2×4 Quality Tips Video
If your next remodeling project involves purchasing some 2x4 studs, here are a few tips on selecting these boards. There are certain things to look for when you buy lumber. First, remember that 2x4s are not 2" x 4". They measure 1-1/2" x 3-1/2". Next, check for crown and bow.
Crown is any curve or bend in the stud when viewing it down the edge. A bow is a curve when looking down the side. It is okay to purchase some studs that have are crowned or bowed. But, you will also need straight studs. Straight studs will be required when working around doorways and at corners. You want these locations to have straight pieces of lumber.
To check for the possibility of the lumber twisting, look at the end grain. You are looking for vertical grain, where the 2x4 was cut out of the center of the tree. These generally indicate the 2x4s that are the most stable.
Some 2x4s will have defects on the edge. This is called the wane. The missing area will not be a problem if these studs are used as packing studs, used along side the door frame studs.
You can purchase a variety of 2x4 studs. Get some that are straight and some with bends or defects. They will find a place in your project. Just choice wisely.