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Industry Terms and Definitions

Below you can find a glossary of terms related to the lumber and timber industry to help you better understand SPTP’s products and services and how they can benefit your organization. 


Surfaced one side and one edge


Surfaced one side and two edges


Surfaced two edges


Surfaced two sides


Surfaced two sides and one edge


Surfaced four sides


The outer layers of growth between the bark and the heartwood that contain the sap


Small particles of wood removed by the saw in cutting


Log category used for sawing lumber and timbers


A manufacturing plant in which logs are converted to lumber by running them through a series of saws


1. A worker in a sawmill who operates the headrig, or main saw, making the initial cuts on a log 2. In the early logging days, one who felled trees and sawed them into logs; these workers are now called fallers and buckers, respectively

Scale ticket

Weight ticket; a tag attached to the end of a log after it has been scaled; information obtained from scaling the log is written on the ticket


The process of evaporation and extraction of moisture from green or partially dried wood


A wall of embankment designed to prevent encroachment from the sea; can be made of wood, masonry, earth, or a combination of materials

Seed tree

A tree left standing in a logging operation to provide seed for natural regeneration of the logged–over area


1. A high–quality piece of lumber graded for appearance; select lumber is used in interior and exterior trim, and cabinetry; it is most often sold S4S in a 4/4 thickness but may also be produced S2S in a variety of thicknesses usually for remanufacturing 2. A grade of Canadian exterior plywood


1. A lengthwise grain separation between growth rings, or a break through the rings (radial shake), usually the result of high winds; among the recognized types and degrees of shake are: fine, slight, medium, open, cup, round, ring, shell, through, and pith 2. Roofing material produced from wood (most often a Cedar); shakes have at least one surface with a natural grain textured split surface


A very thin slice of wood that is produced when planing lumber and timbers


1. Lumber that has been worked to make a lapped, or rabbeted joint on each edge so that pieces may be fitted together snugly for increased strength and stability 2. A similar pattern cut into plywood or other wood panels used as siding, to assure a tight joint


The theory and practice of controlling the establishment, composition, care, and development of stands of trees to achieve the objectives of management


A mechanized piece of logging equipment used to drag, or skid, logs from the cutting area to the landing; skidders usually have wheels and rubber tires, rather than endless tracks such as those found on crawler tractors


The exterior portion of a log removed by the saw, having one flat and one curved surface


Debris such as limbs, bark, broken pieces of logs, etc., left over after a logging operation

Slash pine

Pinus Elliottii; one of several pine species grouped under the designation of southern yellow pine; slash pine is native to the southeastern and Gulf coast states; it is fast growing and matures early; its wood closely resembles that of the longleaf pine a member of the SYP group

Slasher saw

A type of reciprocating saw used for cutting logs to length


A standing dead tree or portion of a tree from which most of the foliage, limbs, etc., have fallen

Southern yellow pine

A species group composed primarily loblolly, longleaf, shortleaf and slash pines; various subspecies also are included in the group; the southern yellow pine region refers to the southeastern United States, from Texas to Virginia


An identifiable group of trees or section of timber occurring in a particular area


1. Material carried in inventory for resale 2. To purchase materials for inventory; to stock up 3. The main stem of a tree


A horizontal timber used to support floor joists or other cross members


Refers to lumber that has been dressed by a planing machine for the purpose of attaining smoothness of surface and uniformity of size; surfacing may be done on one side or edge, or all sides