Helpful Tips About Lumber
you're building, whether by hiring a professional or
doing it yourself, remember that the materials you use
are equally as important as the workmanship that goes
into the project. You can find good selection of all
needed materials at any Sutherlands.
Wood is the starting point for any woodworking project.
If you are just beginning in woodworking, there will
be a lot to learn about the large array of types and
grades of lumber as well as the various sizes and different
wood types. You can secure friendly and expert help
from Sutherlands employees. You'll need to know the
different types of lumber and how it is sold and sized.
There is softwood and hardwood. Softwoods are from conifers
and hardwoods from deciduous trees. However, this can
be misleading because although hardwoods are usually
harder than softwoods, some softwoods are actually harder
than some named hardwoods such as poplar and aspen.
Softwoods are usually less expensive, easier to work
with, and more readily available. Hardwood may be more
expensive, but it is usually because of its greater
richness, wide range of color, grain, and texture.
Lumber is sold either by the lineal foot or the board
foot. It may even sometimes be sold by the pound. The
lineal foot is the length of the piece itself. The board
foot is the most common way to order for volume. Sutherlands
used to quote prices by one thousand board feet. Now
prices by the piece is the most common method.
Most woodworking beginners would assume that a 2x4 board
is actually two inches thick by four inches wide. Never
assume! This is considered the nominal size of the lumber--its
size sliced from the log. However, after the piece is
dried and planed, it's actually reduced to a smaller
size. Almost all softwood lumber is planed (surfaced)
on four sides, but some species are also sold un-surfaced
for outdoor use. Dimensions can vary. Be sure to ask
an employee at Sutherlands for the actual size--not
the nominal size. Sutherlands lumber experts offer advice
for your knowledge and information.
Hardwoods may be sold in random widths and lengths,
odd-size thickness, and many times are sold with rough
edges. Hardwoods are usually surfaced a little thicker
Wondering what plywood, hardboard, or particle board
is? They are manufactured products and do offer some
advantages. One is its availability in large sheets
and the other is cost. Plywood is most likely the most
well known, but the other sheet materials of hardboard,
particle board and even fiberboard are slowly gaining