The heart wood is a rich dark brown to purplish-black, mostly straight grained, but with wavy or curly grain occasionally present. The texture is rather coarse.
This is tough, hard timber of medium density, with moderate bending and crushing strengths, and low stiffness. It has good steam bending classification.
Dries rather slowly with a tendency to honeycomb andrequires cares to avoid checking and degradation. There is small movement in service.
Work with hand or machine toolswithout difficulty with moderate blunting effect on cutting edges. Hold nails and screw well, glues satisfactory and polishes to a high finish.
Very durable. Sapwood liable to attack by powder post beetle. The heartwood is resistant to preservative treatment and biodegradation.
In USA it is the standard timber for riffle buts and gunstocks. It is extensively used for high quality furniture, cabinet making and interior joinery, boat building, musical instruments, clockcases, turnery and carving. A major timber in plywood manufacture and sliced for panelling, cabinet veneers and decorative veneers for all kind in the form of stump wood, crotches, burrs, burls etc.