Hardwood Blog

Hardwood Blog

Perspectives and insights on the hardwood lumber industry.                     

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If you have been associated with the hardwood lumber industry for a while you are probably well aware of the differences in species based on their region of origin. However, if you are new to the industry you might find the lumber characteristics based on regions a little confusing.  Here are a few simple thoughts that should help you understand the different North American growing regions.

Hickory is not just for baseball bats!

  • Thursday, 15 October 2015 15:22
What do you use hickory for? Hickory is a popular North American hardwood species for many things.  It is harvested throughout the hardwood forests of the eastern United States and is used for many different applications.  Years ago it was used significantly in the production of sporting equipment like bats, tennis rackets, golf club shafts and skis. 

How narrow of a moulder blank can you order?

  • Wednesday, 07 October 2015 14:21
Many factors contribute to the ripped hardwood blanks a supplier would have available for sale.  Existing cut bills, species and sizes already in production, kiln dried boards available to be ripped, and rip saw capabilities all impact what type of rip sizes a supplier would have available to ship.  American Lumber is fortunate to have a state of the art rip saw, a move-able blade Weinig Raiman KR450M, that is capable of producing ripped hardwood…

What are the ways to purchase hardwood lumber?

  • Wednesday, 16 September 2015 21:06
We are constantly told by new people who join the industry that purchasing hardwood lumber is complex. Now, for some of those hardwood lumber industry veterans that might come as a surprise. But if you think about it, in today’s pre-packaged off the shelf, just in time world I can see how people feel that way. With hardwood lumber each bundle you get is unique. So maybe it is good for us to go back…
How would you define great customer service? Would it be always being able to reach a person on the phone? How about answers to your questions in 10 minutes or less? Would it be your supplier always having the products you need in inventory? Or would it be 100% billing accuracy? Maybe you would say you can’t define it fully but you would certainly know it when you see it. In reality, I am sure…
Have you ever heard the saying, “if you share you’ll get more?”.  Chances are you have.  It might even be one of the sayings you grew up with as a kid.  For us, when it comes to matching a customer’s need for hardwood lumber with the products we produce, we think the concept of sharing would be great.  Sharing wider individual hardwood boards amongst various types of customers that require narrower widths would be ideal. …
For decades craftsmen have considered using North American white ash as a substitute for Appalachian red oak.  But why? In general ash (Fraxinus Americana) and red oak (Quercus rubra) are excellent hardwoods to use for many products.  Moulding manufacturers, cabinet makers, and even door and window manufacturers could use either to produce their products. Red oak is a more traditional fiber to use for products such as those listed above, however, ash has become a…
If you are not still buying hardwood lumber in random widths and random lengths, chances are you purchase your lumber either width sorted or in exact ripped-to-width bundles.  But why would a manufacturer prefer sorted strips or hardwood rips? Many times manufacturers that purchase hardwoods in sorted strips will do so to rip a specific hardwood blank. They already have the equipment and the expertise available in their production process and they feel they can…
It seems that every day one of my customers asks me, “Can I see the hardwood lumber tally for that bundle?” Of course, in an attempt to provide the best possible customer experience, the answer to the question is undoubtedly yes.  However are they always necessary? Don’t get me wrong, hardwood lumber tallies are important.  They provide detailed information on the boards that make up a bundle of lumber.  They provide important insights into the…

Why Is 8 Foot Poplar Hard To Find?

  • Friday, 10 July 2015 15:51
We are often asked why is Poplar in eight foot only lengths so hard to find?  We get this question especially from moulding and millwork manufacturers who prefer to receive eight foot board lengths because it works best for their finished products.  For them, longer length boards just become harder to work with and usually end up being shortened as a finished product  leaving an assortment of unusable shorts that just pile up in their…