Went toward the Beech on Black Friday!

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Forum topic by jusfine posted 11-28-2012 04:34 AM 1349 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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2422 posts in 3129 days

11-28-2012 04:34 AM

Topic tags/keywords: workbench beech sale

We don’t have Black Friday sales (officially) in Canada, but as I stopped in at the wholesale lumber supplier Friday afternoon to price out some 8/4 material for an upcoming bench build, the best price ever on hardwood just about hit me between the eyes…

I priced out Maple and Cherry, as that was my intended species for a new Roubo style bench to build this winter. While chatting with the forklift operator in the warehouse, I glanced over at the lifts of hardwoods stacked 25’ high and noticed a tan colored hardwood that I had not seen there before.

Was told it was German Beech, but since it was between some lifts and near the bottom of 6 other lifts, it was really hard to see except for end grain, but I did notice the material seemed to be planed (not rough sawn) and cut so cleanly it almost looked like it was surfaced on all 4 sides.

The operator told me they brought it in some time ago for a customer, he ended up taking only a few pieces and it had sat in the warehouse for quite some time.

I went to the front desk and just about laughed out loud when they told me if I took the whole lift I could get it for $2.50 a board foot. The cherry was priced over $4.00 per board foot and hard maple was $3.11 for 8/4 stock.

Bought it, hooked up the trailer and picked it up today – unloaded it in the barn tonight – couldn’t be happier.

All 8/4 pieces are surfaced to 1 15/16”, consistant in width, between 5 1/2” and 7 1/4”, flat and square as can be, clear (found 7 minor knots in 108 pieces), and very straight. Only a few have a chip or edge damaged or the ends cracked a bit.

I really don’t understand why anyone wouldn’t have purchased it before, but I am grateful they did not.

On the trailer before unloading in the barn.

Cannot wait to get started on the bench now! May need a bit of contrasting color to show it off…

The only thing is, what do I do with the rest of it?

Thanks for looking!

-- Randy "You are judged as much by the questions you ask as the answers you give..."

11 replies so far

View nwbusa's profile


1021 posts in 2489 days

#1 posted 11-28-2012 04:41 AM

That’s a real nice buy, especially up here… Nice job! Wood looks to be of excellent quality. I’d say you’re all set for your bench build!

-- John, BC, Canada

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John Ormsby

1288 posts in 3940 days

#2 posted 11-28-2012 04:48 AM

You got a great deal on that wood. German beech is very god for a workbench. Seems to be the perfect hardness and grain type.
Have fun on your build, builds?

-- Oldworld, Fair Oaks, Ca

View waho6o9's profile


8525 posts in 2780 days

#3 posted 11-28-2012 04:57 AM

Nice score Randy, congrats on the Beech!

Maybe make benches and sell them with the extra stock you have.

View Brandon's profile


4152 posts in 3154 days

#4 posted 11-28-2012 05:33 AM

Nice Randy. Congrats on all that wood. I built my bench out of German steamed beech and love it. I’m sure you’ll find it to be a great material to work with.

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


15701 posts in 2821 days

#5 posted 11-28-2012 06:38 AM

Holy cow, that’s alot of wood! Beautiful, too.
Two benches? Maybe three? :-)

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

View live4ever's profile


983 posts in 3213 days

#6 posted 11-28-2012 10:00 AM

That’s some nice quality wood for a great price! When it’s got your name on it, it’s got your name on it.

Wish I lived closer, would be glad to take some off your hands for MY bench build! lol

-- Optimists are usually disappointed. Pessimists are either right or pleasantly surprised. I tend to be a disappointed pessimist.

View paratrooper34's profile


915 posts in 3155 days

#7 posted 11-28-2012 10:05 AM

Send the left over to me!!!

Seriously, beech is AWESOME for a workbench. My Ulmia, like all others, is made from German red beech. What you could do with some of the left over, is make tools. Red beech is/was the wood of choice for wooden bodied planes and all kinds of other wooden tools. Great wood to work with.

Good Luck with your new bench, you got one of the best woods around to build with.

-- Mike

View Don W's profile

Don W

19014 posts in 2770 days

#8 posted 11-28-2012 12:24 PM

sweet. That will be one fine bench Randy.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View jusfine's profile


2422 posts in 3129 days

#9 posted 11-28-2012 02:52 PM

Thanks for the comments, guys, I will certainly put up more information on the bench build once the Benchcrafted hardware arrives and I get started…

Appreciate the suggestions for use of the extra lumber!

One of the reasons I snapped it up (besides price) was because of the appreciation of my long wearing beech Ulmia bench, glad to see others feel the same about it.

Also like the fact the lift came from a sustainable forest program…

-- Randy "You are judged as much by the questions you ask as the answers you give..."

View Brit's profile


7545 posts in 3045 days

#10 posted 11-28-2012 09:52 PM

That’s a great price Randy. Congrats. Why not make a matching saw bench with some of the left over wood?

-- - Andy - Old Chinese proverb says: "If you think something can't be done, don't interrupt man who is doing it."

View lysdexic's profile


5256 posts in 2826 days

#11 posted 11-29-2012 02:28 PM

That’s wonderful Randy. I have said before, my only gripe with my bench is that the soft maple with the curl, ambrosia worms, etc makes for a visually busy surface. Beech will be perfect.

-- "It's only wood. Use it." - Smitty || Instagram - out_of_focus1.618

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