5 Reasons Beech Might Be Four You

American Beech, (Fagus grandifolia), is not requested as often as other North American hardwood lumber species like Red Oak, Cherry or Walnut, but should it be? 

Beech hardwood lumberAmerican Beech, goes by a variety of names, such as Red Beech, White Beech, and Gray Beech. Most often found growing throughout forests in the eastern United States, it is primarily found in the states of New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, and Kentucky.

There is a lot to like about Beech, and after talking to customers here are a few thoughts we have as to why Beech could be a great option for some manufacturers.

1)    Price. In our opinion, one of the best characteristics of Beech is its price stability. Over the years, the price for Beech has been known to avoid huge, quick swings. In general, Beech is a species that retains a relatively stable price point for long periods of time making it very attractive for a manufacturer that is looking for more of a fixed lumber cost over a period of several months.

2)    Excellent working properties. American Beech has a reputation for working very well when used for chair legs and backs. This also makes it a popular choice for use in cabinets, flooring, and even mouldings & trim.

3)    Size. Beech trees typically grow to 100-130 feet tall with diameters of 3-5 feet. This means that it can be used to produce thick lumber with excellent average widths.

4)    Stains and paints well. The contrast between the heartwood and sapwood in Beech is generally low. This allows Beech lumber to take stain and paint very well and gives it the ability to mimic other more expensive hardwoods like Cherry.

5)    Tight grain. Beech grain patterns are tight and uniform. it machines well, has strong holding properties and is relatively dense. This makes it a common choice for tool handles and/or butcher blocks.

Time will tell, but perhaps as the availability of White Ash dwindles Beech could even become a suitable replacement for Ash lumber.

So, could Beech be the species for you? It might be worth some consideration. 

If you have any questions about Beech or any of the other hardwood species we offer let us know how we can help!

Tony C.
The Baillie Group
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