Please recommend a hardwood lumberyard in Portland, Oreon

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Forum topic by Purrmaster posted 09-20-2012 11:44 AM 11526 views 1 time favorited 24 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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915 posts in 2290 days

09-20-2012 11:44 AM

I find myself nearly out of hard wood. I’ve been buying my hardwood at Rockler and Woodcraft. But it’s kind of spendy there and even though they say the boards are 4S they never really quite are.

So I need to find a good lumberyard to patronize. Can anyone recommend a hardwood lumberyard in the greater Portland Metro Area of Oregon (i.e. Multnomah, Clackamas, and Washington County)? I have a jointer and a planer so roughsawn or 2S lumber is fine.

It would be a bonus if the lumberyard stuff don’t mind a newbie. I’ve never been to a lumberyard before.

Thank you!

24 replies so far

View americanwoodworker's profile


185 posts in 2571 days

#1 posted 09-20-2012 01:42 PM

Look for woodworking guilds in you area and ask them. They will know of sources that are not listed in phone books and do not advertise.

Moderators, here is why I suggested you put a “resources” tab on LJ’s. It would be VERY beneficial to the members.

-- Your freedom to be you, includes my freedom to be free from you.

View AandCstyle's profile


3177 posts in 2455 days

#2 posted 09-21-2012 12:04 AM

Check out to find what you need. Enter the species, your zip code and click on the vertical search bar on the right.

-- Art

View Purrmaster's profile


915 posts in 2290 days

#3 posted 09-21-2012 12:26 AM

I’ll check out woodfinder, thank you. And I’ll see if there are any guilds in my area.

View John's profile


47 posts in 2271 days

#4 posted 09-21-2012 09:55 PM

I go to Crosscut Hardwoods and Goby Walnut.

Crosscut is a retail lumberyard, with a decent selection of a fairly wide variety of furniture / woodworking wood, plus veneer and plywood products you won’t find at Home Dildo.

Goby gets local logs of Walnut, Maple, Alder, White Oak, etc, and cuts and dries it themselves. If you’re looking to find something special, they have amazing stuff – but it ain’t cheap. I wind up digging for affordable pieces.

There’s also Woodcrafters (not to be confused with Woodcraft in Tigard) just off E Burnside. They have some wood, including moldings and stuff like that, but are more a tools and supplies retailer.

View Purrmaster's profile


915 posts in 2290 days

#5 posted 09-24-2012 08:35 AM

I’ll check those out, especially Crosscut. Do you know if either of these places allow people to look through the piles? I hear that’s bad form in some places.

Thank you.

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 3435 days

#6 posted 09-24-2012 12:02 PM

The best deal on beautiful wood for your projects is to buy rough sawn lumber and buy the machines to surface it yourself. It takes 40 to 50 bft of lumber for a major project and the difference between rough sawn lumber and surfaced lumber will quickly pay for your planer and other equipment. Check your local Craig’s List in the materials section. The last cherry & walnut I bought before I bought my sawmill had been stored in a barn for 20 to 30 years. I got almost 1000 bft of high quality lumber for $300. You can also check for local owners of portable sawmills. A lot of them have extra lumber they will sell at low cost. If you have storage space and can dry your own lumber, you can get even better prices. Most sawmills here in East Tennessee sell ‘barn’ type lumber, poplar, red and white oak for between $0.50 and $.75 per bft. Sometimes you can get green walnut maple and cherry for $1/bft as well. The first load of wood I bought was from a local dealer of fancy maple. He traveled to several small sawmills and they sold him a lot of figured maple that he resold to guitar builders. He had a lot of beautiful wood that for one reason or another the guitar builders rejected and he sold it to me for $1/bft. When he started loading my trailer, it looked like a lot more than the 300 bft of lumber I paid for… Then he threw in a few extra figured boards… I’ve long since used all the figured maple and I wish I had more. Only 2% of maples are figured and it’s tough finding them. It’s kind of like a tee shirt I saw a girl wearing once. It said: “You’ve got to kiss a lot of frogs before you find a prince!”

-- Hal, Tennessee

View Purrmaster's profile


915 posts in 2290 days

#7 posted 09-25-2012 12:34 AM

I’ve got a jointer and a planer. I got them so I could save money using rough sawn lumber, in part. And because even the 4S lumber at Woodcraft and Rockler isn’t perfect. I’ve noticed the width of a board can vary across its length. The edges of the board are often not straight or they have chunks bitten out of them.

The planer works like a dream. The jointer not so much. Though I am pretty convinced that my own lack of experience and know how is the reason the jointer is a pain. If I can get it adjusted properly it should work fine.

