Ever wondered about the hardest and softest woods in the world? As architects, we’re all pretty familiar with the softest: Balsa. Its material qualities are what make it so attractive to make models. But what about the the strongest wood in the world? Ever pondered just how many pounds or kilos of force they can withstand?
Which wood can stand up to scratches, and which is best for subtler, softer lines? Surely, there’s “soft” and “hardwood,” but how hard is hard? Luckily, there’s a scale for these things: the Janka scale of hardness. It measures the force needed to embed a steel ball halfway through a sample of wood. This chart from Alan’s Factory Outlet ranks common woods favored by architects in order of their Janka rating, and lists the many different jobs each type of wood is used for. When choosing wood for your next project, consider the many different choices for flooring, permanent furniture, and exteriors to find the best and most appropriate one!