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Thread: Wood gone wonky – an idiot level question

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    Maplewood, NJ
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    Wood gone wonky – an idiot level question

    I'm trying to make some old-fashioned wood storm windows for my 1902 garage.

    I bought a couple of 6" 5/4 pine boards at Home Despot, made sure they were nice and straight in all directions, took them down to my shop and ripped a 2" piece off of one of them.

    That piece immediately skewed by about a 1/2" in two directions.

    What did I do wrong? I know it's not a moisture issue... the wood is quite dry.

    Did I just buy the wrong wood in the wrong place?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    somewhere east of Queen Creek, AZ - South East of Phoenix
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    you didn't do anything wrong that wood just did what it wanted to do. they probubly dried it to fast or something like that. btw I have never seen 5/4 lumber at the borg.
    "There’s a lot of work being done today that doesn’t have any soul in it. The technique may be the utmost perfection, yet it is lifeless. It doesn’t have a soul. I hope my furniture has a soul to it." - Sam Maloof
    The Pessimist complains about the wind; The Optimist expects it to change;The Realist adjusts the sails.~ William Arthur Ward

  3. #3
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    Mar 2010
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    Maplewood, NJ
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    Thanks, Don. My problem now is that, should the rest of the wood behave in the same fashion, it's going to wind up being useless to me. Wooden frames meant to hold 26" X 27" panes of glass need to be flat.

    Would I be better off using different wood? Would it help to buy it at a lumber yard rather than a borg?

    And, yeah, it really was 5/4, a full 1 1/8" thick, which surprised me. I was expecting it to be a bit thinner.

  4. #4
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    somewhere east of Queen Creek, AZ - South East of Phoenix
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    I never trust wood from the borg for anything other then simple framing so yes I would go to you local lumber supplier. Personally if it were me I get some poplar or something fiarly inexpensive and stable plus you'r just gonna paint it I assume.
    "There’s a lot of work being done today that doesn’t have any soul in it. The technique may be the utmost perfection, yet it is lifeless. It doesn’t have a soul. I hope my furniture has a soul to it." - Sam Maloof
    The Pessimist complains about the wind; The Optimist expects it to change;The Realist adjusts the sails.~ William Arthur Ward

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Southeast Pa
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    Brian
    I had written a fairly long post on this and hit the wrong key..

    But as Dons says there isn't much you can do with the wood at this time, and yes every piece will probably do the same thing. It is caused by what is called "case hardening" and it happens with cold rolled steel as well. When you remove the surfaces countering the internal tension it just goes wild. If you can find something air dried or at least dried slowly you have a chance..... This wood was ruined before it got to you. Some of the fast growth wood is hard to dry without internal stress...or so I have heard...

    Even plywood does it today which used to be unheard of...Look at the twists in the plywood piles at the borg....

    Find a local sawyer and good luck....

    Wood may well be cheaper as well...
    Garry

  6. #6
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    Maplewood, NJ
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    Thanks guys. I'm out $32 for the wood, but maybe I can find a use for it that doesn't require ripping it, or where it won't matter if it warps. It's a comfort to know there's an alternate solution.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    Westphalia, Michigan
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    955
    I think Don got it right. I would get some poplar And use it for the frames. Just be sure to prime and paint them with a good exterior grade paint. Sometimes you can luck out with pine 2x wood from a lumber yard. I have gotten southern yellow pine once that worked well for a similar project.

    However you must remember that the lumber buyers for the big yards and the borgs are buying in large quantities and from several different sources so you get "white wood" of various species, mostly pines or spruce trees. The sources are spotty at best in my opinion when it comes to drying the wood properly. Also a lot of the 2 x 4's are made from smaller trees that have lots of knots and stress in them. When I am planning a project like yours a I will sort through a lot of wood to get clear and straight boards. That is still no guarantee that they won't warp.
    I'm a certifiable tree hugger. (it's a poor mans way of determining DBH before cutting the tree down)

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    If you are going to paint the shutters HD has primed 5/4 6" wide stuff that is made up of a number of glued up pieces. I used it on my exterior window trim. No problems with it at all.
    Faith, Hope & Charity

  9. #9
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    Delton, Michigan
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    the glued up panels have taken out the stresses in the parent wood therefore making a good choice for your work..brian
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
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    Hudson Valley NY
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    Brian, I just finished the 33rd storm window, 13 more to go, for a historical site nearby. I bought all my 5/4 from lowes and have not had a problem other than a knot spliting out when I put a screw through it. Maybe a bad batch at hd?

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