Quater sawn white oak

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Forum topic by flatboarder posted 01-25-2011 02:19 AM 1544 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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100 posts in 2275 days

01-25-2011 02:19 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question

Is milling quatersawn lumber harder on your jointer/planer knives than just normal plain sawn? It sure seems to have a louder tone when joining a face. I’m trying to build a buffet from QSWO I had a few boards on the floor, ” up on stickers”, but still on the floor and it seemed as if the lumber started snaking on me. I got it off the floor atleast but i’m not sure if the damage is already done. I can on guess that it could have been the moisture coming from the concrete. I check the wood and it was under 6% so I’m not really sure what happened there.

-- Ive cut this board three times and its still too short?

9 replies so far

View childress's profile


841 posts in 2960 days

#1 posted 01-25-2011 02:50 AM

Shouldn’t… and in fact being cut that way, it is more stable than flat sawn, Not sure what happened…

-- Childress Woodworks

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100 posts in 2275 days

#2 posted 01-25-2011 03:07 AM

Let me ask this then If I;m running the heater while I’m there during the day, well truthfully most the night as well but then I turn every thing off when i go home. I live in North Florida so It’s not like it gets real cold here It’s gotton below freezing I think maybe twice or three times this year and only for a day or so. What could be making this wood do this. It’s not the lumber cause i have two different sets from two different lumber yards.? Anybody?

-- Ive cut this board three times and its still too short?

View Sawmillnc's profile


150 posts in 2473 days

#3 posted 01-25-2011 03:36 AM

That doesn’t sound like qsawn. Do you have any pics?

-- Kyle Edwards,, Iron Station , NC (near Charlotte)

View Gofor's profile


470 posts in 3205 days

#4 posted 01-25-2011 03:56 AM

You are not imagining things. I did several projects this past year using kiln-dried QSWO.

As for it snaking, I would get it up at least 6” off the concrete. If that was the problem, it should correct itself after the moisture again equalizes. I stand mine on end (anything under 9’) after it gets below 12% and have not had any problems. I do set it on a piece of ply scrap to keep it off the concrete. I also have the problem of moisture coming up through the concrete. Its as bad here as it was in Panama City (FL) when I lived there.

As for harder to mill, plane, etc: Answer is definitely yes. White Oak is a very hard wood to start with (much harder than red oak, walnut or soft maple). It will also dull your cutters faster.

Really close to live oak, which it may be in your area. There are about 10 different species of oak that are called “white oak” by the lumber industry. Among these is Southern Live Oak. Its about the toughest of all of them but hard to get long straight boards from.

When quarter sawn, it has the ray flecks in it, which are in effect like running into a cross grain. I, too, have noticed a difference in the sound of a power planer when cutting it quarter sawn as opposed to flat sawn. I also notice a difference when using hand planes, so its not your imagination.

Another problem with it is that the ray flecks are very prone to tear-out, as are any grain reversals. The drier the wood, the worse the problem. Using hand planes, I have found that a steeper pitch (60+ degrees) helps greatly, but sometimes you can dampen the surface with mineral spirits and that helps with the traditional 45 degree pitch. I have not had the guts to try that with a power planer yet, although some say it works. Due to the tear-out problem, I use hand planes more than power planer on QSWO.

I really like using it for the strength and looks, but it is heavy, tough on tool, and can be a pain to work with at times. Much easier to finish than red oak, as the stopped pores don’t weep the stain.


-- Go

View NBeener's profile


4808 posts in 2592 days

#5 posted 01-25-2011 04:04 AM


That was like a chapter in one of those truly excellent woodworking books.

Well said !

-- -- Neil

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100 posts in 2275 days

#6 posted 01-25-2011 07:49 AM

Actually that was a very good analogy This will be my first QSWO project I am planning on fuming with amoina before I shellac and put on my finnish. To answer on one of the commits above. I’m sure that it QSWO It’s not my first project just with this lumber. I purchased this stock from Horizon It’s S&B and boy is it beautiful. This is my second pallet the first 50bf I bought from Lee Hearne and they got me good on that order so I had to search elsewhere. At Horizon you buy what you see They were so good at helping me pick out the boards. Pete even took pictures of every board and sent me copies. I will definitely buy from them again. Yeah this shop is pretty nice but whoever built the thing didn’t put down a moisture barrier prior to pouring the concrete. I really need to put in a built up floor and do just that , but money and time seems to get in the way. I gona mill it over a period of atleast two times before I get to the final thickness maybe even three just depends on how its acting. I do have the byrd shelix in my planer and I have a byrd cutter head coming for my new General Jointer. I also have a Terminus straight knife cutter head coming for the jointer as well. This way I can change cutter heads depending on what i’m milling. Thanks again I already got it up off the floor yesterday so I’LL check it again. I checked the moisture content and it was 6% most were ten to twelve foot boards so unless I cut them down I cant stand them on end. It’s funny i tried looking today in my shop and I couldn’t find a place to stand them up. Way too much stuff. I do have three places for stock lumber but there all full of other wood.

-- Ive cut this board three times and its still too short?

View Gofor's profile


470 posts in 3205 days

#7 posted 01-26-2011 05:30 AM

Thanks for the comment, Neil. Just stating experience ‘cause I am no expert.

flatboarder: I think you will be fine after it settles down off the floor. The multiple mill vs wait technique has worked well for me in my garage/shop. With the shelix heads, you may do quite well. I do not have them, but was really impressed with how they work when visiting a fellow wood worker’s shop where I was able to try some purple heart using one. If I am not mistaken, the Byrd head has the helical cutters, so hopefully this will reduce any tear out. I will be interested to hear how well they work for you.

The fact that all your vertical storage spaces are full is not really a bad thing IMHO!


PS: Kyle Edwards who posted just above me may be another wood source for you to investigate. He has a really good reputation up in this area and ships out of state all the east coast at least.

-- Go

View oleCB's profile


77 posts in 2100 days

#8 posted 01-27-2011 02:59 PM

I don’t know if it is the same, might be worth a try tho. We had a large slab of trunk from a walnut tree, it was about 3.5” across and 6” thick. We left it on a concrete floor. A week later you could have used it for a bowl. We turned it over and laid it back down. In a week it was flat again!

-- There was only one perfect carpenter... It wasn't me!

View Scsmith42's profile


125 posts in 2095 days

#9 posted 01-27-2011 04:44 PM

Mark (Gofor) – OUTSTANDING POST and information! Thanks for sharing.


-- Scott, North Carolina,

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