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RE: Dry Lumber

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Dennis Wish wrote:

. > Roger Turk in Tucson has more rain in his area and greater humidity that 
. > we have in the Mojave Desert (he is in a Sonorian Desert) but I think he
. > designs mostly with kiln dried lumber as well.

Hi Dennis,

Since it has only been relatively recently that a limiting moisture content 
has been specified for kiln dry lumber other than by the Southern Pine 
Inspection Bureau, no, I don't specify kiln dry lumber because the chance of 
getting it in all of your pieces is as good as finding a snowball in hell.  
With current grading rules, kiln dry lumber, IIRC, has to have less than 12 
percent moisture *when graded* and could have considerably more when it 
arrives on site.

I specify that the lumber be graded "dry" and hope that it was not subject to 
rain or snow while being transported or stockpiled.  "Everybody" knows that 
it doesn't rain in the desert southwest (even during the summer rainy 
season), so lumber is stockpiled on site without protection.  "Everybody" 
knows it won't rain overnight, so structures are not dried-in at the end of 
work each day, regardless of what the specifications may say.  It is rare to 
even see stockpiled lumber on site stickered.

If a client wants pieces larger than 4 X 12's, I make them aware in writing 
that the piece is subject to splitting, checking, shakes, warping, cupping, 
twisting and just about every other visually bad thing that can happen to 

A. Roger Turk, P.E.(Structural)
Tucson, Arizona

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