A-GRADE - Plywood face grade with excellent appearance. Examples of use include cabinets and furniture. Also see Plywood Grades.
AIR DRIED - Wood, which has reached equilibrium with outdoors atmospheric humidity. Usually 12% depending upon location. Also see Kiln Dried.
ARCHITECTURAL GRADE VENEER - Top quality wood veneer made from select logs, usually in lengths greater than 2.65 meters.
B GRADE - Plywood face grade where the natural characteristics and appearance of the species are desirable. Also see Plywood Grades.
BACK - A low-grade veneer most commonly used as cross banding in plywood or for non-visible surfaces. Also referred to as Backing.
BALANCE MATCH - Two or more veneer components, or leaves, of equal size used to make a face.
BARBER POLE - This effect may occur when book matching veneer. Alternating tight and loose sides of the veneer causes contrasting light reflection on the finished surface.
BTR - Abbreviation for Better, a lumber grading term meaning the same as Select. Also see Select.
BETTER - a lumber grading term meaning the same as Select. Abbreviated as BTR. Also see Select.
BIRDSEYE - A figure found almost exclusively in hard maple. Variously scattered pin knots having an appearance similar to a bird's eye characterize it.
BLEACHED or BLEACHING - The removal of the natural wood color resulting in lightening of the color of the wood cells. May be accomplished by chemical processes.
BLUEPRINT MATCH PANEL - All panels are made to the exact size required, and in their proper face sequence, as determined by actual numbered blueprint locations.
BOARD FOOT - The unit of measurement used exclusively with lumber. A board foot is equal to twelve inches long and wide by one inch thick. It also designates any portion of a piece of wood totaling 144 cubic inches. The number of board feet in a piece of lumber can be determined by multiplying the length by with by thickness in inches and then divided by 144. The result will be the number of board feet and any fraction thereof. Also see Lineal Foot.
BOOK MATCH - Consecutive leaves of veneer or pieces of lumber are joined like the pages of an opened book resulting in a face of mirrored figure.
BOOK AND BUTT MATCH - Four pieces of veneer, usually burl figures, are book-matched side to side and butt matched end to end to make highly decorative veneer faces. Also known as Four-Piece Match.
BURL - Abnormal growths on the roots, trunks or branches of trees that may result from injury or disease. Inconsistent swirls and circular patterns typify the resulting figure.
BUTT MATCHING - Also known as End Matching. One leaf or entire faces are spliced end to end to create longer pieces of faces of veneer.
CATHEDRAL - A grain appearance characterized by a series of stacked and inverted "V" or cathedral type of pattern common in Flat Cut or Plain Sliced figure. Also see Flat Cut.
CENTER MATCH - An uneven number of veneer components or leaves of equal size are matched with a joint in the center of the panel, or face, to achieve horizontal symmetry.
COMB - Rift-cut veneer with exceptionally straight grain with growth increments closely spaced.
CROTCHWOOD - The "Flame" figure often found where the tree trunk splits into the primary branches. Often used to make Book and Butt faces.
CURLY - Curly figure results in trees where the cellular fibers grow in inconsistent, alternating directions, resulting in a wavy or curly appearance. Also see FIDDLEBACK.
DIAMOND MATCH - Usually done with straight grain figured veneers. Triangular cut pieces of veneer are joined with the figure running at a right angle to the adjacent piece, to make rectangular faces with a diamond pattern. Also see Reverse Diamond match.
END MATCHING - See Butt Matching.
FAS - Abbreviation for Firsts and Seconds, the grades given the highest quality lumber graded on both faces.
FACE - Either surface of a plywood panel. May also refer to the surface having the highest quality, in which case the opposite side is called the Back.
FAS/1F - Abbreviation for First and Seconds / 1 Face. The best face of a piece of lumber meets the requirements for FAS lumber. Also see FAS.
FIGURE - The pattern produced in a wood surface by annual growth rings, rays, knots, deviations from natural grain (such as interlocked) curly, and wavy grain and irregular coloration. Also see Grain.
FIDDLEBACK - Similar to curly figure except the waves are tighter and more consistent in appearance. Wood with this figure has been traditionally used for the backs of stringed musical instruments - most notably violins.
FIRSTS AND SECONDS - The grades given the highest quality lumber graded on both faces. Abbreviated as FAS.
FLAKE (FC)- The portion of a ray as it appears on the quartered or rift cut surface. Flakes are often a dominant appearance in quarter-cut oak.
FLAT CUT (FC)- Wood and veneer that has been cut or sliced parallel to the pith of the log. Characterized by cathedrals in the figure. May also be called Plain Sliced when referring to veneer figure. Also see Cathedral.
FLITCH - A bundle of veneer leaves stacked in the sequence as they are cut from the log or section of log.
FOUR PIECE MATCH - See Book and Butt match.
GHOST FIGURE - This term is generally applied to any cross figure which is not all prominent, but is noticeable from certain angles. Occasionally, this figure may reveal itself only after the surface has been finished.
GRAIN - The direction, size, arrangement, and appearance of the fibers in wood and veneer. Also referred to as Figure. Also see Figure.
GROSS TALLY - The measurement of hardwood lumber prior to kiln drying. Also see Net tally.
HALF ROUND - A method of veneer cutting similar to rotary cutting, except that the piece being cut is mounted to a device called the "stay log" that permits it to be cut in a wider sweep. This result in wider leafs of veneer that would occur by flat slicing. This method is commonly used with wood species that are only available in small diameters and with burls.
