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Timber Terminology and measurement info.
For full glossary of terms click here

Below is a list of timber/lumber terminology that is used through-out the Buildeazy website. Because the Buildeazy Website caters to plans in both metric and imperial (feet and inches), the terminology used is not from any one particular country. Most of the terms used are derived from USA, UK, Australasia, or Canada. Some of the terms used are relevant to individual countries only.

NOTE: Timber, Lumber, or wood, means the same thing when referred to in this site - "Logs which have been sawn, or sawn and planed, and cut to length".


CODE DESCRIPTION COMMENTS
1" (example) One inch  
1' (example) One foot  
2/150x50 (example) Two lengths 150mmx50mm timber Two lengths of 150mm x 50mm boards nailed together to make one beam, header or lintel 150mm x 100mm in size.
2/2x6 (example) Two lengths 2" x 6" lumber Two lengths of 2x6 (2inch x 6inch) boards nailed together to make one beam, header or lintel 4x6 in size.
1mm (example) One millimetre  
1x2 (example) Piece of lumber 1 inch thick x 2 inches wide When relating to the size of timber /lumber, the thickness is stated before the width if using imperial measurements (feet and inches) but the opposite applies if using the metric system. For example; 2x4 (imperial inches) = 100x50 (metric millimetres)
2x4 (example) Piece of lumber 2 inches thick x 4 inches wide When relating to the size of timber /lumber, the thickness is stated before the width if using imperial measurements (feet and inches) but the opposite applies if using the metric system. For example; 2x4 (imperial inches) = 100x50 (metric millimetres)
50x25 (example) Piece of lumber 50mm wide x 25mm thick When relating to the size of timber /lumber, the thickness is stated before the width if using imperial measurements (feet and inches) but the opposite applies if using the metric system. For example; 2x4 (imperial inches) = 100x50 (metric millimetres)
100x50 (example) Piece of lumber 100mm wide x 50mm thick When relating to the size of timber /lumber, the thickness is stated before the width if using imperial measurements (feet and inches) but the opposite applies if using the metric system. For example; 2x4 (imperial inches) = 100x50 (metric millimetres)
Actual Size Actual Size The finished size as opposed to the nominal size of a piece of wood.
BF Board foot A form of wood measurement, where one board foot equals the volume of a board 1 inch thick, 12 inches wide, and 12 inches long. A board foot is equal to 144 cubic inches of wood.
FORMULA: (Thickness x Width x Length) / 144 = Board Feet
Bds Boards  
Box Rough grade timber  
BT Boric treated. Internal framing  
C.F. Chemical free  
CD Ply wood. Defects one side. Filled and sanded one side.  
CGL Common Grade Lumber Lumber with obvious defects
Ctl Cut to length  
Clears Timber without Knots  
D4S Dressed four sides  
DD Ply wood. Defects both sides  
D/G Dressing grade, but a lower grade of timber  
F1 Number one framing  
F2 Number two framing  
FBM Feet, Board, Measure  
Fj Finger jointed  
Full Sawn Lumber cut, in the rough, to its full nominal size. Also called rough sawn in Australasia.
GL Green Lumber Freshly cut lumber that has not had time to dry. Moisture content in excess of 19%.
H1 Pressure-treated (P/T) Treated for inside use. Dry areas
H3 Pressure-treated (P/T) Treated for outside use, but not in ground
H4 Pressure-treated (P/T) Treated for outside use and in ground
H5 Pressure-treated (P/T) In ground structural applications
H6 Pressure-treated (P/T) Salt water immersion
KD Kiln-dried  
KDAT Kiln dried after treatment Lumber that has been kiln dried to 19% or less moisture content after being pressure treated.
L/F Lineal (running) foot A measurement of the length of a board.
L/M Lineal (running) metre A measurement of the length of a board.
Lumber Wood Logs which have been sawn, or sawn and planed, and cut to length.
MDF Medium density fibreboard A special type of tempered hardboard with a fine, smooth finish. MDF is used in cabinet making.
Merch Merchantable.H3, usually fencing  
M/G Gauged smooth finish  
MSG Machine stress graded  
Nominal Size Nominal Size The rough-sawn size of a piece of lumber. Before the lumber is planed or dressed. The nominal size is usually greater than the actual dimension. e.g.:2 x 4 actually equals 1 1/2" x 3 1/2".
p/p Pre primed  
Premium Contains some small tight Knots  
P/T Pressure-Treated Lumber Pressure sprayed lumber to lengthen its life expectancy for outside use or inground applications
Rad Radiata. Species of pine most commonly used in NZ  
Random Mixed lengths, as it comes off the stack  
R.L Random lengths  
R/S Rough sawn  
Sawn Rough sawn  
SED Small end diameter (for round poles)  
Selected Lengths selected to order  
Siding Exterior finish on walls May be made from wood, pressed wood by products, hardboard, vinyl, or metal.
SPF Spruce, Pine, Fir Indicates that the piece of wood is from the Spruce, Pine, Fir family.
Standard Contains small and large knots  
Veneer A thin sheet of wood cut from a log.  
Wane Wane. The presence of bark or lack of wood from any cause on the edge or corner of a piece of wood.



   
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