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Forum topic by eagreenwell posted 03-15-2019 11:28 PM 151 views 0 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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1 post in 11 days

03-15-2019 11:28 PM

Hi everyone,

I’m new to Lumberjocks and appreciate the opportunity to ask the hive about a project I’m working on.

A local mill was milling slabs of blue pine, and since we have a kitchen with grays and gray-blues, I thought this particular pine would really compliment the rest of the kitchen and look good. The mill is cutting a slab for me that is 2’ thick and 26’ x 146’, along with backsplash boards and an additional breakfast bar slab at 2’ think and 12’ x 60’. The big slab is the only piece that is milled so far.

I have worked with wood a little bit, but nothing of this size.

Some important details: the big slab was milled two days ago and currently its on my back porch, laying flat, what I intend to be the face up. The mill owner said the log was fairly dry. The slab looks dry to me, but I’m no expert.

Since I’ve heard horror stories about slabs warping, shrinking and bowing, I though I would ask all of you your recommendations at this stage—the very beginning.

How would you recommend drying the slab, if needs to sit a while? Are there any measures I should be taking to keep it from bowing or warping? Should I store it for a while before installing and finishing? If so, how long and where? I live in Northeast Oregon, at 4,000’ elevation, where the air is usually dryer than most midwestern and southeastern states.

Thanks everyone, in advance, for your help.

3 replies so far

View AlaskaGuy's profile


5136 posts in 2612 days

#1 posted 03-15-2019 11:41 PM

I think the slab need air circulation on both sides. That way it can release or take in moisture equally.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View John Smith's profile

John Smith

1701 posts in 466 days

#2 posted 03-16-2019 12:17 AM

Should I store it for a while before installing and finishing? If so, how long and where?
- eagreenwell

“when” were the logs cut ?? and how were they stored before milling?
the Rule of Thumb for drying rough cut lumber is one year per inch of thickness.
so if your slabs are 2 inches thick, they would need two years of curing time.
I know this sounds out of the question for you at this time, but, the WWW is full of
sad tales about people taking short cuts to expedite the process.
a professional kiln can shorten the time drastically, if you can afford it and if there
is one in your area. you can store the wood anywhere. just as long as the wood
is resting on a solid and flat place and out of the weather.
yes, your environmental conditions can affect the over-all drying process.
and as AG said, the wood needs equal air circulation on all sides all the time.
rest it on sticks at least 1.5” thick equally spaced every 18- 24 inches.
apply one thick coat of latex paint to the ends every day for 5 days to seal the wood.
and since you will be working with several green wood projects, it would be in your
best interest to invest in a good moisture meter. testing several places in the wood
weekly to monitor the drying process.
also: ask the lumberyard about bugs in freshly cut lumber in your area.
pine attracts all kinds of wood chewing varmints. powderpost beetles, Japanese Pine beetle,
and a host of others that may be prevalent in the PNW. monitor your slabs on a regular basis.
if you see any little piles of wood dust around the wood, it is time to take drastic action
to eradicate the source.


-- Failure is proof that you at least tried ~ now, go do it again, and again, until you get it right --

View SMP's profile


494 posts in 209 days

#3 posted 03-16-2019 05:15 AM

Personally I would consider using another wood for a countertop, especially a kitchen counter. But it sounds like you already bought it?

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