Commercial names:

Zingana (France, Gabon); zebrawood (UK, USA); allene, ele, amouk (Cameroon).


West Africa, Gabon and Cameroon Republic.

General description:

The heartwood is a light golden-yellow with narrow streaks of dark brown to almost black, which gives a quartered surface and a zebra-stripe appearance. The grain is interlocked or wavy and produces alternating hard and soft grained material, which makes the timber difficult to work. Zebrano has a coarse texture and a lustrous surface. The weight is 740 kg.m3 (46  1b/ft3) and the specific gravity is .74.

Mechanical properties:

This timber is hard, heavy and stable and it is mainly used for decorative purposes due to its nature; where strength and mechanical properties are unimportant.


The material is difficult to dry and requires care in order to avoid surface checking, splitting and distortion. There is small movement in service.

Working properties:

The timber works fairly well with both hand and machine tools, but it is very difficult to get a good finish from machines due to the alternative nature of the grain. A belt sander usually helps to provide a smooth finish for this timber. Also, gluing is satisfactory with care and it finishes well once filled.


Zebrano is a non-durable timber as it is liable to attack by insects and is resistant to preservative treatment.


The main use for Zebrano is decorative veneers for small cabinetworks, flush doors, cross bandings or inlay bandings, fancy goods, marquetry and paneling. However, bundles of this veneer tend to buckle unless kept under weights. Also, this timber is used by turners and carvers for decorative work.