1. Hi Keith,

      Paul says: Paul used 1” stock which is generally always milled oversize to allow for planing. Still, if you’re a little under the ⅞”, it would make little difference.


  1. It depends. For many parts, the 7/8″ doesn’t need to be exact. Aprons would be an example in many cases. If I end up 1/16 shy or even 1/8 shy, it likely won’t matter, so I buy 4/4 knowing that there’s a good chance I’ll get the 7/8. If the part is shorter, I’m even more confident. If the particular piece of 4/4 has little cup or twist, again I’m more confident. Sometimes, I don’t really need to have both surfaces clean, like on many table aprons. In that case, I don’t need to take as much off and can leave it somewhat rough on one side. With our methods of layout and joinery, if the piece marked 7/8 comes out as something else, like 13/16 or 3/4, it doesn’t change how I do the joinery (but I must take some care), so I can make it work. On the other hand, if I just need 7/8 no matter what and there’s no time or latitude for a re-do, like maybe for a table leg where 3/4 would look wrong, then I may buy 5/4. My inclination is to make the 4/4 work whenever I can because otherwise I’m just buying wood to throw away as shavings.

  2. This is such real life woodworking here. I work at a sawmill and I wish more people understood the ability to work around a slight bow, or one board not completely cleaning up at the same thickness as the others, or perhaps losing an extra 1/16” when the sticker stain was deeper than expected. Some people want 8/4 soft maple cleaned up both faces, dead flat and straight 1 7/8” finished and it’s just not always possible or even necessary.

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