Sapele, Figured

Also known as: Sapele Mahogany

Botanical Name: Entandrophragma cylindricum

Origin: West, Central and East Africa

Description: Millions upon millions of square metres of Sapele veneer have been produced over many years and this versatile species has been used for just about everything possible. There is a steady demand for both crown and straight-grain material so the logs are frequently cut on the stay-log machine or they may be quartered. The most sought after will be clean and free of pips, with a clear red-pink colour and showing a clearly defined stripe. Lower grade material is frequently used for backing. Some logs may be figured to varying degrees, showing anything from a mottle to, in rare examples, almost a fiddleback. When the growth of the tree has progressed in a very particular manner, which can usually be detected from the surface of the log before slicing, then it will be rotary-cut to produce Pommele figured veneer which has a beautiful “bubbly” or “quilted” appearance.

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