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What is Wane?

Nov 21, 2013

36" x 36" x 27' Douglas Fir Weathered Timber with wane (click on photo for more photos of this timber); note that if this timber had been cut to minimize or eliminate wane, it would be a much smaller timber; note also that the wane is more pronounced on certain edges and on certain parts of edges than on others

Wane is defined on as "a defect in a plank or board characterized by bark or insufficient wood at a corner or along an edge, due to the curvature of the log."  Wane can be pronounced (as in the timber above) or more subtle (as in the timbers below.)  The amount of wane can vary significantly from one edge to another and even within an edge.

12" x 15" Trestlewood II Circle-Sawn Weathered Timbers with some wane

Wane on lumber can generally be reduced or eliminated by edging.  Whether this is desirable depends on your project and tastes (see Trestlewood's 8/27/2013 blog post, "Should Reclaimed Lumber Be Edged?")  


Where cutting a timber from a log/pole, one often must decide between cutting a large timber with some wane or a smaller timber with little to no wane.  We have found that many of our customers often prefer the larger timbers with some wane.


Wane, like other "defects," can add character to a reclaimed or other unique wood product.  Many of Trestlewood's products allow for the existence of some wane.  Some of Trestlewood's most popular products get much of their character and charm from wane.  Consider, for example, Trestlewood II Resawn Slabs (bright or weathered), Hand-Hewn Skins and Live Edge Mantels and Lumber.


Trestlewood's take is that if wane is a defect, it is often a desirable defect that helps create beautiful rustic reclaimed and other distinctive wood products.


2" Hand-Hewn Skins Siding - Exterior; the wane on hand-hewn skins adds to their character and charm

2" Hand-Hewn Skins - Interior 

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