keywords: Teak, compressive strength, flexural strength, fatigue, moisture content
This study examined some mechanical properties of seasoned and unseasoned teak using wood samples from the core of 25-30 years old freshly fallen teak tree. This was with a view to establishing the effect of various seasoning methods on these engineering properties of the teak wood. Three seasoning methods were studied; these are oven-seasoning, air-oven-seasoning and air seasoning methods. All the seasoned specimens were monitored during the seasoning process until the equilibrium moisture content (EMC) was between 12-15%. The seasoned and unseasoned specimens were subjected to compression, flexural and hardness tests and each test was replicated three times. Another set of specimens was subjected to fatigue test at three stress levels: 60, 70, and 80% ultimate strength. The data obtained were subjected to appropriate statistical and graphical analyses. The results showed that, generally, oven-seasoned teak wood possesses the highest mechanical strength followed by the oven-air seasoned, air-seasoned and unseasoned teak in that order. The study concluded that seasoning significantly influences the mechanical properties of teak and the shorter the time spent for seasoning to attain a given equilibrium moisture content, the stronger the teak becomes.