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How To Save Money On Material And Lower An Entire Lumber Grade

Posted on Oct 31, 2017
lumber knots

Are you paying too much for your lumber? Most of us are. Did you know that you can actually lower the grade of your material without compromising on quality, and save money doing it? It almost sounds too good to be true, but listen up, it's time to get knotty! Buying lumber with knots and defecting it yourself, can save you a great deal of money. 

You may be accustomed to the NHLA Lumber Grading Rulebook, which looks a little something like this:

GRADE TRADE NAME Min Width x Min Length 
First and Seconds FAS  6" x 8', FAS is the most expensive, best for fine furniture, cabinetry.
Select SEL  4" x 8', more cost effective than FAS, suitable for smaller parts.
No. 1 Common 1C  3" x 4', typical shop grade, good for applications where you need small parts. 
No. 2A Common 2C  3" x 4', suitable for some panel and flooring applications.

 

Based on the above chart, you've decided to invest in defect free FAS or SEL grade lumber to attain the highest yield out of each board. But is this the most economical?

You and most other manufacturers probably use a manual cross cut saw when you need to cut dimensioned parts. However, it is rare to achieve maximum yields when manually cutting a list of multiple lengths. And this is compounded even more when you or another operator has to cut around defects (knots, wane, coloration, etc.). 

Most companies will attempt to eliminate the defect dilemma by purchasing high grade material such as FAS or Select. Unfortunately, as you already know, this is the most expensive material on the lumber market. But, the cost far outweighs the loss in yield when manually cutting lower grade materials. In other words, buying expensive defect free lumber makes sense because you can get more use out of the material than you would with low grade defect riddled material.

Your process probably looks something like this: you start by cutting the longest parts needed first and cut all the like-parts until completed. This gets the job done in the most efficient manner possible. Or so you think. 

What if there was an easier way? A way where you could buy lower grade material, save money on your lumber bill, and defect your own material, while being more efficient, and getting the highest yield? Well, listen up folks, it's time to get knotty! (Forgive the pun). But seriously, it makes economical sense to buy knotty lumber and drop an entire lumber grade or two... RIGHT NOW. We will show you how.

Optimize Your Cross Cutting

You can actually defect material yourself- and save money doing it. Say hello to an optimizing and defecting saw system. TigerStop produces a fantastic cross cutting saw system called a TigerSaw 1000. Using a UV Crayon, TigerSaw 1000 allows you to mark the beginning and end of defects directly on the board. 

crayon marking

The TigerSaw 1000 scans the material to determine where the defects are and optimizes the defects against your cutlist of varying lengths. In simpler terms, TigerSaw 1000 will cut around defects giving you the best possible yield and the least scrap waste, while only cutting the parts that you need. The system also keeps track of parts cut and stops cutting once complete.

Going from a manual crosscut saw to a TigerSaw 1000 that optimizes around defects, allows you to lower an entire grade or two of material.  If you're purchasing FAS or Select, you can now purchase 1Com and still achieve the same yield. This is a material cost savings of 30% to 40%! Start saving now! Defect yourself, before you wreck yourself. 

TigerSaw 1000

 

Learn more about the TigerSaw 1000

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