Difference between Pine Wood and Teak Wood

Key difference: Pines are considered to be a softwood, light weight and less expensive. Due to its light weight, pine is quite popular for bedroom furniture, such as wardrobes, beds, as it is much easier to move this furniture around. Teak wood is another type of hardwood. It is essentially sourced from the Tectona grandis tree species, which is native to south and southeast Asia, mainly India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Burma. As a wood, teak has a smooth grain and texture. It has a yellowish brown hue, which may mature overtime to a silvery-grey finish. In fact, teak is famous for its high oil content, high tensile strength and tight grain.

Wood is mainly classified into two categories: hardwood and softwood. Many people consider that hardwood is named such because it is harder and denser than softwood. This is true often enough, but not all the time. Take for example the balsa wood, which is soft, light and less dense than most other woods, but is classified as a hardwood. The classification of the wood is not actually done on the basis of weight or density; rather it is done on the basis of plant reproduction.

Pines are considered to be a softwood, light weight and less expensive. Due to its light weight, pine is quite popular for bedroom furniture, such as wardrobes, beds, as it is much easier to move this furniture around.

Softwoods generally are wood from a gymnosperm tree. A gymnosperm is a type of tree that has seed that have no covering and tend to fall to the ground. Gymnosperms reproduce by forming cones which emit pollen to be spread by the wind to other trees. Most softwood tends to come from conifers like pines, firs and spruces. Conifers are also commonly called evergreens because their leaves tend to stay green and do not fall to the ground in cycles. Some famous softwood trees are pine, redwood, fir, cedar, and larch.

Pine is also known to be stiff and sturdy and resistant to shock, but it does wear down over time, especially when exposed to heavy use. It has a more rustic look and tends to show off natural characteristics like knots and other flaws. Hence, it is much better for an antique look.  However, pine will always be smooth to touch.

Pine is also more porous; hence it absorbs paints well.  However, pine does not absorb stains evenly, so a natural look or painted look is a better option for pine.

Difference varieties of pine, include yellow pine, which may have a yellow or red color, as well as a fairly deep grain; white pine tends to be pale with a barely visible grain; and red pine, which is the darkest of the pines and has the heaviest grain.

Teak wood on the other hand is a type of hard wood. Hardwood is the wood that comes from an angiosperm tree. This is a type of tree that has seeds that are enclosed, be it in pods, a shell, a covering or in a fruit. For example, apples or nuts and seeds like acorns and walnuts. These types of seeds allow birds and insects to be attracted to the flowers of the tree and be able to carry the pollen to other trees. This is also the reason why hardwood trees are not often bunched together but are spaced apart and often have other trees in-between them.

Most hardwood trees are also deciduous is nature. A deciduous tree is a tree that loses its leaves annually. Hardwood trees are also slower to grow, taking their own time. Due to this, most hardwood is dense. This is also the reason that hardwood is expensive, as it takes longer to grow. Some famous hardwoods include maple, balsa, oak, elm, mahogany, and sycamore.

Teak wood is essentially sourced from the Tectona grandis tree species, which is native to south and southeast Asia, mainly India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Burma. However, due to the high demand of teak wood, the Tectona grandis is also grown on plantations in Africa and the Caribbean. Still, Burma accounts for almost one third of the teak in the world, hence teakwood is also at times referred to as Burmese Teak. Regionally, teakwood is known as 'Segun' in Bengali and as ‘Sagwan’ in most of India.

As a wood, teak has a smooth grain and texture. It has a yellowish brown hue, which may mature overtime to a silvery-grey finish. In fact, teak is famous for its high oil content, high tensile strength and tight grain. Due to the high oil content, teak is known to durable even when it is not treated with oil or varnish. It is due to this oil content that teakwood has a leather-like smell when it is freshly milled. Teak is also resistant to timber termite and other pests. It also has a low shrinkage ratio, which means that the wood can be used in areas with high or fluctuating moisture content. However, teak contains silica in the wood, which may lead to severe blunting on edged tools. Due to this only the most experience woodworkers use teak.

Teak is often used to make furniture, especially countertops, as well as indoor flooring, veneer, carving, turnings, and other small wood projects, such as cutting boards. Teak is also commonly used to make doors, window frames, and columns and beams.

Furthermore, because of its high oil content, it is also often used to make outdoor furniture, as the wood’s natural oils make it resistant to water, as well as to rot, fungi and mildew. This has also allowed teak to be used for boat building, boat decks, etc.

As a hardwood, teak is sourced from slow growing trees. The high quality teak is sourced from trees are that are at least 50 years old. The teakwood can be sourced from trees that are younger in age, but this timber in not considered to be of a high quality.

Image Courtesy: made-in-china.com, eurasian.com

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