April 2, 2010, Newsletter Issue #24: Janka Hardness Test

Tip of the Week

Using the original Brinell test to measure the hardness of metal, Janka developed a similar method to specifically measure the hardness of wood. It’s a standard still used today. In Janka’s test, the force expressed to press a 11.28 mm-diameter steel ball into the wood being tested into a depth of half the ball's diameter give you the result of the wood’s hardness level.

Be aware that different countries have alternate ways of noting the results. The US measures in “pounds-force.” Australia uses newtons (N) or kilonewtons (kN). And in Sweden, the results are marked in “kilogram-force” (kgf). Alternately, you may find standardized results, where the measurement is noted in “Janka,” such as “250 Janka.”

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