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Red Pine

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As dimension lumber and boards, you'll find red pine at most outlets throughout its range. Boards in common grades (Nos. 1, 2, etc.) cost about $1.25 per foot. Wide boards (over 12") and clearer finish grades (C, C&Btr.) cost more.Although red pine will grow to 4' diameter, such a large tree is rare today. That's because most of the harvest comes from plantation plantings where trees run smaller. Therefore, wide boards prove scarce. But at the same time, plantation trees growing close together produce wood with fewer knots and straighter grain. With those positives in mind, pick boards for your project that contain the smallest amount of light-colored sapwood (unless you like contrast). You'll be lucky if you run across red pine that's been kiln-dried to 6 percent moisture content. In the construction industry, where most of this wood goes, 12 percent is considered dry. Look for the stamp "KD15" or "MC12" on boards that indicates a moisture content averaging 15 or 12 percent. Be sure to stack and sticker the wood in your shop for a week or two so it can acclimate before working it. Then, keep the following tips in mind.

Continued on page 5:  Machining methods


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