Thursday, 08 December 2016 14:18

Do you like your hardwood lumber surfaced?

If you are familiar with the hardwood lumber industry you know that unless specified, kiln dried hardwood lumber from the concentration yard is typically provided rough.  But today, many customers prefer to receive their lumber surfaced.  Sometimes it is to be better prepared for their manufacturing process other times it is to be able to better determine the grain patterns or lumber characteristics.

Additionally, some request their supplier to surface their lumber because they believe it provides a slight freight savings and because it can be done more cost effectively than them processing the lumber through a planer themselves. 

4/4 Prime Red Oak S2SSurfacing lumber, or dressing lumber, is the act of planing the boards so that each board is smooth and uniformed in thickness.  The most common request for surfaced lumber we see is S2S, or hardwood boards surfaced two sides. This is often referred to as Hit-and-Miss, meaning surfacing to a non-finished thickness such as 15/16” for 4/4 lumber.  This surfaced thickness of 15/16” allows some sections to be slightly rough or “skipped” after dressing.  However, these skipped sections must clean up at 13/16” in order to make the required lumber grade per the rule book. Other common thicknesses this applies to include 5/4 lumber to 1 3/16”, 6/4 lumber to 1 7/16”.

S4S, or lumber surfaced four sides, is another common surfacing option. This refers to boards being planed and in addition also being straight line ripped on two sides resulting in the board being flat, uniformed in thickness and squared up with parallel edges ready for the manufacturing process. This is a commonly requested item for hardwood distributors, retail outlets, or manufacturers looking for lumber to process directly through a moulder to produce a finished product.

S3S is another surfacing option. It is also commonly referred to as S2S lumber with one edge straight line ripped, (SLR1E).

As a hardwood manufacturer, we can handle all these options and surfacing lumber is something we provide as a service upon request. 

Do you order your lumber surfaced? What dimensions do you require? Are you interested in learning more? Let us know.  We would be happy to help!

Tony Cimorelli
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