Species Spotlight: Blackbutt
Blackbutt or Eucalyptus pilularis is a common, fast-growing hardwood that can be grown in plantations for commercial use. This is a species well regarded by foresters for its easy regeneration and by builders because it’s hard, strong and tough but not particularly difficult to work. Blackbutt is an excellent home construction material providing provides good fire resistance when it has a thickness of greater than 18mm.
The species received the name Blackbutt because of the darkened (blackened) appearance of the buttress or butt following a bushfire.
Growth of Blackbutt
Blackbutt is grown in grassy coastal forests from the far south coast of New South Wales up to Maryborough in Queensland. The timber town of Blackbutt, Queensland and the nearby Blackbutt Range are both named after the species.
This is a moderate to largee tree, it can grow up to 60 metres high with a trunk diameter of one to two metres.
Uses of Blackbutt
Did you know that Blackbutt timber is used in the flooring of Parliament House, Canberra?
A popular construction timber seasoned blackbutt is a popular choice for internal and external flooring, cladding, lining and joining. As unseasoned sawn timber blackbutt is used in general house framing, fascia and barge boards. It is also used to manufacture structural plywood and hardboard.
Blackbutt timber has the strength required for sawn or round timber in wharf and bridge construction, railway sleepers, cross-arms, poles, piles and mining timbers.
The species is a beautiful decorative timber used to create high end indoor and outdoor furniture, parquetry and turnery.
Blackbutt will readily accept paint, stain and polish. However, high tannin and extractives content can result in staining of painted surfaces exposed to the weather. These extractives can also cause problems with some adhesives.
Technical properties of Blackbutt
Read more about the technical properties of Blackbutt on the species page or download 'Construction timbers in Queensland' which describes the properties of timbers used in the construction of Class 1 to Class 10 buildings (e.g. houses, carports, garages, greenhouses and sheds) in Queensland, as well as other purposes such as furniture, landscaping and outdoor structures (e.g. playgrounds, fences).
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