what can I expect from a "good" lumberyard?

I'm preparing for my first real kitchen cabinet project - big kitchen. (mine) Cabs will have face frames. Flat panel doors with no edge detailing. Using biscuits for the frames. Having lurked here on and off for years, I think I have a good sense of the benefits of having a planer. And a joiner. I'd like to avoid buying either, but if I have to bite the bullet, I will.
Questions: If I go to a "good" lumberyard, is it fair to expect that the 1x oak will be uniform enough so that my face and door frames will be doable? What about the edges when I have to glue-up 2 1x6s for some drawer fronts? Is there a spec/standard to ask for?
I am near Washington, DC. As far as I know, there are no real mills in the immediate area -- they order-in. Would it make a difference if I ordered everything at once -- i.e., maybe it would all run through a single run at the mill? That seems good, but a downside is that I would not be able to pick through a larger lot.
In short, I'm willing to pay more for wood that is uniform versus DIY, but is it likely that even a bit paying more I will get uniform-enough stock? TIA. -- Igor
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Igor, Try Exotic Lumber in Gaithersburg -- they will mill to your order Eric

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wrote:

Thanks. I'll give them a try. To help me avoid sticker shock potential, or brace me for it, are their prices so high that I'll rethink getting a planer or (by whatever standard you might have) are they reasonable? Any other suggestions about working with them -- such as a good contact? Again, thanks.
-- Igor
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Maybe. And if they are stocking planed 1 x material, it will be very high priced compared to rough cut lumber. OK when you need one board, expensive when you are doing a kitchen.

Not that I know of. In most cases you can get a good edge running it through the tablesaw with a very good blade. Not the cheap rip or combo blade that came with the saw.

That may be possible. Why not see if there are mills around that will do it for you? It will be worth a ride for the right price and the right material. Reputable businesses won't try to slip in crap. In any case, there will be waste anyway.

Check for hardwood dealers in the surrounding area. The place I buy from will thickness and give me a straight edge at no extra cost. I've lived without a jointer so far and don't have to use the planer all that often. Perhaps a cabinet shop in the area will get the wood for you at reasonable cost.
Many lumber yards are just that; lumber for construction. Anything else is special order at very high prices. You need a good hardwood dealer.
--
Ed
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BTDT w/ maple.
IMHO, the cost/quality difference of rough-cut lumber will justify equipment purchase of a jointer and planer.
First go to a hardwood supplier, not a lumber yard for your stock. Fo my mid-sized kitchen, I used sheet stock for the carcases, pannels and drawer bottoms and solids for the face frames and drawers. I think I spent about 600 each on HW and ply, and a few hundred on hardware (knobs, drawer slides etc.)
My guess is that you could come close to breaking even on the purchase of jointer and planer (about $800 combined). You will have *much* better stock if you joint and plane it yourself because you can arange you work such that it is used before it moves (warps).
They you have tools at the end of the process :-)
-Steve

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