Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 30

Thread: Buying rough sawn lumber

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Akron Ohio
    Posts
    147

    Buying rough sawn lumber

    Hope you guys are kind to new guys with simple questions. I,m about to buy some cherry lumber. I have a 6 in jointer, 12 in planer and a table saw.
    When I go to the sawmill I would like to have at least a basic idea.Of what to ask.
    Plus..What is a average price?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Atlanta , Ga.
    Posts
    3,970
    You want to refer to thickness as 4/4.. 6/4.. 8/4.. 12/4.. etc..
    Four (4)= 1" inch. Consequently 6/4 is 1 1/2", 8/4 is 2".. etc.

    Then you need to make the call on how many sides you want already surfaced..
    S-1.. S2.. S-3.. S-4... Rough

    S-1 is one face surfaced.. S-2 is 2 surfaced.. etc.. etc... Rough is self descriptive.

    What you will find is that most suppliers will have stock averaging between 5" and 8" as a saw-mill cut will usually taper as the tree did going to the top.

    With a 6" jointer you will either have to rip amn 8 wide piece to get it through or make a dual pass on your 6" jointer by removing the guard and adding a temporary over-head bridge guard you make. And I don't suggest you do that if you are anything but experienced with a jointer.

    So... go buy some stock as any good hard-wood supplier will be glad to help you wade through details. As far as price.. I won't go there as it varies from region to region and you did not post a location. That makes it difficult for anyone to even venture a guess.

    Have fun...

    Sarge..

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Jacksonville, FL
    Posts
    733
    Welcome to the Creek!

    It sounds like you are pretty well set up to prep lumber, but your question is really hard to answer. It depends on the project you have in mind and it also depends on your experience level.

    I usually ask for FAS lumber, and usually plan for about 20% waste. That number could be quite a bit higher if you want to avoid the sapwood completely, but some folks like the contrast...

    As for prices, they are all over the board, depending on where you live. In my area 4/4 FAS Cherry goes for anywhere from $3.45/board foot to $6.80/Board foot. If you are buying direct from a mill, I would expect the price to be towards the lower end of that range (at least that's where I find the prices are cheaper)
    "History is strewn with the wrecks of nations which have gained a little progressiveness at the cost of a great deal of hard manliness, and have thus prepared themselves for destruction as soon as the movements of the world gave a chance for it." -Walter Bagehot

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Akron Ohio
    Posts
    147

    thank you

    Now I have a base to work from..And after a search of threads on the subject at least i have a idea.
    Seems from what i,ve gathered is that letting the mill do a bit of the rough work is good as long as the price is within reason.
    Cleveland ohio area.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Kanasas City, MO
    Posts
    1,787
    Dave,
    I agree on the 20% overage. If you are just a tad short, it's murderous trying to make grain-color etc from one lumber purchase to another for the same project. If nothing else, you wind up with some leftover for the next project or to have on the rack.
    Honestly, I enjoy a day of rough lumber prep. Seeing the grain pop out of the sawmill fuzz & drying haze..... machining to YOUR desired thicknesses & width or what the stock will allow is nice IMO.
    You are paying for the shavings & machine time when you buy S4S material, ya might as well get use out of the tools you already paid for & get the hours of experience on the tools too.
    The rough lumber prep to S4S material isn't as daunting once ya make up your mind to do it.

    Greg

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Jacksonville, FL
    Posts
    733
    I usually prefer to buy lumber rough sawn. Why? I want to see and choose for myself which sides to clean up and use rather than have the mill do it. They don't know what I have in mind, and they don't have time to care. Besides, I wind up shooting straight edges anyway and the mill may surface a face, but that doesn't mean that the piece is actually flat.

