Uses: Used for boat building, canoes, oars, tillers; deck beams and frames. Extensively used for cabinetmaking and furniture, chair making, agricultural implements, vehicle bodies, wheelwrighting, bentwork, fancy turnery and laminated articles. Corestock and plywood manufacture, and decorative veneers for furniture, panelling and marquetry. Ash also takes treatment as hardwood (silver grey) and in veneer form, the olive ash figure is highly decorative, especially in stumpwood and burr form.
General Description: European Ash's heartwood is cream to pale tan coloured. In some logs, a dark brown to black heartwood is found which is strong and sound and sold as olive ash. The wood is tough, flexible and straight grained. The texture is coarse but even. The weight varies between 510-830 kg/m³ (32-51 lb/ft³), average 710 kg/m³ (44 lb/ft³); specific gravity .71.
This tough, heavy, dense timber is fairly split resistant and has excellent steam bending properties, and with low stiffness and medium resistance to crushing and shock loads.
European Ash dries fairly rapidly and needs care to avoid surface checking and splitting, but this responds well to reconditioning kiln treatment; medium movement in service.
The timber is non-durable and perishable. It is susceptible to insect attack by both powder post and common furniture beetle. The heartwood is moderately resistant to preservative treatment but back heartwood is resistant.
Family Name: Oleaceae
Latin Name: Fraxinus excelsior
Distribution: Grows throughout Europe, North Africa and Western Asia.
Also known as: English, French, Polish, Slavonian, etc according to origin.