Cedar is "naturally rough"? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
  • 1 Post By FrankC
  • 1 Post By Steve Neul
Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 5 Old 08-12-2019, 06:11 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 83
View enchant's Photo Album My Photos
Cedar is "naturally rough"?

I posted this in another thread, but I don't think anyone is seeing it, so I'll start this new one.

After buying three 12' 1x6 cedar planks, I posted this review on Lowes:


Inconsistent sizing and milling
I only needed 3 12-foot lengths, but had to pass over a dozen boards before finding anything useful. We're all used to picking through damaged boards, but most of these boards weren't ever once good and got damaged. Many of them looked like they hadn't been milled at all and had that very rough finish to them. The three that I went with had inconsistent widths. Usually, 6" boards will all be 5.5". Mine were 5-1/4, 5-5/16 and 5-3/8.
Lowes replied to my comment:

Empire Team 08/09/2019
Pat, thanks for taking the time to write a review and share your honest feedback. We're so sorry to hear you had this experience. Cedar is naturally a rough wood. These boards are run through the mill but they are intentionally left with a rough finish (See product photos) and sanding is recommended. If you're looking for boards with a smooth finish, we recommend whitewood boards as those are a softer wood. Additionally, with boards, sizing may vary. The common measurements of this board is 1 x 6 x 12 but we must also list the actual measurements which are 0.6875-in x 5.5-in x 12-ft. In manufacturing, a nominal size or trade size is a size "in name only" used for identification. The nominal size may not match any dimension of the product, but within the domain of that product the nominal size may correspond to a large number of highly standardized dimensions and tolerances. For lumber boards, they're commonly referred to by their 'common' dimensions, 1 x 4, 1 x 6, etc. The nominal or 'common' measurements are a boards size before it has been planed (surfaced) on all 4 sides. This is why both common and actual measurements are listed; to provide the industry standard size and final size measurements, during this process it's possible that sizes may vary. Hopefully these explanations help.Thanks again for your comments, sincerely ~ Empire Co Customer Care Team
"Naturally rough wood"? Is that really a thing? I've never heard of that. I assumed that cedar was a solid tree like other woods, is cut into rough planks and milled down smooth, like other wood. No?
enchant is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 5 Old 08-12-2019, 06:33 PM
Senior Member
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Posts: 5,655
View FrankC's Photo Album My Photos
Looking at the photos in the link you posted it is obvious that this is rough cedar used for trim, hence it is called an appearance board.
mjadams61 likes this.

Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something -Plato

FrankC is offline  
post #3 of 5 Old 08-12-2019, 07:32 PM
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 25,995
View Steve Neul's Photo Album My Photos
Yes and no. People desire cedar wood to have a rustic appearance and being rough sawn fills that need. Some cedar is rough on one side and smooth on the other. Any wood is rough when milled out of a log. It's just other woods are sawn thicker and sent through a planer to it's finished thickness. It's why 3/4" lumber is considered four quarter, meaning it was cut out of a log an inch thick. Then it is surfaced to 3/4". If a person would mill cedar 1" thick and then run it through a planer there is no reason it couldn't be as smooth as any wood.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	IMGP2061.JPG
Views:	43
Size:	103.3 KB
ID:	377855  

mjadams61 likes this.
Steve Neul is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #4 of 5 Old 08-14-2019, 04:32 PM
Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: Dutchess County, NY
Posts: 510
View Packard's Photo Album My Photos
The lLowes near my house has cedar boards rough on one side and smooth on the other.
Packard is offline  
post #5 of 5 Old 08-14-2019, 08:29 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 83
View enchant's Photo Album My Photos
The lowes at my house had everything. Some boards were rough on both sides, most were partially rough on at least one side. I bought two boards that were totally smooth on both sides and one that was smooth on both sides except for about 1/3 of one side.
enchant is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome