Premium North American Hardwood Lumber

Fine hardwood lumber for the discerning craftsmen

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Species: Walnut
Type: Thin Stock
Thickness: 1/2" Walnut
Width: 3", 3.5", 4", 4.5", 5", 5.5", 6", 6.5"
Length: 12", 18", 24", 30", 36", 42", 48"
 
Type: Cutting Boards & Kits
 
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Size: Large, Extra Large

Ethically Sourced

We have a close relationship with our loggers and sawmills and guarantee that our materials come from environmentally mindful harvesting.

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North Castle Hardwood

MORE ABOUT NORTH CASTLE

Our company owners have been providing the highest quality custom graded lumber to the Japanese furniture market for over 30 years.

Discover Woodworking

Learn tips & techniques for working with hardwood lumber.

image of person painting their wood countertop with a gloss finish

Wood Countertops: Choosing the Right Finish

Explore expert tips for selecting the perfect finish for wood countertops, ensuring durability and enhancing aesthetics effortlessly

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Image of plank of lumber being measured by a tape measurer to calculate board feet

How to Calculate Board Feet the Easy Way

Simplify lumber calculations with easy-to-follow tips. Master board feet calculation effortlessly for your woodworking projects.

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freshly stained home deck made of cedar wood

Is Cedar a Hardwood?

Discover if cedar is a hardwood, its unique properties, and benefits for woodworking projects in our detailed guide.

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How to Store Lumber Safely - Expert Tips

