MacBeath Hardwood in Salt Lake City, UT

  • Advertise with us

« back to Wood & Lumber forum

Forum topic by AaronSKuehn posted 01-20-2014 10:46 PM 2252 views 0 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View AaronSKuehn's profile


345 posts in 2492 days

01-20-2014 10:46 PM

Topic tags/keywords: macbeath hardwood lumber salt lake city wood supply resource

I’ve lived in Utah for about five years now, having moved from the Norfolk, Virginia area. In Virginia my local Woodcraft store had a great selection of good wood for my projects and if I bought it there, they would even surface it for me.

But in Utah my Woodcraft store is great, but they don’t have the lumber selection. I’ve researched on Lumberjocks and elsewhere and found a place called MacBeath Hardwood, in Salt Lake City. Today (1/20/2014) I had the day off so I went to check them out.

They are difficult to find, located behind other businesses, but honestly, once you see it it’s not hard to get to :) It’s convenient off I-15.

I’m an amateur/hobbyist and generally buy based on what my gut tells me I want for a given project idea. I don’t go shopping with plans or a cut-list.

When I got to MacBeath’s I wondered if they were open or still in business, but I tried the door and went right in. Right off the bat it’s fairly obvious they’re not set up for walk-in consumers. This is a business that caters to professionals…I would guess cabinetmakers, trim carpenters, custom furniture shops, etc.

Behind the counter were three guys…one of them greeted me.

“Good morning, what can I help you with today?”

I answered with “I’m just an amateur woodworker and I wanted to see what you have available. Are you set up for me to just look around?”

He said “Of course. Go through that door right there and you’ll be in the lumber room. Everything is marked for species and price. Just look out for forklifts but take a look at what we’ve got. If I can be of any help just let me know.”

So after offering my thanks I walked through the door. In a minute or so the guy who builds orders spoke to me. He asked me what I was looking for or making. I told him I was just an amateur looking around. He said to “have fun” and just give him a wave if I needed help with anything.

They have a great selection of really good-quality wood. Lots of variety and some things I’ve never seen before. Some is sold by the board foot, some by the lineal foot and some by the pound. They have a little wood for turning projects but most of it is furniture-grade lumber. It looks like they do extensive custom work too: milling, jointing and gluing up. They had about three guys working commercial planers while I was there.

The lumber building, except for a small corner in back, has no climate control. It was cold! But I took my time an enjoyed looking around and getting numerous ideas.

From the cutoff table I found a big piece of hard maple that spoke to me … it wants to be a big bowl. I picked that up and carried it around.

The guy building orders came over and said he needed to write up an order form for me so I could pay for the wood on my way out. That quickly done I went to an adjoining building that holds sheet goods. Most of it was wrapped so it wasn’t much fun to browse there, but it’s the place for cabinet-quality sheets of maple, walnut, cherry, ash, etc.

The two guys I spoke to were friendly and helpful. But it’s clear this isn’t Lowe’s, but I will not hesitate to go back when I want some quality pieces for a project. Based on my experience today, I recommend them.

Some pictures from my visit:

-- Aaron

3 replies so far

View b2rtch's profile


4851 posts in 3017 days

#1 posted 01-20-2014 10:52 PM

Yes, MacBeath Hardwood is an excellent place to shop

-- Bert

View jasonbyu75's profile


7 posts in 1086 days

#2 posted 05-28-2015 03:31 PM

At first I complained about a lot of the boards being warped or being pretty rough only in one spot so I’d have to mill (on my mediocre delta planer) down quite a bit to get a usable surface across the entire board. But then I realized that its fairly unique of them to let you sort through all the wood to pick the pieces you want. And this is the reason why there are so many mediocre pieces left over. I have since learned to appreciate MacBeath’s. They do extremely well at selling to the little guy even though most of their revenue comes from pro’s who purchase higher quantities. If you are flexible in your wood choice, typically they will have a stack of wood that recently arrived. Its easy to get quality boards from the newly arrived stuff. I previously would complain about their prices being 10 or 20% higher than the cheapest I could find elsewhere. But then I shopped around and realized that I would gladly pay this for the ability to pick through lumber, purchase small quantities, and even cut 3 feet off of the end of some exotic wood board. It s all about perspective I guess. If you look at the margins in the lumber business, I don’t think these guys are getting rich. Its just a regular business that is willing to cater to my small purchases.

View AaronSKuehn's profile


345 posts in 2492 days

#3 posted 05-28-2015 04:52 PM

@jasonbyu75: I think you make a really good point about being able to go through and browse and make your own selections. The fact that they allow that is worth it. And that big chunk of hard/sugar maple ended up being used in many projects.

-- Aaron

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics