Janka Hardness Test Explained

The Janka Hardness Rating system is the flooring industry standard for comparing the the hardness of different woods. The system is easy to understand. It measures the force required to embed an 11.28 mm (0.444 in) steel ball into wood to half the ball's diameter. The only confusion with the Janka Hardness Test system is that it is measured in different countries in different units. In the United States, the measurement is in pounds-force (lbf), in Sweden it is in kilograms-force (kgf), and in Australia, either in newtons (N) or kilonewtons (kN). For the sake of consistency all Janka Hardness figures in this site are in pounds force. Below and on the next page is a list of the Janka Hardnesses for many hardwood found in the world starting with the hardest woods and descending to the softest woods.

Lignum vitae 4500
Patagonian Rosewood/Brazilian Tiger Mahogany 3840
Brazilian Ebony 3692
IpĂȘ / "Brazilian Walnut" / Lapacho 3684
African Pearlwood / Moabi 3680
Bolivian Cherry 3650
Lapacho 3640
Cumaru / "Brazilian Teak" 3540
Ebony 3220
Brazilian Redwood 3190
Red Mahogany, Turpentine 2697
"Southern Chestnut" 2670
Spotted Gum 2473
Brazilian Cherry / Jatoba 2350
Mesquite 2345
"Golden Teak" 2330 / Brushbox 2135

Tags: Janka Hardness Rating, Janka Hardness explained, units of Janka, hardest woods

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