Square foot compared to board foot

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Forum topic by yellowtruck75 posted 08-21-2012 12:35 AM 1792 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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469 posts in 3065 days

08-21-2012 12:35 AM

I potentially have a job coming up for 2200sq foot of tongue and grove hardwood flooring. I need help converting bf to sq foot. The flooring would be 5” wide and 3/4” thick so I would get 4/4 lumber. How do I figure out how many bf I need for 2200 linear feet?

8 replies so far

View MrRon's profile


4769 posts in 3241 days

#1 posted 08-21-2012 01:06 AM

If you start with 6” wide stock, you will need 1100 bf before cutting tongue and groove edges. A bf is 12”x12”x1” thick.

View Wdwerker's profile


333 posts in 2231 days

#2 posted 08-21-2012 01:06 AM

Square foot of 4/4 or 3/4” thick flooring is the same as board foot. Linear foot of that flooring would be 5” x 1” thick x 12” long = 60 cubic inches. A board foot is 144 cubic inches 12×12 x 1” thick. You are paying for the full size of the rough lumber before it is planed and a straight edge is ripped on it.
So multiply 2200 sq ft times 144 and then divide the answer by 60 and you will have linear feet of tongue and groove needed. DO NOT forget to add in a percentage for cuts, trimming ends and waste! Bundles of T&G have random lengths of boards, usually the middle of the bundle is full of short pieces unless all long pieces are specifically promised. Sometimes clients object to really dark boards or if the colors are not mixed and an area gets too many light or dark pieces next to each other. Ask questions before the floor is nailed down! Most T&G needs to be acclimated to the job site for temperature and moisture content to equalize.

-- Fine Custom Woodwork since 1978

View ShaneA's profile


6929 posts in 2596 days

#3 posted 08-21-2012 01:07 AM

Kind of a tough one. 2200 linear ft of 5” wide 3/4” thick flooring equates to 916.67bf. Assuming no waste. But unless you are buying the boards already in 5” widths jointed/ripped clean and parallell on both sides, which you probably arent, you will need quite a bit more. How much, I am not sure? Depends on the quality and deminsions of the stock you start with.

2200×12x1×5=132,000\144=916.67 hopefully the formula I used is right, wouldnt be the 1st time, if it aint.

View nwbusa's profile


1021 posts in 2284 days

#4 posted 08-21-2012 01:08 AM

Be sure to account for waste, too.

-- John, BC, Canada

View Dallas's profile


3599 posts in 2485 days

#5 posted 08-21-2012 01:09 AM

You are making your own flooring? Wouldn’t it be more cost effective to buy flooring already made? In which case, Bd. ft. doesn’t matter.

On the other hand, bd ft doesn’t mater if you are making your own flooring either. 5”x3/4”x12” = .31 bd ft.

You need to know the total square footage and buy enough lumber for that, plus a fudge factor. (I use 6%). Thickness in this case is non-essential because no matter what nominal thickness you use, 3/4, 4/4, 5/4 etc, the area covered will still be the same.

-- Improvise.... Adapt...... Overcome!

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Jorge G.

1537 posts in 2473 days

#6 posted 08-21-2012 01:21 AM

0.0833×2200=183.33 board feet. If you give yourself a 15% waste allowance you would need about 210 bd/ft

-- To surrender a dream leaves life as it is — and not as it could be.

View JJohnston's profile


1622 posts in 3289 days

#7 posted 08-21-2012 01:31 AM

First, you’re confusing units. Do you need 2200 square feet, or 2200 linear feet? Then, if 1 square foot, 1 inch thick is 1 board foot, 2200 square feet at 4/4 thick is 2200 board feet, isn’t it?

-- "A man may conduct himself well in both adversity and good fortune, but if you want to test his character, give him power." - Abraham Lincoln

View Loren's profile (online now)


10390 posts in 3646 days

#8 posted 08-21-2012 02:29 AM

If you’re going to make flooring, better run a sample batch
of 100 lf or so to get a feel for what your equipment can
do and what your reject rate and limitations are likely
to be.

Woodmaster sells a setup for making the stuff and it
is probably the most economical way to go. A pair of
shapers with power feeders in combination with your
planer is another way to do it.

Keep in mind that in that volume you need to have
a good way to accurately straight-line rip a reference
edge. You can parallel rip on your table saw.

If you already know this stuff, cool. I just want to warn
you it’s not a quicky job at all with lightweight machinery.

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