Sapelli is a great alternative to genuine mahogany, as it is similar in color and grain. The wood of this large and aboundant african tree has a distinct sap up to 7 cm thick, and the sapwood is pinkish-red when freshly cut, darkening to a rich red-brown. The texture is fine and there is a pronounced cedar-like scent. The wood has no distinct taste.
In bending strength, stiffness and resistance to shock loads, the wood is comparable to oak. It is much harder than mahogany. Its durability is moderately resistant.
Sapelli wood saws easily and cleanly with little waste and works fairly easily with hand and machine tools, though the interlocked grain may be troublesome in planing and moulding. It takes nails, screws and it glues well.