Planning is everything. There is nothing worse than trying to build something on the fly, and realizing that your finely crafted spice rack you built for your Mother-in-law, is a half inch too small. Why? Because you were’nt aware that a 1″ by 2″ is actually ¾” by 1½”.
When planning to build anything, I keep this handy dandy chart around. I can calculate my cut schedule and material usage, and buy accordingly.
I know you feel like you’re getting jacked when you buy a 2″ by 4″ and only get 1¾” by 3½”, but that’s just not how it works. When a log comes into the mill, it’s a fresh cut tree full of water. It’s milled down to 2″ by 4″ and heads into a drying facility. Once it’s all dryed out, you end up with the nominal dimensions of 1¾” by 3½”.
If you want to print out a copy or two of our Nominal Wood Dimensions chart, here’s a PDF for ya!