Scientific Name: Cordia dodecandra
Also known as: Siricote, Ciricote, Zircote, Ziracote
Origin: Very limited growing region within Southern Mexico, Guatemala and Belize
Traditional Uses: Instruments; Fine Furniture; Cabinetry; Inlays; Turnery; Flooring; Gunstocks


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ZiricoteZiricote is the most dramatic member of the Cordia genus and stands apart from other exotic woods due to it’s unique grain lines that frequently depict spider webbing, marbled swirls, cloud bursts, mountains, valleys and other captivating patterns. The heartwood is reddish brown with irregular chocolate or black streaks that tend to form abstract art within itself. These color tones contrast nicely with the sapwood which ranges from creamy vanilla to golden tan. Artisan craftsmen are fond of incorporating this sapwood into their projects to maximize the final visual impact. It is a stunning combination indeed!

With a density higher than rosewood, Ziricote turns very well. It is able to take a very smooth finish and a high polish. Ziricote is slightly brittle but also known as a good steam bending candidate and is proven to hold nails and screws well. This exotic hardwood is easy to work by hand or machine and is stable in use. Ziricote wood has a medium to fine texture and a straight to slightly interlocking grain. It has a tendency to develop end and surface checks during drying, but is stable afterwards. Quartersawn surfaces will sometimes display ray or flake patterns similar to Hard Maple. The highly figured spider web grain is similar to what can be found in Brazilian Rosewood only more complex. Surface has a natural waxy appearance and takes on a satin finish with simple sanding.

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Tone Qualities: Well known as a tonewood, Ziricote is highly esteemed for instrument making. Many Luthiers repeatedly comment that Ziricote provides and experience identical to the finest rosewood. Others take note of its Ebony-like crispness. One guitarist described his experience as “not quite as deep as EIR, but with a sharper attack and a bit more note separation”. Whatever your project is, if it is instrument related, then exotic Ziricote should certainly be on your short list!


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Specific Gravity: 0.85 to .97
Hardness: 2200 Janka
Density: 56 pcf
Tangential Movement: 7.40%
Radial Movement: 4.00%
Volumetric Shrinkage: 11.60%
Durability: Very Good

Fine Examples of Ziricote Creations: Note: links may take you to 3rd party Website