wenge vs panga panga
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WENGE VS PANGA PANGA
The woods wenge (Millettia laurentii) and panga panga (Millettia stuhlmannii) are very closely related and are very similar in appearance, to the point of it being easy to confuse the two. They are somewhat distinguishable due to the fact that the wenge usually presents a considerably wider grain pattern on flat cut surfaces and the tighter grain of panga panga can also sometimes be seen in the end grain closeups. Note that this is not infallible.
It also seems that sometimes the confluent parenchyma bands in panga panga are clearly thinner and tighter than those in wenge (that's somewhat the same as saying that the face grain pattern is tighter on panga panga).
I have not shown any quartersawn pics in this discussion but they are generally indistinguishable although you might see a slightly tighter grain lines in panga panga.
Here are two sets of pics, with wenge on the left and panga panga on the right. Each composite pic shows the following:
- first row, two flat cut closeups, 2" wide, shown here at 100%
- second row, a single flat cut closeup, 4" wide, shown here at 100%
- third row, a single flat closeup, 4" wide, shown here at 100%
- forth row, a single end grain closeup, 1" wide, shown here at 400%
- fifth row, a single end grain closeup, 1" wide, shown here at 400%
high magnification of typical wenge and typical panga pange showing
that the pores and confluent bands are both larger in wenge