If you’ve been an avid DIY enthusiast, you’d know that hardwood lumber is the gold standard in the furniture-making industry. But despite its hard and stable quality, newbie woodworkers tend to have a hard time obtaining this material because of its high price.
Fortunately for you, our DIY experts are here to help you get the best deals when picking hardwood lumber for your project.
What to do Before You Shop
Estimate How Much Hardwood Lumber You Need for Your Project
Before buying any material for your woodworking project, our team suggests strategically planning how much lumber you’ll need. Ask yourself considerations like: will ½-inch plywood would suffice instead of ¾-inch? Do I need a 4/4 lumber or a bigger sized 5/4 lumber for this project?
Some may argue that such tactics may jeopardize the quality of your project. However, great woodworkers will always find a strategic way to use their available resources.
Units of Measurement to Know
If you survey the local market or any sawmill near your place, you will notice that hardwood is sold via board foot (BF) metric. You may not know, but many retailers round off these measurements when they hit the store.
For example, if you’re buying a 6.85 BF of hardwood, most sellers would round off this measurement to 6.9 or 7.0 BF. Because of this, the costs may increase significantly, especially if you’re buying in bulk. We recommend having your calculator with you to ensure accuracy in pricing.
How to Calculate Approximate Pricing
When buying affordable hardwood pieces, you must remember that one board foot is equivalent to the volume quantity of a 12 x 12 x 1.0 inches board. The pricing would depend on what kind of lumber you’ll purchase. If it’s oak, expect the pricing to sour up to $20 per board foot.
The calculation for approximate costs is simple. All you need to do is multiply how many board feet you’ll need by the retail price indicated by the seller.
If you need a 10 BF of oakwood, multiply it by the general retail price of $20, and you’ll be paying around $200.
How is Hardwood Lumber Sold
The concept of board foot may confuse new woodworkers, so it’s best to tackle it through wood thickness as how many retailers would specify. The calculation of hardwood lumber when selling always revolves around the formula Length x Width x Thickness, divided by 144. All lumber measurements are calculated in inches. The overall result will be the BF calculation sold to you.
How and Where to Find Hardwood Lumber Suppliers Near Me
#1: Join Woodworking Clubs and Organizations
As resident woodworkers with years of expertise, we can assure you that joining clubs and organizations may give you more perks than you can imagine. These groups can recommend the best wood retailers in the area with exclusive deals to their members.
You’ll also have the perk of consulting with your fellow members about the complexities of your project.
#2: Check Your Nearest Local Supply Store
If you’re working on a massive project, the chances are you’ll need a large number of materials. Because of this, our team urges you to check the nearest stores if they have what you need. Keep in mind that transportation of these boards may add to your expenses.
#3: Do a Quick Search on Google
Quickly searching the keyword “Hardwood Lumber Near Me” could get you a long way. As you know, Google is the best search engine worldwide  that can give you reliable results on any of your lumber-related queries. Plus, a retailer with a decent website is mostly more credible than those with none.
#4: Look Around on Social Media
In this digital age, it’s not surprising that many businesses are establishing their presence on social media channels. These retailers often post their events and deals on their profiles, so it’s wise to keep track of their accounts and see if they have the best wood for your workbench project.
How to Choose a Supplier
Weigh Your Options
When choosing a hardwood supplier, the wisest thing you should do is check if their available stocks suit your woodworking needs. You may not know, but there are different types of wood pieces offered in the market. The thickness of these boards may range in quarter-inch increment measurements, from ¼-inch to 4/4-inch.
These lumber options are also classified into four grades. The United States has a grading system for these wood pieces that’ll greatly help you, with Grade 1 as the highest quality and Grade 4 as the lowest.
Our experts recommend asking your retailer if the wood is dried or not. You’ll encounter timber options that went through air-dried and kiln drying. If you want the best quality, go for the latter.
Bargain or Ask for a Discount
If you’re buying from big home improvement stores, creating an account through their websites can score you some discounts. If that’s not an option, getting social with salespeople in your local lumber store is a great alternative.
Picking Up Your Order: Important Reminders
Confirm Your Requirements
Shopping for wood pieces requires a lot of time. So before you hit the road along with your lumber orders, you’d better check if you got the right board size or thickness for your 4/4 lumber.
Straightness of the Lumber
Buying longer boards such as 8/4 wood size is the standard to avoid another trip to the store. However, some pieces coming out of the mill may not be in perfect shape. Some parts need to be cut, such as grains and knots.
If you’re picking your material far from your woodworking shop, get a transport vehicle that suits the size of the lumber you bought. You wouldn’t want your wood pieces damaged before you begin your project, do you?
Searching for “Hardwood Lumber Near Me” on the internet requires a few seconds of your time, but our team assures you that it can make your wood shopping experience easier. And now that you’re well-informed, the next step is to hit the road and find the best wood material for your new project.
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