Using building lumber/??

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I am wanting to build a day bed for someone cheaply. But I do want it to look nice and hold up. It needs to be painted white. Will using regular 2x4 and other building lumber be ok? Around here, I think it is southern yellow pine. I plan on planeing it and everything.
Other wood around here is just so expensive. I have some oak at home, but hate to use it and paint over it.
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It will work just fine and especially since you will be painting it, that is what I did for many years, many years ago. I would advise using the same brand primer for a base coat and lightly sanding that coat before applying the top coat.
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"Leon" wrote

LOL! We disagree on something ... at last! :)
I was beginning to wonder ... (don't tell the girls, they still think we're long lost twins).
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I was focused on "CHEAP" and the fact that he would be milling it.

LOL
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"stryped" wrote in message

Use poplar ... much cheaper, and still a hardwood, with hardwood properties, and you won't feel bad painting it.
I would not build anything I'd want to be proud of out of today's plantation grown construction lumber, except maybe temporary shop fixtures.
Trust me ... if it's worth spending your time on it, it's worth using the best material you can afford.
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choice for a project of that kind. However construction lumber will work quite well if you spend some time going through the lumber before you buy. I often find that lumber in the reject pile is better then the "good" stuff and usually 1/2 price, look at it closely though and make sure that you can use it in spite of warps, twists and splits.
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sweet sawdust wrote:

Buy kiln dried 2x12's that look from the end to be a full width tree. Rip out and and toss the center 3" of the board. Cut them to rough length and let them dry for a few weeks. You're left with mostly vertical grain that's quite usable for cheap work.
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The 2x[6,8,10,12] here are all green. The only thing we get KD is 2x4 (at the local home depot/lowes in n. cal.).
I usually have 3 or 4 2x6 and 2x8 8-footers stashed away in the shed air drying for when I need some doug fir for a project. Whenever I'm at HD and see a nice tight-grained 2x6 or 2x8 I'll add it to the stash.
scott
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"Scott Lurndal" wrote

Vertical grain Douglas Fir ... expen$ive around here, but a great wood to work with.
Whenever

Do the same when I see quarter sawn red oak in the bin at one of the BORG's.
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Whare r u findin poplar cheaper than 2x4's? ;~)
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better.
Oak white or red $2 bd ft Cherry or Walnut $3bd ft Kiln dried Maple Good Luck Hickory $1bd ft Kiln dried
all in random widths and lengths rough,

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Curran Copeland wrote:

I hate you. I'm paying 3-4x those prices.
Chris
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SYP should work fine, with proper care. It certainly is strong enough. And it should be stabile once properly seasoned. Some cautions: 1) Allow plenty of time for it to air dry and stabilize to an environment similar to its ultimate home--as it comes from the BORG, it is likely pretty wet. 2) Allow for at least double the waste you would anticipate with other wood, even if you have picked carefully from the stock at the BORG. When you dress it, you are likely to find reaction wood, case hardening, and other problems that make the final planed size much smaller than you wanted. 3)Make sure to seal and prime well. Knots and sap pockets tend to bleed through and show up as stains on your paint. I like to use a shellac-based AND an oil-based primer, on the theory that what one doesn't block, the other may. No scientific basis for that, though, and I may be kidding myself.
You might want to price out poplar. Takes paint very well, and is "better behaved" as a furniture wood than SYP (meaning less waste and less frustration in working it), and somewhat lighter, which you may appreciate when picking up the bed.
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stryped wrote:

beds (including bunks) out of SPF (aka Jummywood) bought at the Borg. My preferred method of finishing is a 2# cut of shellac (sealer) plus a second with Transtint or similar dye to get the color of your choice. This takes a fair amount of experimentation so when you get what you like, be sure to make up enough to cover the piece in one sitting. Then add a top coat of your choice: oil, oil/poly mix, oil/poly/spirits mix, etc. That should give you a good looking piece that will stand up to life's little problems.
    mahalo,     jo4hn
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I think you might have missed part of the original post? <g>
PS, I totally agree with your approach on stained pieces -- exactly what I do.
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Did your beds turn out well? I am really struggeling with what everyone is saying here. I need it to be lower cost but I dont want the thing "splitting apart" in a few months either. I dont have the time or place either to store the wood for several months before using it.
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"stryped" wrote

The things you want to watch for with construction grade lumber is going to be twist, warp, cup and bow ... and some, or all, of these things may not show up until you actually start cutting your stock to project dimensions.
Much of this will be due to the wood being "wide grained" from fast growth, compounded by not being properly dry for furniture work at the time of purchase.
Most construction grade lumber at the BORG is kiln dried to around 15 - 18% (regardless of what they say), and, IME, this is way too "wet" to be making furniture with.
If you can find well dried lumber at a lumber yard, say below 10% moisture content, you'll be much safer from the problems described above.
(HINT: while not always the case, a rule of thumb is that heavier the lumber is, the higher the moisture content, and vice versa, so look for straight grained, light boards, if you must go this route ... still no guarantee, but every little bit helps)
You may want to consider springing for a wood moisture meter ... but now you're approaching, in cost, buying a cheaper hardwood, like poplar, to begin with.
Additionally, and IME, you will certainly want to overbuy by at least 30 to 50%.
Once again, that puts you square in the price range of a cheaper hardwood, with which you should have fewer chances of problems ... but only if the poplar is below that 10% moisture content reading.
I'm not saying that it can't be done (AAMOF, there was indeed a time when this could be done on sheer luck alone, but that time is long past ), but I will adamantly state that it takes a good bit of experience to look at wood, and particularly construction grade lumber, and make a judgment as to the likelihood of problems and suitability for even the least important bit of furniture.
If you don't have this experience, IMO you're treading on thin ice. What it then boils down to is whether you have more time than money.
If that's the case, then by all means, go for it! You now know what the up and down sides are.
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RE: Subject
Have you tried getting a price on Poplar?
Stable, great paint wood, etc.
Lew
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stryped wrote:

bed on top, built for my first grandson. He is now 6'3" and 200+ pounds so the bed is now in one of my guest rooms. Outside of the expected dents and dings, it is in good shape. Another twin bed was damaged in a move but repairable and sleeps another grandchild. Another double was again damaged in a move (neither bed was done in by professional movers), repaired and is in a daughters guest room. Another (painted several times) is in my storage room and awaits something... anything... please take it away.
I found that as somebody said not only looking for straightness but lightness (low water content) is important. You will still need to acclimate the boards to the local environment for as long as you can manage (week to weeks, if possible). Joint and plane the boards. A 2x6 can stand a bit taken off and still be usable as a side rail for example. Jummy would be proud. (That's so when he googles, he will see some new references to his name. :-) )
    mahalo,     jo4hn
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jo4hn wrote:

Not necesserily true IME. Around here, the home improvement stores sell "white wood" which is #2 common hemlock/fir/pine...can be any of those. The ones that are fir are heavier. And better IMO.
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