Cedar wood question

I found some cedar at the local hardware store that doesn't look like normal cedar - it's all quite dark, but it has that cedar smell and rough-sawn very splintery feel. It's labeled as rough cedar GRN lumber. My concern is that it is very heavy compared to every other cedar board I have seen. It only comes in 2x4 size and it's inexpensive, so it tempting. 

Has anyone else comre across this type of cedar? 

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RE: Cedar wood question

WesternRed Cedar's the lighter stuff, both in weight and color usually.

Just where is 'local' for you? There's an antique mall in an old lumber yard shed ten minutes north of me that three or four years ago had literally hundreds of rough-sawn, live edged 8/4 red cedar planks stickered in an unused section away from their other offerings. There's quite a few Amish sawmills around too so that may have been their source, or maybe not.

But they're gone now.

This stuff was more the aromatic cedar, used for lining closets & building saunas (area was settled by Norwegians early in the 19th century), and a deeper red, almost purple, and much heavier than WRC.

Knotty too, with twisted grain that'd tax anyone working with a hand plane. My suspicion is that's what you're describing. The GRN tag may mean that it's green, as in recently felled & just sawn into lumber, maybe air dried a little but certainly not kiln-dried. This stuff's actually a juniper, not a true cedar.


- makes for good reading.

RE: Cedar wood question

what you are describing is western red cedar and it is the same species of tree that is sold for strips at CLC.  western red cedar can have a lot of variation in color ranging from almost blond to dark brown and anywhere in between.

while it is the same species of cedar that is used for kayak building, there are, however, two significant differences.

1) green means it is not kiln dried or even air dried.  any cedar used for kayak building should be dried.  it is very problematic to build with 'wet wood'.  the epoxy lamination process won't work well becuase if the boat gets hot, the moisture in the wood will become water vapor and will impact the epoxy causing delamination.   and you are right.  it is heavy.  green lumber can have several times the water weight of kiln dried lumber.   in a nutshell, if you want to mix wood and epoxy, you want as little moisture in the wood as possible.

2) rough means a lot of knots relative to the grade of cedar board that is used to build a kayak....where the boards may typically be clear/no knots.   

so while tempting from a price point, i would not work with green rough cedar for a strip built boat..


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