Question about value of old oak boards

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Forum topic by MrDan posted 01-18-2014 06:11 PM 1654 views 0 times favorited 18 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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209 posts in 3850 days

01-18-2014 06:11 PM

Topic tags/keywords: wood oak lumber planks wood for sale

A friend of mine has a store that is going out of business. The floor in his store is old 4/4 solid oak planks and he was wondering if they had enough value that it would be worth selling them. The planks are between 6” and 12” in width and anywhere from 4 to 10 feet in length. He has about 240 board feet of this oak.

Personally I’d love to take the wood myself, but I have no room to store it and I don’t have the machines necessary to mill them flat and square for work…I’d spend eons cleaning these up with my old Stanleys… :)

Do you think this is worth pulling up and trying to sell?
Any idea of what 240 board feet of this wood might go for if he were to sell?

Here are some pics:

18 replies so far

View bbc557ci's profile


596 posts in 2636 days

#1 posted 01-18-2014 06:30 PM

Sure they’re worth selling but a value is tough to determine until the boards are off, and cleaned up to see what the condition is, and what grade the oak is. I’d find out what comparable new oak is selling for per BF in your area and then go from there. Hell, tree huggers and greenie-boppers will sometimes pay more for used lumber than new.

-- Bill, central where near the "big apple"

View MrDan's profile


209 posts in 3850 days

#2 posted 01-18-2014 06:57 PM

Thanks Bill.

View GaryL's profile


1099 posts in 3393 days

#3 posted 01-18-2014 07:03 PM

I assume they would have nail holes in them after removal? Are they clear or have knots?

-- Gary; Marysville, MI...Involve your children in your projects as much as possible, the return is priceless.

View LiveEdge's profile


600 posts in 2182 days

#4 posted 01-19-2014 12:08 AM

Phew. Who is going to do the work of pulling them up? Triple and quad nailed per joist. That’s gonna be some work.

View BentheViking's profile


1782 posts in 3126 days

#5 posted 01-19-2014 12:54 AM

Is the building getting demolished too? Not really sure why he’d be removing the flooring

-- It's made of wood. Real sturdy.--Chubbs Peterson

View Don W's profile

Don W

19381 posts in 3130 days

#6 posted 01-19-2014 02:13 AM

I agree with post 1, but would like to hear the answer to the last question. If the floor needs to be replaced, its a different story.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View MrDan's profile


209 posts in 3850 days

#7 posted 01-19-2014 06:37 AM

No, the building is not getting demolished or anything. The floor was put down 30 years ago when there was a renovation to eliminate a step from one side of the room to another. There is a perfectly nice floor underneath the wood and since he’s clearing all of his stuff out of the store he wanted to remove the floor too.

They are mostly clear but they do have some knots. Of course these wouldn’t be used for furniture that needed to be immaculate, although there is plenty of good wood in there between the nail holes… but there are plenty of projects they could be used for…and as Bill mentioned, sometimes having that old, reclaimed look is more valuable than new stock.

View oldnovice's profile


7511 posts in 3930 days

#8 posted 01-19-2014 06:49 AM

I have some native Iowa red oak the is now 100 years old and if I were to buy what I have remain it would probably cost me in the neighborhood of $800.
So, IMO, it’s worth it if you can store it out of the weather!

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

View Paul Mayer's profile

Paul Mayer

1082 posts in 3627 days

#9 posted 01-19-2014 08:01 AM

I was at Rockler yesterday and they were selling some old oak wide plank floor boards that had a hole pattern about the same as yours. They were asking $6/bf for it. I wouldn’t pay anywhere near that for it so I can’t say that I feel it is “worth” that much, but that is the price that they had on it.

-- Paul Mayer,

View bigblockyeti's profile


6126 posts in 2283 days

#10 posted 01-19-2014 04:16 PM

I’m sure you could sell it, but in it’s current condition it would probably be worth somewhere in the $1.00 – $1.50/ bdft. range (at least around here), could be different in your area.

-- "Lack of effort will result in failure with amazing predictability" - Me

View GaryL's profile


1099 posts in 3393 days

#11 posted 01-19-2014 04:41 PM

+1 for bigblockyeti

-- Gary; Marysville, MI...Involve your children in your projects as much as possible, the return is priceless.

View hydro's profile


208 posts in 2314 days

#12 posted 01-19-2014 06:21 PM

From what I see in the OP pictures, I would not put any of that material near my tools. It looks like rough sawn boards, nailed at each joist. There will be many years of sand and grit ground into the surface of the wood, not to mentuion potentially bits of nail left over from ripping it out.

You may be able to sell it as “primitive” building material to someone wiling to risk cutting it up, but overall I would say it is not worth the time an effort to try pulling it without destroying it.

-- Minnesota Woodworkers Guild, Past President, Lifetime member.

View Madwood's profile


68 posts in 3613 days

#13 posted 01-19-2014 09:40 PM

Ok, since no one else has suggested, it is absolutely worthless and needs to be disposed of. I am certified as a timber disposal technician and would be the proper person to take care of this for you. Please forward your address and I’ll send a truck to pick it up, no charge to you.

Seriously, if you know of someone with a wide belt or drum sander, it would clean up fairly easily. Around here (central NY), reclaimed timbers go for a premium. I’d start at around $6-8/bf and go from there.

Good luck, John

-- In the shop making chaos out of order

View hydro's profile


208 posts in 2314 days

#14 posted 01-19-2014 11:29 PM

The OP is in Wisconsin. Used oak is maybe worth $1.00/ ft where freshly sawn stock can be bought at local mills for that. Hardly worth the effort IMO.

-- Minnesota Woodworkers Guild, Past President, Lifetime member.

View Nicholas Hall's profile

Nicholas Hall

352 posts in 2669 days

#15 posted 01-20-2014 12:30 AM

+1 not worth the effort. The reclaimed lumber angle is a craigslist hail Mary. It might be worth minimum wage to have pulled it up and cleaned it up. I wouldn’t pay more than $2 bdft for it. I can buy oak for that price straight out of the kiln without 4 nailholes/bdft.

That would be true if the building was being demolished. Since it isn’t being demolished, it sounds lime a bad idea…

-- Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read. -Groucho Marx

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