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What is the difference between board foot, and linear foot?

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Forum topic by Hooligan__j posted 01-08-2010 08:03 PM 17706 views 1 time favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Hooligan__j

18 posts in 1734 days


01-08-2010 08:03 PM

I am a noob, as far as purchasing wood, other than plywood, and framing type lumber.
I am asking because at Ye Olde Home Despot, some woods are priced by linear foot, and at other places they are priced by board foot. Are these the same?
Thanks in advance for your help.


14 replies so far

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knotscott

5484 posts in 2043 days


#1 posted 01-08-2010 08:06 PM

A linear foot is 12” of length regardless of width. A board foot is any dimensional equivalent of 1” x 12” x 12”, such as 1” x 6” x 24”, or 2” x 6” x 12”.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

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northwoodsman

227 posts in 2413 days


#2 posted 01-08-2010 08:11 PM

I want to add that even if it is less than 1” thick, it is most often still regarded as 1” thick.

-- NorthWoodsMan

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Andrew

709 posts in 1866 days


#3 posted 01-08-2010 08:15 PM

in other words, to calculate a boardfoot,( BF) Multiply thickness by width by legnth, then divide by 144.
easy a 1” X 6”X 24” =144 divided by 144 = 1 boardfoot
or 2” X 4” X 44” = 352, this is cubic inches, divide by a square foot ( 144”) and you get 2.44 Boardfeet.
Hope that helps.
Realtor jim is correct, it should be square feet, and sqare inches, I think, now I’m so confused, the mutiliplication measures cubic feet, then is divided by a square foot. Anyway the calculations above are correct except for some of the terminology.

-- Even a broken clock is right twice a day, unless, it moves at half speed like ....-As the Saw Turns

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CharlieM1958

15702 posts in 2885 days


#4 posted 01-08-2010 08:35 PM

One easy way to think of it is that a board foot is basically the same as a cubic foot. (Not exactly, of course, because a 1×12, for example, is not really 1” thick. But in terms of doing the math it is the same.)

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

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RealtorJim

29 posts in 1779 days


#5 posted 01-08-2010 08:51 PM

Ummm… Charlie…. unless I am mistaken a cubic foot is actually 12 board feet. 12”X12”X12”.

I think you are using the measurement method that I usually use when I CUT my lumber, then realize I errored AFTER the cut has been made.

-- "If you can't find it, build it. If you can't build it, then you must need some more tools."

View Dennisgrosen's profile

Dennisgrosen

10850 posts in 1782 days


#6 posted 01-08-2010 08:59 PM

EXcuse for asking if it isn´t the right place for it then plaese send me a pm insted

I see so many bieutyful plans on the net and nearly all of them and the cutting list is
only made with inch and boardfeet mesagers and not with cm and meter and sq.meter
my question is how do I calculate from one to the other ?

Dennis

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RealtorJim

29 posts in 1779 days


#7 posted 01-08-2010 09:12 PM

1” = 2.54 cm
1’ = 30.48 cm
39.37” = 1 meter
1 square meter = 10.7639 sq. ft

cm x 0.39 = in
in x 2.54 = cm

I “think” this is correct. But you can download free metric conversion programs off the internet or use an online conversion site. Just do a search for “metric conversion calculator”. One such site (that I just searched, so I do not really know anything about it, other than it does offer online conversions) is;

http://www.metric-conversions.org

Hope this helps.

-- "If you can't find it, build it. If you can't build it, then you must need some more tools."

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CharlieM1958

15702 posts in 2885 days


#8 posted 01-08-2010 09:17 PM

Ouch! Mea culpa.

My head was thinking “144 cubic inches” while my fingers were typing “cubic foot”.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

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RealtorJim

29 posts in 1779 days


#9 posted 01-08-2010 09:21 PM

It happens Charlie. That’s why we have “designer firewood”.

-- "If you can't find it, build it. If you can't build it, then you must need some more tools."

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Dennisgrosen

10850 posts in 1782 days


#10 posted 01-08-2010 10:21 PM

´Realtor Jim
thank´s the first two I know
but the next two I wasn´t qiet sure of
and thank´s for the link

View Jerry's profile

Jerry

2197 posts in 2214 days


#11 posted 01-09-2010 02:15 AM

I am a bit of a newbie myself at a lot of this. I once did a 8/4 butcher block for a customer and ended up doing it for free because of my miscalculation on what an actual bf was. Now I know though, not to make that mistake again.

-- Jerry Nettrour, San Antonio, www.topqualitycabinets.net

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Chuck

88 posts in 1867 days


#12 posted 01-09-2010 03:39 AM

I have plans that call for a board of 1.5 furlongs by 2 cubits. How many board feet would that be/?

-- Chuck, Washington D.C.

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

11560 posts in 1772 days


#13 posted 01-09-2010 03:40 AM

Hi Hooligan. A board foot is a 1 foot long by 1 foot wide by 1” thick. Narrow boards are factored by the fraction of the foot that they are. So if you have a 3/4” board that is 8” wide, it is 2/3 of a foot wide by the length and 3/4” is considered 1” thick for usual calculations. If the wood is thinner than 3/4” and expensive, I ask for the thickness to be factored as part of and inch thick in the formula.

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

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rtb

1099 posts in 2380 days


#14 posted 01-09-2010 05:21 PM

Kind of had to get anything out of all these formulas ?? I always think of a board ft as a measurement of the volume of wood vs; a lineal foot as being just a measurement of length . So. a board foot could be 1×12 x 12 or 1×6 by 24 the volume of wood remains the same. while a measurement of 25ft is simply a distance.

-- RTB. stray animals are just looking for love

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