The structure of wood

A little science doesn’t hurt from time to time:

Wood is essentially made up of plant cells. These cells are covered by a wall (called pectocellulose wall) which forms the wood fibers. These fibers form bundles of resistant cells, which ensure the rigidity and mechanical resistance of the wood.

To simplify things, we can imagine a trunk as a pack of straws stuck together, hollow, with the sap running through them, going from the ground to the sky. These “straws” represent the fibers of the wood, all going in the same direction and ensuring the rigidity and resistance of the wood.

This is made up mainly of organic matter (cellulose and lignin) and a small percentage (1 to 1.5%) of mineral elements. It also contains a variable amount of humidity.

  • Cellulose (approximately 50%)
  • Lignin (20-30%)
  • Hemicellulose (15-25%)
  • Other organic substances: polysaccharides, pentosans, hexosans, resins, tannins, dyes, waxes, alkaloids, volatile aromatic compounds, etc.

These are fibers that create patterns in the wood and are called graining.

How the wood is cut.

The trunk of a tree is generally cut into more or less thick plates. Depending on what we want to do with it, depending on the size of the trunk and its structure, we can do it from different angles.

With each cut, the grain of the wood takes shape differently depending on the cutting direction.

We choose our wooden tray according to what we need to do: depending on the pattern and the desired resistance.

There are therefore many ways to debit a trunk, each having a different name but above all a different result.

For the same trunk, we can have very different designs. As you can see, depending on the cut of the wood, the pattern turns out differently.