You can purchase lumber in many different sizes, shapes, and finishes. Untreated rough lumber is usually cut into planks. While rough lumber is strong, you cannot use it directly for DIY projects due to its high moisture. However, there are many advantages to buying rough lumber and then surfacing it yourself. You can either buy rough or surfaced wood for dye works. Sawmill lumber is rough because the logs are cut from them. The work is completed quickly with a large band saw and circular saw, whose blades are extremely coarse.
Choosing the size of your plank after selecting them is an easy way to start planning rough lumber. Having the stock roughly cut makes it easier to handle and consumes less wood. In this article, we are going to talk about different ways to cut lumbers according to basic woodworking projects.
How to Square Rough Cut Lumber with a Table Saw?
There are certain elements and techniques for cutting square rough-cut lumber with a table saw. The technique is given below step by step.
- Make one face flat with a jointer: Face the jointer to the cutter head while pushing the board through it. Press down on the board as much as you can. It may take multiple passes to flatten it out completely. Taking one pass should take about a sixteenth of an inch.
In order to ensure that concave boards do not rock during transit, you should push them through with the concave side facing down. When it is bowed or has a concave surface, do the same thing. This can be difficult with longer boards. A jointer table that is longer is more likely to be able to handle bowed boards. The board can be flattened on your jointer by cross cutting it at its final length.
- Parallel to other planes: You must run the board through a thickness planer, flat side down, in order to parallel the other plane. The board’s thickness is also finalized by making the faces parallel. It will take you multiple passes to plane away 1/64 in. to 1/16 in. This process makes it possible to remove more wood than that from softwoods like pine.
- Use the jointer to flatten one edge: In this step, you have to place your board on its edge and run it through the jointer again. By applying pressure to the board, both the fence and the jointer table will be firmly held in place. As a result, not only is the edge square to the face of the board but it is also flattened.
- Create parallel edges with the table saw: The edges must be parallel to one another. You will use a table saw to cut the board to its final width. To flatten the edge, just run it along the table saw’s rip fence. After that, a parallel edge will also be created along the other edge.
- Cut one end square: For the next step, it is necessary to square up rough-cut lumber by measuring from the square end. Firstly, make a square flat end on one end of the board with your miter saw. Miter saws are usually not necessary for you if you have a suitable table saw. Crosscuts can be easily made with a table saw. So you can use any of these two tools.
- Finalize the length of the board: After the board has been squared up on one end, it should be squared on the other end at the desired length. Just measure and make your final crosscut from the opposite square end this time. In the next step, you have to make all the crosscuts necessary to create the same length board from a single flattened board using a stop block at the end, followed by all the final crosscuts one at a time.
How to Smooth Rough Cut Lumber?
Smooth cut lumber is a sort of wood that does not have many fibers sticking out of it like the rough cut ones. Because of this characteristic, it does not absorb stains. No matter what type of lumber you stain, the difference is primarily the look you are aiming for.
Smooth wood finishes require a few steps. Each step will smoothen and enhance the final finish. You must sand away the old finish in order to completely refinish the wood. No matter how young or chemically stripped the wood is, it needs to be smoothed so that stains and finishes will properly penetrate it. Sanding, however, causes small scratches in the wood. Sandpaper’s roughness is measured in grits, the term used to describe the rough granules that make up the sandpaper. The higher the grit number, the finer the sandpaper.
A low grit, such as 80 or 100, will produce a smooth wood finish. The wood will remain rough after this, but the imperfections are removed, and it finishes quickly. By gradually getting finer, you remove some of the coarse grit’s roughness. Then use 120 or 150 grit sandpaper, followed by 180 grit sandpaper. The scratches should disappear when you have used 180 grit sandpaper.
How to Finish Rough Cut Lumber?
The name implies that rough-cut lumber has visible fibers and a relatively irregular surface. It is possible for rough lumber to contain saw marks, insect holes, and bark. The rustic effect it creates is just impossible with milled wood. Wood with a proper finish doesn’t fade or crack, and it has an enhanced natural beauty. That is why it is very important to do a proper finish on rough-cut wood. Follow these steps to finish rough-cut lumber:
Make sure that the area to be stained is well-ventilated. Open the garage door if you are planning to set it up in one. Otherwise, it is best to set up outside. Wear rubber gloves and paper breathing masks to protect yourself from harmful fumes. Protect your work area from spills by laying the tarp down.
The second step is to clean the lumber if it is outdoors; you can clean it with a bristled brush and warm water. If there are any rough edges on the lumber after it has been washed, sand it with sandpaper.
What Finish Should I use on Rough Cut Lumber?
It is important to choose the right finishing products for rough-cutting lumber because not every finishing product is suitable. Finishing rough lumber often involves the use of polymerized tung oil and boiled linseed oil. Linseed oil is the cheapest oil, but it takes longer to dry, and it doesn’t have as much resistance to water as tung oil. So it is better to use tung oil if you can afford it.
How to Treat Rough Cut Lumber?
To use rough cut lumber as traditionally cut lumber, you must treat it properly. In other words, the finish and varnish need to be applied appropriately. A finish is applied to wood to protect it against water. Following the finishing and varnishing process, you can use finished lumber as you can use commercial wood.
Step 1- A level table is necessary for placing the rough-cut wood. After that, sand a power sander all over with 100-grit sandpaper.
Step 2- Using a clean cloth, dust off the wood.
Step 3- The next step is to stretch the wood. Use a paintbrush to apply wood stain.
Step 4- Use a clean towel to wipe off the excess wood stain.
Step 5- Flip the wood over and paint the stain on the other side after the stain has dried for several hours.
Step 6- Utilize sandpaper of 300 grit to sand the wood. Using a clean cloth, wipe the wood.
Step 7- Apply a wood varnish to the wood using a paintbrush and let it dry completely.
Step 8- Put on a third coat of varnish.
How to Mill Rough Lumber?
A full-thickness of rough-cut and surfaced lumber is manufactured during the milling process. It is standard practice to sell milled lumber by the board foot. To mill rough lumber is only a 3 tool work. Here are the steps involved in milling rough lumber:
- Make small pieces out of the big boards of rough lumber
- Use a circular saw and or a Japanese tree-trimming saw for crosscutting.
- When you finish thinning boards, let them rest.
- You should plane boards 1/8 inch thicker than you need
- Floor them on edge, so air circulates all around
- Make sure you get the true, useful length of your board before you do any other crosscutting
- Rip rough lumber with the bandsaw
- Stabilize the workpiece with tall support on the outside
- Reveal grain by skipping extra plane
- Mark the grain direction to know where to start next time.
If you are someone who loves to do wood DIY projects by yourself, then you can follow the tips above when you are working with rough lumber to get the best results.