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Teak Furniture has a high reputation amongst manufactures

Teak furniture has a high reputation amongst manufactures and buyers because of the qualities of the material - teak wood. Teak (tectona also known locally as jati) offers a number of features that make it the leading choice for buyers looking for great value from their furniture purchase. Teak furniture is:

  • Durable
  • Beautiful
  • Eco Friendly
Let's have a look at what makes teak furniture so good

Teak Furniture is Durable

Teak wood is an extremely dense & course grained hard wood, high in natural oils. This dense grain texture makes the wood highly resistant to swelling, shrinkage, rotting, and warping. The high oil content means that it has an inbuilt preservative, giving the wood a long life, especially in the outdoors. The course texture comes from the high amount of silica in the wood, and causes rapid blunting of cutting edges.

This means teak furniture is the first choice for buyers seeking furniture that is strong, resistant to sun, rain, wind or snow, and will last a long time. The high oil content makes it a natural insect repellant, giving the timber a high resistance to attack by termites or other wood boring insects.

Furniture made from other woods such as Cedar and Cypress are softer than Teak, and are more fragile, making them not as strong or as durable, or able to live up to the demands of modern furniture . Furniture made from Oak, Pine & Maple are also lightweight and do not have the natural preservatives of teak, meaning they split and rot easily.

Teak is the wood they use on sailing ships, because it resists the weather. Teak furniture in the outdoors lasts for decades.

Teak Furniture is Beautiful

Teak has a warm yellow honey color, and is very smooth to the touch. It does not splinter, and has a faint aromatic smell, similar to leather. The wood grain is strait, even in texture, and has few knots. Freshly cut teak has an oily feel due to the high oil content. Because natural teak wood is so beautiful, we actively try to maintain the beauty of the wood in our teak furniture, by using a natural wax finish, rather than staining the wood.

A natural wax finish preserves the color of the wood, and gives our furniture a distinctive warm, natural color and feel. We think this is important to the look of our teak furniture. This natural teak wood color also helps our furniture keep its modern and distinctive look. When teak wood is stained to a darker color, it has to be stained forever.

Teak Furniture is Eco Friendly

Teak does not come from tropical rain forests. In fact, teak cannot grow in rainforests as its needs a drier climate to grow. The teak we use comes from government controlled and run plantations in Java. The Indonesian government agency responsible for controlling teak plantation is PT Perum Perhutani.

These plantations were originally created by the Dutch 200 years ago in Indonesia. They planted farms of teak to be used for harvesting. These plantations represent carefully controlled sustained -yield sources for teak. PT Perum Perhutani operate a strict policy regulating the number and size of trees that can be felled, as operate a well organized replanting program to maintain the productivity and sustainability of the forests for future generations.

The teak plantations provide a high value crop that is the major source of income for the local people, and the associated timber product industries provides a regular source of local employment.

A fully mature teak tree will attain a height of about 40m, and will have a diameter of about 1 to 2m. It takes about 50 to 60 years for a tree to grow and mature.

These teak farms are the major source for teak today, and are the source of all the teak we use in our furniture. We do not use trees from natural forests to produce our teak furniture.

Ok. So what are the drawbacks to using teak in furniture?

Teak has a wide range of quality, and buyers need to be careful that only the best wood is used in their teak furniture. Do not be fooled by cheap prices. If the price is cheap, it means you are buying cheap quality teak, and that's not good.

Teak Furniture quality is affected by 2 things:

The Cut

Teak wood cut closer to the heart of the tree has an even grain and shape. This also means that the tree used was a harvested tree, cut when the tree was mature enough to yield good wood. The length of the wood is longer and straighter. Teak furniture made from this wood is of high quality.

Wood cut closer to the outside of the tree, or cut from a tree of small diameter (younger) has a lot more growth rings and knots. Wood cut in this way has a much more uneven texture, length, and color. Teak furniture made from this type of wood has many more live knots, is uneven, has a lot more waves in the wood, and more sap lines. This type of wood is inferior in quality.

The Moisture Content

Not only does the age of the tree, and where the wood was cut from, affect the quality of the wood, but the moisture content of the wood also affects the quality of teak furniture.

Freshly felled teak has a moisture content of about 40%. Left to dry for a few weeks and the moisture content drops to about 25%. If you live in the tropics, than teak furniture in your house with this % of moisture is no problem, as the air is humid and the furniture will not dry out.

But, once your teak furniture is exported to drier climates like the USA, Europe, the Middle East, and Australia, the furniture dries out and shrinks and warps, because the moisture content of the wood is higher than the air. Basically, the furniture cracks and splits.

To overcome this, the % moisture content in the wood needs to be reduced from 25% to 12-15%. This is achieved by putting the wood into drying ovens for 2-3 weeks to reduce the moisture content down. Once the moisture content is low, we can then use the wood to manufacture.

Buyers need to make sure they purchase teak furniture from reputable manufacturers and shops that use teak wood that is kiln-dried. We use a moisture meter to test the wood we use before we manufacture. Many places do not. To avoid your teak furniture cracking, always ask the manufacturer or shop to test the wood, with a moisture meter. If they don't have a meter, or wont test it, than stay away! Find another supplier.

The other thing to remember about teak wood that has not been kiln dried, is that it is cheaper, as the extra cost of the kiln dried process has not been added in. This is why you can sometimes see cheaper teak furniture around. Again, if it looks too good to be true, it probably is.

But besides this moisture issue, which is easily overcome, teak furniture offers great value for money, is durable, long lasting, and looks great indoors and outdoors.

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