HEARTWOOD - The central portion of tree trunks and branches comprised of cells that no longer transports water and nutrients. The heartwood of many species may be significantly darker than the surrounding sapwood of hardwood species. Not usually distinguished in the softwoods. Also see Sapwood.
HERRINGBONE - This visual effect is accomplished by bookmatching veneer at opposing angles.
INLAY - Two or more contrasting species of veneer or wood joined to create decorative features in the finished design. Highly detailed inlays, which form detailed patterns or images, are called Marquetry.
JOINT - the common edge between to adjacent pieces of veneer or lumber.
KD - Kiln Dried. Used to qualify lumber that has been force-dried to less than 10% relative humidity.
KILN DRIED - Used to qualify lumber that has been force-dried to less than 10% relative humidity. Abbreviated as KD.
LINEAL FOOT - A measurement equals to the length of lumber or veneer and is priced by the lineal foot without regard to the width. Also see Board Foot.
LUMBER CORE - Veneer faced and backed panel with solid wood core made from sawn lumber.
LUMBER THICKNESS - Lumber 1 inch and thicker may be expressed in quarter inches, such as 1" = 4/4, 1.5" = 6/4, etc.
MARQUETRY - See Inlay.
MINERAL STREAKS - Natural discoloration found in some species of wood.
MDF CORE - Medium density fiberboard (MDF) wood fibers combined with a synthetic resin, faced and backed with veneer.
MOTTLE - Wood figure characterized by irregular, wavy fibers extending short distances across the exposed face.
NET TALLY - The measurement of hardwood lumber after it has been kiln dried. Also see Gross Tally.
PITH - The small, soft core occurring at the center of the tree trunk and branches.
PLAIN SLICED - See Flat Cut.
PLYWOOD GRADES - Grading system used to designate the quality of plywood faces. A and B represents the finest grades. C, D and E are used to represent sound surfaces while allowing for unlimited color variation. Also see A-Grade and B-Grade.
POMMELE - The intermingling of broken cross markings with ribbon stripe figure such as sapele.
QUARTER CUT (QC)- Also called Quarter Sliced when referring to veneer. Characterized by a straight grain figure when cut perpendicular to the growth rings.
QUARTER SLICED - See Quarter Cut.
QUILTED - This figure is found in veneers that have been sliced using the rotary or half-round methods. It is produced from logs with irregular "bumpy" growth characteristics.
RANDOM LENGTH - Pieces of lumber that have not been cut to consistent lengths. Abbreviated as RL.
RANDOM MATCHING - Veneer leaves are placed next to each other in a random order and orientation. This is often used to simulate a board to board appearance.
RANDOM WIDTH - Lumber that has not been dimensioned to consistent widths. Abbreviated as RW.
REVERSE DIAMOND MATCH - Usually done with straight grain figured veneers. Triangular cut pieces of veneer is joined with the figure running from the center to the outside edges. The resulting appearance is that of a series of "V's" pointing to the center of the panel. Also see Reverse Diamond match.
RGH - Abbreviation for Rough Lumber, or lumber which has not been surface planed.
RIBBON STRIPE - Plain stripe figure resulting from quarter slicing woods such as mahogany and sapele. This figure is straight and parallel through out the length of the wood and veneer.
RIFT-CUT (RIFT)- A straight grain appearance achieved through by cutting the log at a slight angle to the radial axis. This cutting method is most often used with oak species to minimize the appearance of rays.
RL - Random Length. Lumber which has not been cut to consistent lengths.
ROTARY CUT (RC)- This cutting method slices a continuous sheet of veneer off a log rotating on the pith axis - such as paper being pulled off a roll. Most often used in the production of plywood.
ROUGH LUMBER - lumber which has not been surface planned. Abbreviated as RGH.
RUNNING MATCH - Veneer faces made from consecutive leaves. Any portion of a component left over from the preceding face is used as the first piece in the next face or panel.
RW - Abbreviation for Random Width. Lumber that has not been dimensioned to consistent widths.
S2S - Surfaced 2 Sides. Lumber which has been planned on both wide surfaces.
SAPWOOD - The portion of the tree trunk and branches that transports water and nutrients. Usually less dense and durable than the heartwood. Also see Heartwood.
SEL - Select Grade. Lumber meeting the same requirements for FAS except as smaller minimum sizes.
SELECT GRADE - Abbreviated as SEL. Lumber meeting the same requirements for FAS except as smaller minimum sizes.
SEQUENCED MATCHED PANEL SETS - panel sets that are manufactured to a specific size and are sequentially numbered. Succeeding panels of the set are near identical but with a gradual change in grain pattern.
SHOP GRADE - Plywood that comes with knots, slightly split veneer faces, or dark and light colors. Typically 85% usable with 15% damage.
SLIP MATCHED - A leaf from a veneer flitch is slid across the sheet beneath and, without turning, is spliced at the adjacent edges.
SPLICE FACE VENEER - Face veneers that have been joined together in any one of several matching effects through the careful process of tapeless splicing.
STEAMED - The process in which green lumber is steamed in vats to darken the sapwood. Most commonly used with walnut.
SUNBURST MATCH - Pie-shaped pieces of veneer are book matched and edge joined to form a circular or semi-circular face.
VENEER CORE - Laminated veneer core, between the face and back, made from one or more layers.