(Eucalyptus coolabah)


Also known as: Coolibah

Coolabah trees can be found near just about any waterway on the Highlands as long as the area floods at some time. They grow to around 20 metres tall with trunks to around 1 metre diameter with a flaky, box like bark persisting to the larger branches. The timber is used for railway sleepers and occasionally for fencing.
Coolabah burls are popular with woodturners but there are 2 distinct types of burl to watch out for. The most common around the Highlands is the 'resin burl' as pictured at right and was used to make the platter and box pictured below. The grain in resin burls generally follows the alignment of the main trunk and has resin veins through it that facilitate rot.
The better burl to chase is the 'Birdseye burl'. It's grain runs very tightly in every direction and is usually solid right through. They can be identified by the compact, knobbly bark as pictured here on a specimen in the Aramac region.
Got a pleasant surprise recently when a mate dropped these burls off for me - best birdseye Coolibah burls I have seen from our region but he's keeping the location he found them a secret!
One of the bowls I turned from them is pictured below . . .
A nice little log salvaged from a re-cleared cropping paddock near Capella. The entire log has fiddleback figure right through it.
Coolabah timber is hard and heavy and tends to crack readily while drying. The timber, like most eucalypts, is short grained and dusty to work with but it sands OK and takes a finish well. The items pictured were all made from a locally harvested resin burl and finished with Danish Oil. 


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