Why Is A 2×4 Not Actually 2 Inches By 4 Inches?

Why is a 2x4 not actually 2 inches by 4 inches? "Dimensional" lumber is the general name for framing lumber. Now, most timber is milled and planed to give it a little more of a finished look, and a little more of a consistent size and profile. Because of this extra milling, a 2x4 no longer measures a full 2 inches by four inches.

Why are the actual dimensions of lumber different from the nominal dimensions?

The nominal shape of the lumber is the rough-sawn lumber and would have rough surface and irregular shape. Thus to produce smooth surface on lumber ¼ inch per side of the lumber is removed. Therefore, the actual dimension of lumber is different from the nominal dimensions.

Why is a 2x4 only 1.5x3 5?

The 2x4 refers to the rough-cut green wood: it shrinks during drying, then the dried wood is planed smooth, so the finished lumber is supposed to end up at 1.5"x3. 5". While it doesn't really shrink that much, the mills get more usable finished 2x4's from a given tree if they cut them slightly smaller to begin with.

Can you buy true dimensional lumber?

All of our lumber is cut to true dimensions. Meaning if you order a 2"x 4" x 10' the piece of lumber you receive will be 2 inches thick, 4 inches wide and 10 feet long.

When did they start using dimensional lumber?

The term dimensional lumber came into popular use around the beginning of the 20th century to distinguish lumber cut to pre-determined sizes from other types of wood, such as corded wood for fireplaces.


Related faq for Why Is A 2x4 Not Actually 2 Inches By 4 Inches?


When did lumber get smaller?

In 1961, at a meeting in Scottsdale, Arizona, the Committee on Grade Simplification and Standardization agreed to what is now the current U.S. standard: in part, the dressed size of a 1-inch (nominal) board was fixed at 3⁄4 inch; while the dressed size of 2 inch (nominal) lumber was reduced from 15⁄8 inch to the


What does it mean when someone calls you a 2 by 4?

(slang) Small in size; boxed in or cramped. A two-by-four apartment.


Why does CLS have rounded corners?

This timber is usually manufactured from kiln-dried fir, pine, or spruce. It is then treated, planed, and finally finished with rounded edges to create accurate and precise tolerances. This timber is also ideal for internal stud walling since it is surfaced on all of its four sides and it has rounded arrases.


Why is framing lumber rounded?

Framed walls with slightly out-of-square timbers would present a sharp edge when the face of the lumber is not perfectly square to the plane of the wall, so drywall could be damaged during installation. A rounded edge lessens drywall damage, even when studs are not perfectly square.


How do you round a 2x4 edge?


How can you tell if lumber is treated?

How can you tell if wood is treated? Pressure-treated lumber has end tags or stamps identifying the chemical used. It can have a green or brown color from the treating process. Treated wood can smell oily or chemical as opposed to a nice natural smell of untreated wood.


What is the actual size of a 1x6 board?

1x4 and 1x6 boards lose 1/4 inch in thickness and 1/2 inch in width before leaving the mill. That means a 1 x 4 board is actually 3/4 inches by 3 1/2 inches. The larger 1x boards (1x8, 1x10, etc.) lose 3/4 inch in width.


How wide is 2x8?

Lumber Dimensions: Nominal vs. Actual

Nominal Size Actual Size
2x6 1-1/2" x 5-1/2"
2x8 1-1/2" x 7-1/4"
2x10 1-1/2" x 9-1/4"
2x12 1-1/2" x 11-1/4"

What is the actual size of an 8x8 post?

x 8 ft.; Actual: 5.5 in. x 5.5 in. x 96 in.)


What is the difference between nominal and actual size?

It is important to understand the difference between nominal and actual size when shopping for a filter. Nominal Size is the printed, labeled or rounded size of the filter. A nominal size can have several different actual sizes. Actual Size is the true size of your filter.


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