Buying Slabs? Learn the difference between our Dry/Surfaced and Rough Sawn Slabs

Jewell Hardwoods Slab Showroom Oregon City, Oregon

When you go to our Online Slab Inventory Portal and click on the picture of a slab, you will see a vertical list of the specifications of that slab. One of the Categories is SURFACE CONDITION. Please familiarize yourself with what each of the 2 categories are. It will help you to choose which slab is best for your project.

Dry/Surfaced Slabs

1)Surface Condition: Dry/Surfaced: this category is pictured on grey carpet with the 9ft yard stick on the right. These slabs are fully planed on the front and skip planed on the back. The front picture shown is after the slab has been lightly wet down to show the color and grain.

After we have dried & surfaced our slabs we have a 99.9% success rate of them staying flat. This is due to the moisture content in the middle of the slab being low and stable. Our 99.9% “Flat success rate” is what makes our clients come back again and again.¬†
When you call or email for details, it is important that you tell us if your finished project will have a Straight Edge or not. This will help us determine if the total width after you trim off the live edge will provide you with the minimum width you need.

Rough Sawn Slabs- A Woodworkers Diamond in the Rough
Green Off the Sawmill

2). Surface Condition – Rough Sawn
“Rough Sawn” slabs that you see on the Slab Portal are photographed green off the sawmill with dimensions written on them before they have dried. You will notice these pictures are outside either on the ground or on the forklift. After we get photos and dimensions written, they are stickered and stacked to air dry under cover for 2 years and kiln dried 3-4 months.

After they are taken out of the kiln, we put the Green picture on our Live Slab Inventory Portal with the original dimensions for purchase.

It is Important to note: Oversized Rough Sawn slabs that are sold are generally 3″¬†thick and not surfaced. Even with carefully dried slabs, there is movement that takes place in the process. We have also found that there can be slight shrinkage from the dimensions written on the slabs when they are wet. It can sometimes be up to 1-2″ in the width or length after drying. So keep that in mind if you have very specific minimum dimensions, like a countertop that sits over cabinets. There may also be additional cracks that form in the drying process that are not seen in the green picture.

For the Dry/Surfaced slabs above we have taken the extra time to get any twist out of the slab during planing. This step hasn’t been taken for the oversized slabs. We have found many furniture makers have specific plans for their slabs and want to work it from its rough sawn state.

Important questions in choosing the right slab.

What is your target thickness and width for this slab? This will help us to estimate after you surface it, that you will be able to achieve the dimensions you are looking for.

Is your project Straight Edged or Live Edged? As most slab buyers know, Live Edge slabs have a natural slanted edge on the side. If your project is straight edged, we need work together and take into account any slant on the back side of that slab. This will determine after trimming if it will fit your final dimensions.

If you would like us to trim or flatten/surface your slabs prior to shipping, we can do that for you. Our shop rate is usually around $400, depending on the size of the slab. Contact us for a quote.

Dry Rough Sawn Walnut Slab Jewell Hardwoods
Air/Kiln Dried – Listed as Rough Sawn on Slab Portal. Not surfaced.