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15

Your pallet board may not be worth the effort, but there are several techniques that you can try to salvage any warped board. The optimal solution will vary depending on how you intend to use the board. Wikipedia has a nice primer on specific types of defects in wood which fall under the blanket term of warping: bow : a warp along the length of the face of ...


15

I find this really hard to believe.. if dropping a piece of lumber did 'relieve stress' then there should be no stress in it by the time it makes it to your local lumber distributor-- it's been dropped numerous times between tree and your shop. Are we sure the original publish date of this article wasn't April 1? ;)


13

Rather than hollowing out a piece of 4"x4"x8' piece of lumber, think about how to use thinner stock to come up with something that looks like 4"x4"x8'. There's a long tradition of this- porch columns are the first thing that come to mind. Those aren't solid wood, they're built up from smaller stock. As far as the technique, that depends on the overall ...


12

The Sagulator is a good quick calculator you can use to work out the type and thickness of material for any shelf or tabletop spans. It also factors the type of material into the load-bearing capacity. Consider the maximum weight any load-bearing horizontal member is likely to hold, and confirm that your design will be able to hold that much without too ...


11

You're asking the right questions but before you blame the drying process or harvest season, make sure you're comparing apples to apples. You didn't mention what type of wood you're using when you buy dimensional lumber vs. rough lumber, but the type of wood may be a large factor. For example, Douglas fir, which is commonly sold as studs and dimensional ...


11

I suspect the issue here is with the bowsaw blade not having enough 'set' to the teeth. The 'set' of the teeth on a saw blade is how far to either side the teeth are bent out from the main body of the blade, which makes the width of the cut wider and gives the body of the blade some clearance in the saw groove (kerf). Some bowsaw blades have no set (...


11

A board foot is a volume of wood 1 inch by 12 inches by 12 inches; i.e., 144 cubic inches. If the board is 1/2" thick and 12" wide, one board foot would be 24" long. If the board is 2" thick and 6" wide, one board foot would be 12" long. Note that although rough lumber closer to advertised size than dimensional lumber, it is still often sold in nominal ...


10

If you have a table saw that can rip at least 2" deep, you could do something like this: Source: me Dark gray areas are waste. This assumes you have a .1" thick blade. Basically, you would take off 1/2" from opposite sides, then take 1/2" off from the remaining uncut sides. To bring the hollowed piece back to square, you remove two blade thicknesses from ...


10

Green — Very fun to turn and it's like shaping butter, however, the greener it is the more likely you will get cracks as it dries and quite possibly a bit of warping. for building projects (book shelves, tables buildings etc) Green is a terrible choice unless you are going for a specific affect as the wood dries. Kiln (fast kiln) — Very dry and stable, ...


10

The more you know about the species the better. First is knowing that the species you are buying is endangered. This Wood Database article provides a decent reference for species to look out for. Being able to identify the species may help recognize woods that are 'similar' being switched and sold as the 'real' thing. To be sure you are getting what you ...


10

While named the same, the milling processes and resulting boards are two different things. It would be easier to say that each of the milling processes can yield boards of different types. There is confusion that stems from this. Presently the following is accepted. Understand that it would be inaccurate to expect that a specific milling process would ...


10

The strength of wood is established for various species based upon the actual cross section area of material. Industry standards set over 50 years ago established the actual dimensions of a nominal 2x? boards at 1.5" wide. The depth of 2x4 and 2x6 were set 1/2" less than nominal dimension and large depths at -3/4" from nominal. Structural engineering tables ...


9

First, I would avoid any pressure treated wood around anything having to do with food preparation - the chemicals that go into that wood are often poisonous. Redwood or cedar would be good choices for anything outdoors, as would cypress, white oak, and teak, but they are more expensive and harder to source. 2 by lumber is always 1/2" less than the ...


9

The confusion comes from nominal vs. actual dimensions of dimensional lumber. Typically a solid wood board sold in customary/imperial units is slightly smaller along its thickness and width, the thickness being the smallest dimension. For example, a "2x4" is actually 1.5in x3.5in and a "1x3" is actually 0.75in x 3.5in. To convert from customary units to ...


8

Great question, Steve. I wish I'd had the wisdom to ask this before I got too into woodworking. I used to buy all my hardwood lumber at Home Depot for 4 times the cost! (I'm not exaggerating). Big box stores specialize in construction lumber so it's a very poor place to buy furniture-grade lumber. So I started shopping at a local hardwood dealer. (I'd do a ...


