Mukulungu - hard and durable

Mukulungu belongs to a group of African woods, which are characterized by enormous hardness and durability and also by a decorative look. It is also related to the well-known Massaranduba and has only slightly lower hardness properties. Read more about Mukulungu in this post.

Technical values

Reading Descriptionvalue
densityapprox. 0.91 g / cm³ dry, fresh approx. 1.200 kg / m³
Compressive strengthapprox. 83 N / mm²
flexural strengthapprox. 150 N / mm²

Other names and relatives

To many known hardwoods Mukulungu has a very close relationship - such as Massaranduba or Moabi wood. Mukulungu is also closely related to the macore. The Malaysian Bitis wood is a very similar wood and has almost identical properties. The highest strength among all woods of the group has Massaranduba.

Alternative names

Mukulungu is also common among many other names, the most commonly mentioned alternative name is Afri-Kulu. But you can hear it as well

  • Mukungolo
  • Autracon
  • Elanzok or
  • Kolo

The name in DIN is MUK.



The structure is similar to Macoré. The pores are only weakly visible and small in number, the rays are very noticeable in Mukulungu. Also typical are the frequently occurring gloss stripes.


The sapwood has a pale yellowish color, but unlike other African woods, it can also have a slightly pink tint. The heartwood is markedly reddish, either purple-brown or typically red-brown. It darkens strongly.


Mukulungu is, like all woods of the group, a very heavy and very hard wood. It clearly outclasses all of our native wood species, such as oak wood in all strength values. Machining is difficult due to the high hardness, fine silicic acid deposits are an additional processing obstacle and require special tools (stellitized tool).

Shrinkage and drying

The drying must - as with all very hard woods - be done very carefully. The shrinkage is in the middle range, but improper drying can always lead to cracks.


Mukulungu is highly weather resistant and highly resistant to fungal and insect attack. In addition, it is also very durable, like all woods of this group. When weathered, however, it always leads to the formation of a gray-brownish patina, which is not always desired.


The use as solid wood can be done indoors and outdoors, even for heavily loaded structures. Mukulungu is also used in staircase construction and for doors and windows. Parquet production is possible, it then creates a highly resilient and abrasion-resistant parquet. The use as a veneer wood is rare, but in principle possible if the wood was previously adequately damped.


Mukulungu comes from West Africa. Almost exclusive distribution areas are the Congo and Cameroon, in other West African countries, it is virtually unrepresented.

Here you will find an overview of the most important types of wood worldwide. An overview of the most important tropical wood species, such as Mukulungu, can be found here.

Tips & Tricks

Pay attention to all the woods of this group on the highly irritating abrasive dust and protect yourself necessarily by high cleanliness, suitable extraction systems and personal protective equipment. In addition, make sure that alkaline glues, mortar or ferrous metals often discolour the wood unattractive.

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