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Lumber Information

Performance Characteristics of Construction Lumber:
Wood TypeTotal PerformanceFreedom from ShrinkingFreedom from WarpingDecay Resistance (Heartwood)Paint HoldingFreedom from Pitch (Resin)WorkabilityNail HoldingBending StrengthStiffnessHardness
California Redwood 26 3 3 3 3 3 3 2 2 2 2
Douglas Fir-larch 23 2 2 2 1 2 2 3 3 3 3
Western Cedar 22 3 3 3 3 3 3 1 1 1 1
Southern Pine 22 2 2 2 1 1 2 3 3 3 3
Eastern Hemlock 21 3 2 1 1 3 2 2 2 2 2
Hem-fir 19 2 3 1 3 3 3 1 1 1 1
Idaho White Pine 19 2 3 1 3 3 3 1 1 1 1
Spruce-Pine-Fir (Canada) 17 2 2 1 1 3 1 2 2 2 1
Englemann Spruce-Lodgepole Pine 15 2 2 1 1 3 2 1 1 1 1

3 = Among woods relatively high in the characteristic listed

2 = Among woods intermediate in the characteristic listed

1 = Among woods low in the characteristic listed

NOTE: Three other characteristics to consider not listed in the chart are price, maintenance level and treatment (pressure treated). The chart is simply a guideline and some characteristics such as nail holding ability do not apply to Plan-it Play kits. Our kits use screws instead of nails that can work loose over time. Check with your local home center or lumber yard for availability and recommendations on wood best suited to your climate or region of the country.

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