JOURNAL OF OIL PALM RESEARCH (SPECIAL ISSUE - APRIL 2006)
ournal of Oil Palm Research (pecial ssue - April
06), p. 114-121
AN INVESTIGATION ON THE MECHANICAL
PROPERTIES OF TRUNKS OF PALM OIL TREES
FOR THE FURNITURE INDUSTRY
THANATE RATANAWILAI*; TANONG CHUMTHONG* and SITTIPON KIRDKONG*
Keywords: palm oil wood, rubberwood, teak, mechanical property, furniture.
Date received: 18 November 2005; Sent for revision: 26 December 2005; Received in final form: 17 January 2006; Accepted: 13 February 2006.
High quality wood furniture requires several factors, such as properties of woods, product design, production
process and control, which must be considered. Mechanical properties are considered to be some of the most
important factors at the stages of product design and material selection. A comparison of mechanical properties
between palm oil wood, rubberwood and teak, which are widely used in the furniture industry, is the objective
of this study. The base, middle and top samples were cut from palm oil trunks and seven parameters were
measured using standard methods and procedures. They included specific gravity, moisture content, bending
stress, tensile stress perpendicular-to-grain, hardness, compressive stress parallel-to-grain, and impact stress.
The overall results showed that the mechanical properties of palm oil trunk were approximately two times
lower than those of teak and rubberwood. Different portions of the palm oil trunk also gave different mechanical
properties. It was found that the base of the palm oil trunk gave the lowest modulus of elasticity than the top
portion but provided higher hardness than the others. Hence, this study provides essential information on the
suitability of palm oil wood for applications in the furniture industry.
* Department of Industrial Engineering,
Faculty of Engineering,
Prince of Songkhla University, Hatyai, 90112, Songkhla, Thailand.
Over the years, wood has been utilized for homes
and other structures, such as furnitu