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Posts Tagged ‘saw mills’

Why Quarter Sawn White Oak Isn’t Very Wide

Monday, August 12th, 2013

We all love quarter sawn oak for the remarkable figure. And, yes, it makes some downright fantastic furniture because of both the beautiful appearance and its excellent durability.

There’s just one problem. When you want to make table tops, door panels, or tall drawer fronts out of the wood, good chance you’ll go looking for the widest boards in the stack  — only to discover that the boards are disappointingly narrow for your needs. You’ll find plenty of boards 5″ wide, but rarely any that are as wide as, say, 7″ or more.  It’s not a conspiracy to drive you mad. It’s the nature of quarter sawn lumber, and this short information video from Frank Miller Lumber (one of the major producers in North America for quarter sawn oak) sheds some light on why.

Quarter sawn white oak and how to finish it

Quarter sawn white oak sample finished and compared to a raw board

What Does Quarter Sawn and Flat Sawn Mean? What’s the Difference and Why Do I Care?

Friday, April 12th, 2013

Here’s yet another helpful video by George Vondriska from Woodworkers Guild of America, and in this one he explains how logs are sawn and how different parts of the tree produce different grain patterns. Flat sawn lumber is the most economical way to saw a log and the process produces grain patterns that are wide and cathedral like. Quarter sawn, on the other hand, is more labor intensive and therefore more expensive to buy. Quarter sawn boards have a straight grain pattern, and the lumber is generally more stable than flat sawn. In this video, Vondriska illustrates how this is done by using a slice of a log to show us what’s going on. Enjoy.

See How Chechem, An Exotic Wood, Is Cut From The Log

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010
Meet the ever-stunning Chechem lumber from Latin America

Meet the ever-stunning Chechen lumber from Latin America

It starts with a sweaty trip to a sawmill in a far-off jungle….When the guys started pushing an 8-foot-long log through the 8-inch-wide bandsaw blade (and said bandsaw was taller than a pro basketball player and wider than a pro football player), the log looked like something you wouldn’t dare bring home to mom.

It actually looked like a pain to deal with. The log had an irregular lumpy shape.  The outside of the log had been de-barked and had the semblance of a skinned cat that you probably remember cutting open in your sophomore science class; just kind of pale and streaked and awkward.

This is what cutting into an exotic wood log is like, though, and there is big thrill in watching the saw make all these slices from an ugly log into stunning lumber. read more