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The relationship between bending and tension strength of Irish and UK spruce and pine

Gil-Moreno, David; Ridley-Ellis, Dan; O'Ceallaigh, Conan; Harte, Annette M


David Gil-Moreno

Conan O'Ceallaigh

Annette M Harte


The correct characterisation of wood properties is fundamental for the best utilisation of resources. In Europe, grading is defined by strength classes that are determined based on either bending or tension tests. The European standards give equations to estimate characteristic strength in tension from characteristic strength in bending, and vice versa depending on which was tested. These equations are applied to all softwoods. The aim of this paper is to empirically determine the relationship between bending and tension strength properties using two conifer species grown in Ireland and the UK. The results show that the relationships change with species. The standard conversion underestimates, importantly, the performance of spruce for tension loads calculated for the most common bending strength class for Ireland and the UK, C16. The opposite occurs on the reverse conversion. Additionally, the study includes published data from continental Europe, to establish a new conversion that uses timber from a broader range of grades, and that adjusts the tension performance of Irish and UK spruce obtained from bending strength classes, ensuring safe values for design

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jan 18, 2022
Online Publication Date Feb 7, 2022
Publication Date 2022-06
Deposit Date Feb 7, 2022
Publicly Available Date Feb 7, 2022
Journal European Journal of Wood and Wood Products
Print ISSN 0018-3768
Publisher Springer
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 80
Pages 585-596
Public URL
Publisher URL


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