How to Store Lumber Safely - Expert Tips

If you’ve ordered lumber for an important project, you’ll need to have somewhere to store it! Ideally, you should think through your storage plan before you order the boards, so they can stay flat while they acclimate to your space. You’ll need to consider both where you want to store your lumber and how you’re going to store it. (Upright? On a rack? Stacked on stickers?) Here’s the North Castle Hardwoods guide to storing lumber the right way. Where Should You Store Lumber? Lumber needs to be kept somewhere dry and with good ventilation. Lumber should be stored indoors whenever possible. Wood must not be exposed to rainwater or direct sunlight.  If your workshop is in a pole barn, shed, or detached garage, see if you can install a horizontal or vertical lumber rack against one wall. If you have a little more room, you can stack the lumber on stickers.  In a smaller workshop, you may be able to store lumber overhead, as long as the roof trusses are strong enough to take an additional load.  Lumber and Moisture Lumber is very sensitive to humidity. Moisture will not only cause boards to swell, twist and warp, but can also permanently mark the wood. Your number one concern when storing lumber must be to keep it in an area with low relative humidity. Kiln-dried or well-seasoned lumber has a moisture content of between 6% and 9%. (Construction timber will be slightly higher). Green or fresh-cut lumber needs to be stored differently from well-seasoned boards. Tip: Consider acclimatizing the lumber before use, i.e. storing a selection of lumber in similar conditions to where the finished project will be kept or used. Can You Store Lumber on the Floor? You should always raise lumber off the floor. You need to let air circulate between your lumber and a concrete floor, or moisture can be trapped between the boards and the concrete.  The same is true for wood floors. If there is a difference in moisture content it will equalize between a plank of lumber and a floorboard.  Can You Store Lumber Outdoors? We do not recommend storing lumber outdoors. It could work if you live in a dry environment, but most of the US is too humid for this to be practical – especially for premium-quality wood. You might be able to get away with storing construction timber outdoors for a bit, but you’re taking a risk. If you have to keep your lumber outdoors, keep it off the ground. Lay a sheet of plywood or OSB down over the ground. Raise the lumber up on concrete blocks, stack it with stickers for ventilation, and cover it with a tarp. Check it after a rainfall, and consider removing the tarp if there’s trapped water underneath. If your treated construction lumber is laid flat on racking or pallets over well-drained concrete, then it may be fine. Construction timber is very resilient, but your carpenter may complain if you let it get too wet. Handling and Preparing Lumber for Storage As soon as your order of wood arrives, prepare it for storage. Leaving it on the pallet or in the box for too long could cause damage. Inspect the lumber and make sure it will meet your needs. Check for moisture content and any defects like splitting or knots. Sort by length, species, and grade. If you uncover any issues, get in touch with the supplier right away. Organizing Lumber You can buy wall-mounted lumber racks or make your own. Storing lumber on racks vertically or horizontally can work equally well, as long as it’s done safely. Horizontal racks should be installed at least 8-12” off the floor, so you have room to sweep under them to keep the area dust-free. In my home workshop, I have a lumber rack on one wall that allows me to lay out lengths of lumber up to 12 feet long by 12 inches wide. It’s placed opposite the door for easy access when I take a delivery. I sort by species and store my thicker pieces of lumber at the bottom of the rack. Heavy at the bottom, lighter at the top.  At the back of the rack, I store lumber vertically. This is usually the thinner, small stuff I need for repairs or other handmade projects. How to Stack Lumber the Right Way When stacking lumber horizontally, separate boards with inch-thick “stickers.” These are thin sticks made from any timber. As long as they are the same size, they will ensure good air movement between the boards and prevent moisture build-up. The stickers should be lined up vertically and spaced no greater than 16” apart to prevent sagging, twisting, or bending. This is especially important when storing larger boards. Safety Measures Keep these crucial safety tips in mind when setting up your lumber storage: Keep pathways clear. Make sure aisles are free of clutter and tripping hazards. Stack securely. Keep lumber stacks stable and balanced. Put heavier boards at the bottom of the stack. Make sure all the boards in one layer on a stack are the same thickness. Distribute the weight evenly. Avoid stacking too high. The height of the lumber stack should always balance the width to keep it stable. Store in a well-ventilated area. Ventilation is not just important for keeping the wood in good condition; it helps prevent the build-up of gasses from chemically treated lumber. Keep the area clean. Dust, shavings, and debris can damage your woodworking equipment and create a fire hazard. Wear protective gear when handling and stacking lumber. Wear gloves and goggles, and head protection if storing lumber up high. Be mindful of fire risk. Store lumber away from stoves, sparks, or electrical equipment. Keep up-to-date fire extinguishing equipment nearby.  Have a safety plan. Make sure everyone who uses your workshop knows where PPE, fire extinguishers, and exits are located. Regular Maintenance and Inspection of Your Lumber Put it on your calendar to regularly inspect your lumber storage. Go through a safety checklist to make sure your workshop is free of fall or fire hazards. Sort and label new additions as necessary and collect scrap. Make sure that none of your lumber is affected by moisture or pests. Problems are much less costly to remedy if caught early! More Lumber Storage Ideas A scrap wood pile can quickly become a mess, so set aside a pallet or packing case to keep it tidy. In larger workshops, consider a lumber cart for moving boards around the shop. Keep your lumber storage well away from paint and finishing product containers. Oils, glues, varnishes, and other wet products should be kept inside a cupboard and bunded to contain spills. Take time to make labels for your lumber. If you regularly use oak, take an off-cut, and carve, or write on it and then fix it to the rack. You can use stencils, spray paint, or a scorch marker to personalize your storage. How Do I Store My Fresh Cut Wood? Fresh-cut lumber will have a higher moisture content than dried lumber from the merchant. If you have planked the lumber from your own woodland it will need to be laid out flat in an open barn, with stickers, to allow it to dry out. Most commercial wood producers will kiln-dry their lumber to speed up the moisture reduction process. The controlled environment of a kiln will reliably produce workable lumber of a consistent quality that is ready to use. Drying wood naturally in a barn takes longer, perhaps a summer season or two. Remember to check air dried wood regularly for movement and water ingress. How Should I Store My Hardwood Flooring? The manufacturers of laminated hardwood flooring have their own recommendations for storing the packs their product comes in, but the basic principles are the same. Keep the stacked boards dry, and acclimatize it if you can to minimize movement after installation.

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Wood vs Plastic Cutting Board

Wood vs Plastic Cutting Boards: Which is Better?

