What's a board foot?
A board foot (bd. ft.) is the unit of measurement for hardwood lumber
T" x W" x L" divided by 144 = Bd. Ft.
Here's What To Know:
1 Bd. Ft. = 144 cubic inches
Board footage is a volume measurement
Measure by the board foot when buying random widths and random lengths
How To Plan a Project with Board Feet
or scroll down to use a basic board foot calculator
Try This Board Foot Calculator
- Only use numbers. Fractions slashes ( / ) or periods (. ) for fractional sizes. Calculator assumes your numbers are in inches, so there's no need to include double quotes ( " ).
- Calculator rounds lumber thickness up to the next 1/4" and lumber less than 4/4 is rounded up to 4/4. Thus, a specified thickness of 3/4" will be treated as 4/4" material.
- You can enter fractional wood dimensions as decimals (12.75), or as conventional fractions (12 3/4). If you use fractions, just make sure you leave a space between any leading whole number and the fraction.
The Good Ol' Fashioned Way - The Formula to Calculate Board Feet
When you're looking at a stack of hardwood lumber and and you begin picking out the boards you like and want to buy, you'll notice that each board has a different width (W), and possibly a different length (L).
Let's say you've found two pieces in the 4/4 stack, one is 8" x 96" and the other is 4" x 96". Should you pay the same price for both pieces just because they're the same length?
Of course not. The first board has twice the amount of wood in it (it's twice as wide and the same length).
The unit of measurement for this kind of lumber, then, is the board foot. It's a measure of the volume of wood that's in a board.