I've never seen anyone selling #3 pine. Why didn't
you go to a lumber yard?
Lowes and HD both have decent, but slightly inferior,
wood. It used to be standard that pine was sold as
clear or #2. The former had no knots. With the latter
I think the requirement was only coherent knots (that
won't pop out) and not over 1" diameter. Lowes and
HD use different terms because their lumber is not
actually up to spec. On the other hand, you can usually
pick over a large selection and can often find nearly
clear lower grade boards.
A more subtle problem is species and trees. I don't
know much about specific species but I do know that
much of what Lowes and HD sell is not the standard
spruce one used to always get. Some of it is very sappy.
If you want the wood for interior finish, poplar is usually
a better choice and may be even cheaper than clear pine.
It's slightly harder, but is always clear, with small-celled,
tight, smooth grain that takes paint beautifully. And it's
not so hard that you have to pre-drill for nails if you're
careful to hammer very straight. :)
Avoid pre-primed if possible. In some cases pre-primed
wood is actually glued-up pieces that will separate later.
Also, the primer is junk. Exterior wood should be primed
with oil primer. (The good stuff, that smells like linseed oil.)
You might get away with water-base primer in a dry, warm
climate, but it doesn't stand up tro moisture. I did a job
recently where another contractor had not finished doing
some gutters. He'd left pre-primed moldings behind that
had been sitting outside for a couple of months. The primer
was actually sliding off the moldings in sheets. And of course
the moldings were just glued-up junk, anyway. So I bought
new, unprimed moldings.
|I have a little project in mind, but I need a bit of
| 1 X 4 to do it with. So yesterday I stopped by the nearest
| home supply to get one. They had the rattiest selection of
| 1 X 4s I have ever seen. They were #3 S4S (square four sides),
| but I don't think a one of them had all 4 corners the full length.
| They did have some 1 X 8s that were fairly clean looking
| so I got one of those. I suppose I could have gone on over
| to Lowes, but I don't have much faith they would have had
| anything any better. I'll have to rip the 1 X 8s down, but
| I would have had to rip the 1 X 4s too, so that isn't a big
| Of course the first problem will be to clean up the shop so
| I can work out there. I have done a number of small projects
| that didn't need much space, so I have just been shoving
| things out of the way. To do a proper job I really need
| to do a complete clean up.