One of the easiest ways to embrace eco-friendly living in your kitchen is to switch from plastic to wood cutting boards. Not only is wood durable, beautiful, and sustainable, but science indicates that it’s more sanitary than using plastic cutting boards! Wood vs. Plastic Cutting Boards True, wood cutting boards are more expensive than plastic ones. They also require more specialized care. If you toss your wood board in the dishwasher, you’re in for a mess! Plastic is cheap and easy. However, the old warning “you get what you pay for” is very applicable when comparing wood to plastic. Let’s look at some important differences between the two materials as cutting boards. We’ll also discuss which wood types work best. Attractiveness The variety of grain patterns and colors that occur naturally in hardwood means that every wood cutting board is unique. Talented woodworkers can mix different species of wood in lovely patterns. Plastic cutting boards are available in a variety of colors, including some that are made to look like stone.  Durability and Longevity If you’ve ever seen the knife gouges in a plastic cutting board, you may be tempted to believe that’s just how all cutting boards will end up.  However, some kinds of wood can heal itself! End-grain boards are considered a more high-end product and tend to heal themselves the best. After use, wood has shown that its grain and fibers tend to close back up, not something you see with plastic. A plastic cutting board will last 1-5 years. A good wooden cutting board can last decades when properly maintained. Anecdotally, some Reddit users mention 30-year-old wood boards that are still going strong. While you should replace your plastic cutting board if it gets deep gouges, a wooden cutting board can be sanded down and refinished to extend its life! Safety Plastic cutting boards harbor bacteria. In fact, if you toss that plastic board into the sink and think “I’ll deal with it later”, the bacteria are multiplying on it rapidly. Now think about all the cuts on your board. Those are like the Mariana Trench of bacteria. Each gouge makes that board harder to clean, increasing the risk of bacteria living on your board and coming into contact with your food the next time you use it. Wooden cutting boards are actually anti-bacterial. In fact, even when an abundance of bacteria was left on a wood cutting board for 12 hours in a humid environment, at least 98% of bacteria was gone. This doesn’t mean you don’t have to clean the boards, but it’s nice to know that the wood will take care of any bacteria I miss! Bacteria aside, studies have also shown using plastic cutting boards can introduce microplastics into your food. The Sustainable Choice North Castle Hardwoods ensures that only mature wood is harvested by our trained foresters and loggers. Our sustainably managed forests are selectively harvested to produce the best quality wood, and to leave the forests in better shape after harvesting. This ensures healthy forests and a renewable resource that will be available for generations to come. When a wood cutting board has outlived its usefulness, it can be composted. Unfortunately, plastic cutting boards will take hundreds to thousands of years to break down. Don’t forget that as plastic breaks down, it also releases microplastics which can eventually find their way into our water. Wood Enhances Flavor and Protects Knives Wood can actually give your food a subtle flavor, especially when new or newly seasoned! Some consumers love this aspect, especially for charcuterie boards. Different woods offer a different strength of flavor. As you use the board and continue to clean and oil it, this flavor can disappear.Cheap plastic cutting boards may have a strange odor and that can translate into flavoring your food as well- and not in a good way. This can happen both with new boards, and boards that have not been properly cleaned. Wood cutting boards are also gentler on your knives than plastic. The key to a high-quality cutting board is to use the right wood. You want a nice hardwood, like maple, walnut, cherry, or beech. These woods are hard enough to stand up to frequent cuts and pressure, but not so hard that they will impact your knives. Cheaper wood boards made with materials like bamboo are much rougher on your knives than a quality hardwood.Plastic will also wear down your knives. It’s nearly impossible to find a plastic board that is hard enough to stand up to being cut on, but yielding enough to keep your knives sharp. Explore Our Premium Wood Cutting Boards and Kits Today! If you’re interested in creating your own gorgeous cutting board, we have several pre-cut cutting board kits that will create a beautiful board, no matter your woodworking skill level! You can also purchase a premade cutting board and pretend you made it. Don’t tell my mom I didn’t really make that stunning board she admires every time she comes to visit. Conclusion From safety to durability, a high-quality wood cutting board is worth the investment. Not only does it add a beautiful aesthetic to your kitchen, but it’s a piece that will be with you for years to come. Visit North Castle Hardwoods today and treat yourself to a quality cutting board. Be sure to take a look at the Cherry cutting board “Fuji”. It’s my personal favorite, and I’m sure you will love it as much as I do.  

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wooden box connected by box joints

How to Cut Box Joints: Easy Step-by-Step

Learn about box joints, a sturdy woodworking joint for right angles, and how to cut them by hand or with machinery.

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Hard Maple vs Soft Maple - Differences and Uses

Hard Maple vs Soft Maple - Differences and Uses

Explore the differences between hard and soft maple, learn how both types are used to create stunning woodworking projects.

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A Complete Guide to Types of Wood Grain Patterns

A Complete Guide to Types of Wood Grain Patterns

Explore the complete guide to wood grain pattern types. From open grain to fine grain, and everything in between.

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