    So, I wind up doing the work anyway, after I paid the mill an extra $.20 a board foot to do it.
    "History is strewn with the wrecks of nations which have gained a little progressiveness at the cost of a great deal of hard manliness, and have thus prepared themselves for destruction as soon as the movements of the world gave a chance for it." -Walter Bagehot

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Dawson Creek, BC
    Posts
    442
    I too purchase only rough sawn. S2S/S4S is never straight or true enough and in my neck of the woods the upcharge is significant. The other issue, is you will not truely know the straightness until you have rough sized to the req'd piece dimensions as cutting releases internal stresses within the wood and bending can occur requiring yet further milling. I find the milling enjoyable too, and friends are always surprised when I show the final pieces v. the starting stock.

    Good luck, and everyone is very helpful here.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Plymouth County, Massachusetts
    Posts
    2,933
    I like rough sawn lumber too, but there is a downside. Just like it is pleasing to see some of the hidden wonders when it is milled, it is also risky because you can uncover some nasty stuff you wasn't expecting. And you usually can't bring it back.
    Gary

  9. #9
    I have also found some things increase cost for cherry:
    1) Is it red on both sides or one.
    2) Thicker wood cost more per board-ft
    3) Does it have a nice grain pattern (ie 'figured')
    I have picked up nice cherry, one side red, 4/4, standard grain for $3.00
    Really nice cherry, 8/4, red both sides, good figure will go for well over $6.00.
    12/4 would have been over $8.00 and up.


    Maple is sort of the same, except the cost for board-ft of 12/4 highly figured maple soars.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Jacksonville, FL
    Posts
    733
    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Keedwell View Post
    I like rough sawn lumber too, but there is a downside. Just like it is pleasing to see some of the hidden wonders when it is milled, it is also risky because you can uncover some nasty stuff you wasn't expecting. And you usually can't bring it back.
    Gary
    True, but I've had the same thing happen with 1 and 2s lumber too, the risk is a bit higher with rough, but it's there with both. The converse is also true, you can find some interesing and beautiful things too. My last order of Ash had two boards in it with some pretty remarkable curly figure. Figured Ash isn't something you come across every day...
    "History is strewn with the wrecks of nations which have gained a little progressiveness at the cost of a great deal of hard manliness, and have thus prepared themselves for destruction as soon as the movements of the world gave a chance for it." -Walter Bagehot

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Calvert County, MD
    Posts
    222
    Check out the "Wood Whisperer" website. Google it if you don't know what I'm talking about. There is a nice (and humorous) video that explains the basics of buying rough lumber.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Akron Ohio
    Posts
    147

    again...thanks

    Many thanks guys...Truely appreciated..I guess now it,s a matter of finding a good mill.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Plymouth County, Massachusetts
    Posts
    2,933
    Quote Originally Posted by Don C Peterson View Post
    True, but I've had the same thing happen with 1 and 2s lumber too, the risk is a bit higher with rough, but it's there with both. The converse is also true, you can find some interesing and beautiful things too. My last order of Ash had two boards in it with some pretty remarkable curly figure. Figured Ash isn't something you come across every day...
    At least if the lumber is at least "skip milled" you can see something. I had a batch of maple that I wanted as light as I could find. I picked the boards I thought would be great but when I brought them home and milled them there was alot of "dark" that I didn't want. If I had the chance to pick the maple already milled, I could have seen the actual color.

    gary

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Wyoming, MI
    Posts
    151
    I'd point you to Mike Morgan Dave. He has a forum in the manufacturers section, and he hauls stuff around quite a bit. You might strike a bargain with him.

    Welcome to the creek.

    Jim

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Akron Ohio
    Posts
    147

    one last thing

    After watching a video I have one last question..Quarter sawn,rift sawn or flat sawn?

Similar Threads

  1. rough lumber prices
    By Mike Evertsen in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 01-11-2008, 9:32 PM
  2. buying rough lumber
    By Michael Handrinos in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 04-02-2007, 9:21 PM
  3. How long to wait till milling new lumber
    By Bart Goldberg in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 18
    Last Post: 03-14-2005, 12:00 PM
  4. Buying rough cut wood
    By Doug Jones in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 08-05-2003, 7:51 AM
  5. rough lumber pricing part 2
    By Mike Evertsen in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 07-16-2003, 10:40 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •