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Hard or Soft maple at big box?

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Forum topic by bringitonhome posted 05-03-2010 03:24 PM 1221 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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bringitonhome

28 posts in 2536 days


05-03-2010 03:24 PM

Hi-
Would anyone know which type of maple they typically sell at the big boxes – since it is labeled only as “maple”? I asked an associate at HD yesterday. You may be surprised to hear that I was met with a blank stare and a somewhat glossed-over look. I’m not experienced enough myself to tell the difference myself.

Thanks


5 replies so far

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PurpLev

8523 posts in 3109 days


#1 posted 05-03-2010 03:43 PM

I believe it’s hard maple from my experience. but they might have different species at different locations.

if you were surprised with the blank stare. you’d have a ball seeing their responses when I asked them what does “SPF” on dimensional lumber stand for (I was looking for SYP at the time = Southern Yellow Pine) .. after “checking with others” I was told that they are not sure, but the “S” is for “Special”. no, I didn’t buy it. I went home researched it, and found out that SPF stands for “Spruce, Pine, Fir” – basically can be either one of those, and a mix.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View poopiekat's profile

poopiekat

4224 posts in 3195 days


#2 posted 05-03-2010 04:51 PM

I always thought it was a marketing ploy by the furniture business, to declare that their rocking chairs or children’s bedroom sets were ‘hard maple’ or ‘rock maple’. I also thought that the term ‘soft maple’ was an underhanded way to sell birch or poplar for a maple price. Best to make sure that your lumber list comes all from the same source to avoid mixed results in finishing.

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

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richgreer

4541 posts in 2535 days


#3 posted 05-03-2010 05:53 PM

My advice is to not buy hardwood from a big box store unless you have no other choice. It is usually terribly overpriced. Some lumber yards carry a limited amount of hardwood and prices vary. I’m fortunate to have 2 good hardwood distributors within 40 miles of my home.

There are also some good internet sources for hardwood. Despite the cost of shipping, you can still get better prices and more variety than you can from a big box store.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

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bringitonhome

28 posts in 2536 days


#4 posted 05-03-2010 06:11 PM

My advice is to not buy hardwood from a big box store unless you have no other choice. It is usually terribly overpriced. Some lumber yards carry a limited amount of hardwood and prices vary. I’m fortunate to have 2 good hardwood distributors within 40 miles of my home.

There are also some good internet sources for hardwood. Despite the cost of shipping, you can still get better prices and more variety than you can from a big box store.

Actually, I have full intention of getting the lumber for the project at a lumberyard, but since i don’t have the milling equipment yet (jointer, planer) – i was just picking up a sample board to test stain/finish before I start the actual project.

Do you have any recommendations for online lumber sources? I’d love to compare to the local lumberyard. Besides, I called them the other day, and they we’re pretty surly. Kind of turned me off…

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uffitze

199 posts in 2416 days


#5 posted 05-04-2010 12:59 AM

try craigs list for small sawyers. woodfinder.com is also a good resource for finding suppliers.

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