Meranti Wood vs Mahogany | Uses, Workability and Wood Color

Mahogany wood is more durable, stable, and stronger than Meranti wood. Mahogany is known to be a premium expensive hardwood. Meranti is moderately durable wood good for furniture.

Meranti wood (Shorea spp.)

Meranti is medium density hardwood, It gives a pale pink to brown and reddish-brown appearance. Wood is versatile wood used for many purposes, But famous for general constriction and making quality plywood.

All Types of Meranti are the wood preferred for indoor application. Treated wood can be used for outdoor use, it works better than untreated wood.

Mainly there are five types of Meranti: Light Red Meranti, Dark Red Meranti, White Meranti, Yellow Meranti, and Balau. They are native to Southeast Asia.

Mahogany wood (Swietenia)

Mahogany is extremely attractive, rich-colored, durable, and stable hardwood, known for making quality furniture. It gives a great rich reddish-brown appearance. Mahogany is naturally durable and rot-resistant hardwood. It is known for its toughness. 

Wood can be used for interior and exterior applications. Its many great properties make it different from other hardwoods.

There are three types of mahogany, Which are as follows: Honduras mahogany (Swietenia humilis), bigleaf mahogany (Swietenia macrophylla), and American mahogany (Swietenia mahagoni).  

The color, hardness, and Elastic Modulus, strength of each species differ from each other. They are used on the basis of their properties.

Mahogany is native to the Caribbean and South American lowland tropical or subtropical forests. 

#Meranti WoodMahogany wood
Scientific Name:Shorea spp.Swietenia
Tree Height:65-130 ft (20-40 m) tall, 3-6 ft (1-2 m) trunk diameter100-130 ft (30-40 m) tall, 3-5 ft (1-1.5 m) trunk diameter
Rot-resistant:Little or no rot-resistantExtremely Rot-Resistant
Workability:Usually easy to workEasy to work
Wood types:HardwoodHardwood
Uses:Plywood, interior furniture, general construction, veneer, and boatbuilding.Veneer, plywood, turned items, furniture, boatbuilding, and interior trim.
Difference between Meranti Wood vs Mahogany

Meranti Wood vs Mahogany Uses

Meranti wood Uses


Meranti wood is widely used for plywood and veneer sheets. The peeling and gluing properties of meranti wood are very good. The nail and screw holding properties are also better for plywood.

General Construction

Meranti wood has good density and strength to make it an excellent choice in construction.

Moldings and Trim

Meranti can be trimmed easily as compared to Mahogany. Therefore, Meranti can be a good choice for molding and trim.

Mahogany wood Uses


Choosing wood for flooring is not as easy as furniture. Soft and unstable wood is responsible for dents and shrinkage. Mahogany wood provides outstanding coloring and durability.

Mahogany Flooring does not require much care. Cleaning once a week is enough. To maintain durability, avoid using chemical-based liquids for cleaning.


Not all hardwoods are strong and stable enough for boat building. The wrong choice of wood causes the wood to shrink over time and water can damage the boat.

Mahogany is the most preferred wood for making boats and boat parts. Genuine mahogany( Honduran Mahogany, Mexican Mahogany, and Cuban Mahogany ) has excellent weather and moisture resistant properties, which perform very well even in outdoor environments.

Apart from durability and toughness, mahogany is known for its excellent natural rich color. Mahogany has all these qualities.


Mahogany wood is known for making durable and beautiful kitchen cabinets. It is rot-resistant and stable wood. Which works well in moisture. Older, wild-grown trees tend to produce heavier and more durable lumber. 

Common uses

Mahogany and Meranti woods are widely used for making quality furniture. Woods have great shock-resistant properties. Meranti and mahogany are expensive wood, So their veneer sheets have been used extensively. The price of the veneers sheet is less than solid wood.

Meranti Wood vs Mahogany Workability 

Working with Meranti wood

Meranti is hardwood, but it is medium-density. It can be easily worked with hand and machine tools. It holds glue, nail, and screw well. 

White Meranti, which is also known as Philippine Mahogany, contains high silica. Due to this, it blunts the blade during cutting. 

Some species of meranti have irregular and interlocked grain patterns which can present problems during wood planing. But Glues, stains, and finishes well.

Working with Mahogany wood

Generally mahogany is easy to work with hand and machine tools. Sometimes there may be a problem of tearout due to interlocking and irregular grain in the wood.

Santos Mahogany is the hardest Mahogany, its Janka hardness is 2,400 lbf (10,680 N). Its density is very high and there are interlocking grains. When working with Santos Mahogany, it is common to see a blunting effect on cutting edges.


Meranti and Mahogany have been reported as a sensitizer. Usually, the most common reactions simply include eye and skin irritation.

Any wood dust can be harmful to asthmatic or heart patients. Sometimes wood dust becomes more of a problem for a patient with sensitive skin. Therefore, be careful while working on wood.

Are Meranti and Mahogany Durable?

Meranti wood

Meranti is moderately-durable to non-durable wood. Wood is decay-resistant but has moderate to poor insect/borer resistance.

In general, Meranti wood is considered suitable for indoor use. Dark Meranti is more durable and can be good for outdoor use, It performs well outside and in weather. Dark meranti is more commonly used for decking and constriction.

Mahogany wood

Mahogany is extremely durable and robust hardwood. Wood has a great combination of strength and beauty. Due to this quality, mahogany is considered a suitable wood for all types of furniture and wood projects.

Older, wild-grown trees tend to produce richer, good quality, and more durable lumber, while plantation-grown stock can be paler in color, lighter in weight, and less durable.

Wood Color/Grain

Meranti wood Grain

The heartwood of meranti wood is dark reddish or purplish brown with white resin streaks present and the sapwood ranges from white to light reddish-brown.

Meranti wood has straight grains, But sometimes there may also be wavy or interlocked grain with a coarse, open texture and low natural luster

Mahogany wood Grain

The heartwood of mahogany wood is pale pinkish brown to a darker reddish-brown and softwood is yellowish-white to pale brown. Mahogany wood color tends to darken with age.

Generally mahogany wood has straight grains, But sometimes there may also be wavy or interlocked grain. Mahogany wood contains good natural luster. Which protects the wood from external elements.