8

I was trying to find the answer to something else and realized there was a section in this book called, Modern Woodworking Techniques. It is a conglomeration of articles from the magazine Fine Woodworking. On page 124, they talk about drying your wood. It says that the "old-timers" rule of thumb is a year of air drying per inch of thickness, but ultimately ...


7

I would certainly worry about assembly in the cold, and anything you are going to glue needs to be above 50F for the glue to work properly anyway. Moisture is the bigger worry, and in the northern climes winter is pretty dry, add cold to that and you are looking at issues when the project warms up and is exposed to more moisture. So yes, I would recommend ...


7

If you do not need the exact thickness of the board you could just run it thorough a planer and or jointer to flatten it out. But if the board thickness is exactly what you need then I have seen a jig, it was a few years ago, that used steam and weights to straighten boards out, but this seems like a bit of overkill to me to create such a large jig (...


7

It can very difficult to find wood that requires minimal milling, but it is possible. The tradeoff is that you may need to spend a lot of time searching through every board to find the one or two that are straighter than others. Look for wide, 4/4 (1") or thicker boards with few knots. These come from larger trees and are generally more stable. Look at the ...


7

This is exactly right. Kiln dried wood is typically prized for it's stability and use in construction. This may be preferable in pieces work that would get laminated or otherwise glued together, however if it is too dry, sometimes even the moisture from the glue can cause swelling and require extra drying time. I typically prefer to turn in air dried wood. ...


6

If it's in contact with or partly buried in soil, and isn't adjacent to food plants, go with PT; it'll probaly last several times as long. If it's above grade and will dry out berween rainstorms, cedar will probably do just fine. Note that these days there are other alternatives too -- some of the tropical hardwoods are moderately affordable and very ...


6

Stress is only relieved by either bending or cracking. If dropping cracks the wood in the right way, then stress is relieved. You could potentially relieve internal stresses by encouraging it to bend in the right way, but that seems risky - how do you know which direction to go, and how far?


6

This is actually a very common occurrence in woods like pine and fir. Many would suggest that you do not use these woods for reasons just like this one. If you persist then heat is the solution. Note: this is based on untreated wood. Not all lumber is kiln dried and even if it was you cannot guarantee the temperature it was dried at (or duration for that ...


6

The paint isn't only used to identify the wood boards by lumber yards, but it's also used to seal of the end grain to slow down the drying process. Because exposed pores or tracheids on the end-grain surfaces promote too-rapid drying and result in checks, it is wise to coat the ends of boards to slow the moisture loss from the end grain. Almost any ...


5

I have not found any reference for the bark comment but depending where it is stored and even if you haven't had problems in the past you cannot assume you are safe from infestation. I personally have not had any issues with Powerpost beetles but the prevention thereof is fairly generic as far as infestations go. Note: there are several dozens of varieties ...


5

The only time I can think of where you would actually need to hollow out a piece of wood, would be when you're making a spindle for a floor lamp. These need to have a hollow core for cabling to run through. The workshop I currently work in was previously a lamp factory and they left behind a "coring" machine. I don't actually know what the proper name for ...


5

Additionally, it's how the wood is grown - the spf used for dimensional lumber grows and is grown fast... Look how wide the growth rings are. This contributes a coarseness to the wood in working conditions. As far as species goes, have you ever tried to smooth out poplar? It can be really nerve-wracking in its ability to resist smoothing and maintain a ...


5

Keep the gap open with wedges. Next to that, sharp teeth are the most important thing. I learned that lesson with a chainsaw -- even though the engine was doing the work, a dull chain got me nowhere, and after sharpening, it cut like a hot knife through butter.


5

If the lumberyard selected and delivered it, I would feel comfortable returning for exchange any pieces that I could not use due to either straightness or cosmetic defects. Some yard workers will use their discretion to dump otherwise un-sellable boards on a delivery knowing that an average contractor over-buys and will sort through the pieces to find boards ...


5

As rob pointed out a board ft. 144 cubic inches. When dealing with rough cut lumber that is always how it is calculated for sale. Partially because it is NOT the final dimensions of the board, you will need to plane and join the sides making it smaller. Boards you find in Menards and Home Depot already have had this finishing process done and are ...


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