I’ll take a look at Craigslist. But there are two wrinkles that could get in the way of getting wood that way that concern me::

1.) I have a Honda Civic. I can only fit so much stuff in there. I’d say 8 feet in length is the maximum I can fit in there. I’m less concerned about weight since the car manages to cart my own fatness around. But there is only so much volume and length I can fit in the car.

2.) I wouldn’t be able to afford $300 of wood at once. Maybe $100 at at a time, once in a while. Though getting lumber from the woodworking stores is kind of like the death of a thousand cuts. Small purchases may cost less in the short run but over time I end up with less wood for more money.

Thank you for the assistance. Please, keep it coming. The more knowledge the better.

View AandCstyle's profile


3177 posts in 2455 days

#8 posted 09-25-2012 01:19 AM

You have spent the money to buy the jointer, so spend some time to get it properly adjusted. Are the tables co-planer? Are the blades all set so they “just” clear the out feed table all the way across their width?

Regarding your car’s capacity, you might be able to borrow a buddy’s truck or buy or rent a small trailer. Some places will deliver.

$100 should buy 15-20 BF of lumber depending on the species which is enough to make an end table, etc. Where there is a will, there is a way. :) HTH

-- Art

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915 posts in 2290 days

#9 posted 09-25-2012 05:52 AM

I’ll post a thread about the jointer later because I need comprehensive assistance with it.

10-20 board feet sounds excellent. Thank you.

View thedude50's profile


3603 posts in 2675 days

#10 posted 09-25-2012 06:50 AM

Purr master I have a good friend in gresham he has a suv and I could introduce you guys he is a writer for and a great guy. I am partial to him because we are close friends he may be able to help you set up your jointer. what kind of jointer do you have ? On the wood front when I lived up north in Beaverton I got all my wood from the want ads so Craig’s list will be a good thing I scored loads of walnut and myrtle wood big leaf maple and oak all local stuff. Back thin I had a 8 inch table saw it was the only saw I could afford. I also sell this tool called a side rack its for guys like you to carry more wood I sell them for 20 bucks they hang out you passenger windows and make a nice little rack to carry boards. if you want a set pm me.

-- Please check out my new stores and

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915 posts in 2290 days

#11 posted 09-26-2012 09:43 AM

Thank you. My jointer is the Harbor Freight 6” inch rabbetting jointer. I know it can work well because I checked out plenty of websites of woodworkers who have made it work splendidly. My understanding is that its based on an old 1950s Rockwell/Delta design. I got extra knives for it (from Holbren) and Rockler’s knife setting jig.

View Myles Standridge's profile

Myles Standridge

72 posts in 3140 days

#12 posted 09-26-2012 05:48 PM

Woodcraft in Tigard, not the best but still a candy store for WWers
Lumber Products in Tualitin, I just looked st their web page, say’s there in Chapter 11, I don’t know if they are still selling?
Woodcrafters in NE Portland, nice store
Crosscuts is where I ususlly went when I lived there
Goby Walnut
and of course Gilmer leave your checkbook at home but bring some napkins to wipe off the drool!
I have no experience with them but bobs big boards in S. WA

-- Average people have wishes and dreams. Confident people have plans and goals.

View Gshepherd's profile


1727 posts in 2399 days

#13 posted 09-26-2012 05:58 PM

Try Sierra Forest Products…... I purchase 90% of all my lumber from them.

-- What we do in life will Echo through Eternity........

View John's profile


47 posts in 2271 days

#14 posted 09-26-2012 06:30 PM

Yeah, you can pick through the stock at Crosscut, and Goby. I’ve spent hours in there dinking around trying to find just the right boards for drawer fronts or whatever. Most of what Crosscut sells is rough-cut, although they do have some S4S stuff.

I drove an ‘85 Civic for years. With a roof rack, that poor thing hauled plywood, lumber, canoes, bikes, etc. etc. Somewhere I have a photo of it with a huge pile of 16’ cedar decking material on there. Anyway, most of the stock at Crosscut is in the 10-16 foot range, but they will cut it for you. They may or may not charge you something nominal for the service.

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915 posts in 2290 days

#15 posted 09-29-2012 10:16 AM

Thank you for the suggestions. I’ll check them all out. Do any of these stores sell roughsawn (i.e. cheaper) lumber? Or are they all 4S boards?

I broke down and went to the Woodcraft today in Tigard and got some wood. Not much. Even though the boards there say they are 4S they still need to be jointed/planed, at least on the edges.

I was drooling over the mahogany. I wish I could afford some of that stuff because it is beautiful.

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