, can be reused for making engineered wood products such as fiberboards.
Strong & Durable: Most wood types are naturally strong and have good resistance to moisture, weathering and insect attacks. However, not all timber is water resistant. As a durable material, wood can last decades without decay.
Cost-effective: Softwood timber is usually cheaper than many man-made materials and can be used in large construction applications to keep the cost in check.
Common Uses of Timber That Deserve Your Attention
Timber or wood has many uses, more than we can explain in one article. You can see wood everywhere around you, in buildings, vehicles, lamp posts, furniture, boats, railroad ties, picture frames, sports equipment, fuel, and more. Here are some of the major uses of timber:
1. Timber for Fuel
Before the introduction of modern fuel types like petrol and gas, timber used to be one of the major sources of fuel in both residential and commercial applications. Even now, timber as a fuel source is used in many applications, from heating homes (firewood) to heating water, and cooking food. Timber residue, broken pieces, dust, and even mica can be used to burn for fuel. Timber-based fuel is also used in many commercial applications.
2. Timber for Construction
Timber is an extremely good construction material and can be used for a wide range of building activities. Wood is used for building structures, walls, doors, floors, ceilings, windows, studs, rafters, supports, beams, dividers, and frames.
Timber-based engineered products such as plywood, MDF, and veneer panels are extensively used in the construction industry for making high-load beams, structural insulated panels, and custom or architectural wood mouldings.
3. Timber Furniture
One of the most common uses of wood is for the construction of beautiful and durable pieces of furniture, such as bed frames, chairs, couches, stools, garden furniture, cabinets, and more. Hardwoods are commonly used for furniture making because of their beautiful dark appearance, attractive grain patterns, and high density. Softwoods are also popular for furniture construction. They are cheaper and more easily available than hardwoods due to their fast growth rate. Some popular timber species for construction are pine, oak, teak, maple, redwood, cedar, and poplar.
Engineered wood products such as plywood, fibreboards and particle boards are also commonly used in the furniture-making industry.
4. Timber for Support
Because of its strong and high-density structure, timber is also commonly used for making high-quality beams to provide support for heavy loads, such as on railroad ties, docks, jetties, piers, and utility poles. Timber beams are also used in the construction of homes.
Landscaping refers to the use of empty land or areas outside a house or property to create gardens or other attractive structures to add to the overall appeal of the property. Trees and timber have always been a crucial part of landscaping. Timber can be used for building raised garden beds, fencing, outdoor decks, temporary walls, pergolas and similar landscaping structures. The benefits of using wood instead of other materials such as iron, plastic or steel for landscaping include low cost, low maintenance, and higher aesthetic appeal.
6. Paper & Pulp
Timber is the main war product for building paper and paper-based products. The wood used in the paper industry is called pulpwood, which is usually very soft and can be easily turned into wood pulp, which is then used for making paper.
Softwoods are preferred for paper pulp-making because of their longer cellulose fibres, which make for stronger paper. Pine, spruce, bamboo, and subabul are some popular wood types used for paper making.
7. Boxes and Crates
Other than paper, wood is also used for making boxes, crates and other storage items. The process is nearly the same. Low-quality or cheap softwoods are mainly used for this purpose because of their easy availability. Boxes made from wood are strong and durable.
8. Wood Pallets
Timber is also used for making pallets, which are used for storing and transporting different products, especially heavy materials. Both hardwoods and softwoods are used for making pallets, but clean woods such as pine are favoured for building pallets for use in food and medical industries because this wood is clean and kiln-dried to remove germs.
9. Musical Instruments
Woods to be used in musical instruments are meticulously selected based on their acoustic properties, i.e. the sound they make upon striking. Wood is used in various musical instruments, such as tone woods in soundboards, woodwinds, keys in piano, strings, frame woods, bore woods, etc. Not all woods are alike. Softwoods like Sitka Spruce make an outstanding choice for tone wood. Ebony is used for making guitar bodies and piano keys for its unmatched beauty and elegance.
Wood is a hard and strong material but it is softer than metals such as iron, which means it can be carved more easily. Many wood types are better at carving than others. Limewood, for instance, is an excellent choice for carving projects. Hardwoods such as oak, walnut, and cherry are also often used for carving.
11. Tools & Kitchen Equipment
Some woods can bend more easily than others, which makes them a more suitable choice for making turned objects such as hockey sticks, bowls, tools, furniture, weapons, etc. Woods such as Beech, Ash and Oak respond well to steam bending, It is also used in building boats and ships.
12. Marine Applications
Wood has always been a popular choice for marine applications. Durable wood species that are resistant to water and decay make a wonderful choice for marine construction, including docks, bridge posts, support pillars, bridges, and underwater construction, as well as can be used for making strong boats and ships that float on water.
Among all the engineered wood products, plywood and veneer are two of the most popular applications of timber. Veneer refers to a thin layer of solid wood, which is polished and refined to make it smoother and more beautiful. It is generally attached to another panel made of solid wood or engineered wood to provide a decorative appearance or design. Mica is an example of a decorative veneer.
Buy High-quality Timber Online from White Knight Consulting Ltd
White Knight Consulting Ltd. is a premier timber manufacturer and supplier based in the UK that deals in as many as 40 varieties of softwoods and hardwoods. All our wood is sustainably sourced from different parts of the world.
We offer the best wholesale price for our timber, which is exported to many countries including Australia, UAE, Canada, Poland, Germany, Brazil, New Zealand, and others. Visit our website to explore our wide range of timber and order wood now in your preferred custom dimensions. Or call us now at +44 20 7193 5609 to consult with a woodworking specialist.