Frequently asked questions:
What is the difference in Dead-Head Cypress and Sinker Cypress?
Absolutely nothing. “Dead Head” and “Sinker” basically means it has been submersed under water and in rare occasions, underground or in mud for over 100 years.
What is Pecky Cypress?
This is Cypress wood that in certain parts of the log, is in the early stages of decomposition from either a fungus or enviormental effects. It has “holes” in it. Pecky Cypress is harder to find due to it being found in limited logs. You actually don’t know if the log has Pecky in it until the log is cut. Pecky Cypress can be in New Growth Cypress and Dead Head Cypress. It is a very desired wood due to the rarity and unique appearance.
What exactly is Red Heart Cypress and how do you feel about this wood compared to the other Cypress woods?
Red Heart Cypress is found in what is considered to be a New Growth tree that tends to be old in age. It is the heart of the tree and has a similar color as the much desirable, Dead-Head. We at Cordrays do not offer this wood for a couple of reasons. It is considered to be the “inexpensive” Dead-Head due to the coloring but it is a very brittle wood. Clients who have used this version of Cypress in the past inevitably have regrets due to the problems that occur upon installation. We consider it to be a mediocre product and is average when used in smaller widths. We strongly suggest if you are speaking to someone who is trying to produce this wood for you to ask for a guarantee.
What exactly is Antique Heart Pine?
Antique Heart Pine is an old growth tree that was cut down over 100 years ago. It was 500 – 1500 years old when cut. It has been submersed in water and on rare occasions, mud or dirt. This is the only way a tree of this nature could still be in pristine condition today. Otherwise, it would have decomposed. It has a very tight grain and has a beautiful golden/ orangish hue in color.
I have been looking on the internet and comparing prices. Why can I find some products so inexpensive compared to you?
When you are comparing prices, you must first make sure you are dealing with the exact same product. Unfortunately there are companies who will tell you they are absolutely selling you heart pine. Your first red flag should be the mere price of the product. If someone is selling you something they refer to as heart pine or antique heart pine for 2.00 a square foot, be aware! They are selling you some new growth pine from a Southern Yellow, Spruce or Lob-Lolly Pine tree. We do not offer any of these woods at Cordrays. We take great pride in the quality of our products and anything other than a Long-Leaf Pine tree is sub-standard in our grading system. Another question you need to ask when looking at different options is what are the lengths of the boards in which you are inquiring. Companies that have a very low price point will not be supplying long length boards. They usually get their product from other companies that consider it to be “scrap” lumber. The longer the boards, the higher the quality. Cordrays Mill only supplies long length boards unless specified by the client.
What is “Quarter Sawn”?
Quarter sawn is a skill that takes years to master. If you purchase Quarter Sawn lumber, you are investing in a cut of wood provided by a master woodsman. It is when you take the heart of the pine tree and quarter it and then saw it so that each quarter matches perfectly. Some people in the Industry call it “vertical grain”. We agree with this but it is actually more than just a vertical grain. The grain in a quarter sawn piece of wood will be perfectly centered. When you use this method of cutting, you yield less lumber than just a straight cut but the quality is unsurpassed. All of Cordrays Heart Pine is quarter sawn.
What is “Hand Hewn”?
This is when wood has been cut or shaped with hard blows of a heavy cutting instrument like an ax or chisel. This is common on reclaimed beams from the 1800 and early 1900’s. The Hand-Hewn finish is highly desirable with designers and builders that specialize in trying to produce authentic applications with lumber. Cordrays is the only Lumber Company who can reproduce this finish on beams and lumber up to 40 foot in length.
What are the hardest woods to the softest?
Hardest – Walnut, Pecan and Hickory. Less hard of Hard woods – Maple, Ash, Red and White Oak, Cherry and Heart Pine. These are still considered to be hard woods but are not as hard those listed above. Not considered hard wood but is a specialty wood – Cypress, Cedar and Southern Yellow Pine.
What is “new growth” and “old growth”?
Old growth is a tree that has been cut down over 100 years ago and was 500-2000 years old when cut. New growth is a tree that has not been cut down previously. Yes, you may find some new growth trees that are 500 years old and yeild a very tight grain. These are still considered to be new growth because they are alive, then cut, then produced for lumber.
What exactly is distressed wood?
Distressed wood refers to a finish in texture on a piece of wood. Some examples are: Hand- Hewn, Circle Saw marks, nail holes, etc. Most all reclaimed lumber has inherent distressed marks.
How long are the average boards at Cordrays Mill Lumber Company?
We produce lumber and beams up to 40 ft in length. Our standard length is 8-12 ft boards. This is a true sign of the quality you find at Cordrays. We do not up charge for anything less than 12 ft.
What widths do you carry and which ones are recommended?
We can produce any width starting at 2 inches, up to 48 inches. With flooring we strongly recommend 7 inch boards or less. If you go for a wider board, you risk “cupping”. This is when the board will arch a little in the center regardless of the moisture content. Though 12 inch boards are beautiful in flooring, it will eventually have a “cup” to it that will require considerable sanding to get back to level boards.
What wood do you recommend for beams?
The longer the beam, the stronger the wood requirement. We recommend using Cypress or Heart Pine due to the tightness of the grain in these woods. The tighter the grain, the stronger the wood. Cordrays can produce specialty beam sizes up to 40 feet in length.