Timber Grades


Through good silviculture management, New Zealand pine logs come in a range of qualities capable of yielding lumber grades to meet almost any requirement.

Appearance grades (board grades): for finishing and furniture uses can be either clear of knots or contain minor blemishes and tight knots.

They include:

  • clear lumber free of knots and large blemishes, used for high quality joinery, furniture and mouldings
  • cutting grades for reprocessing to produce shorter clear lengths with excellent machining, and gluing properties. These grades contain large knots and blemishes which are removed by cross-cutting and ripping. The resulting clear components are often finger-jointed and edge-glued to produce mouldings and furniture.

Structural grades (framing grades): used primarily for construction where strength and stiffness are important. The main factor influencing a structural grade is the size and location of knots. Grades limit such defects to meet specified strength requirements.

Industrial Grades: used in packaging for various products such as pallets, cable drums, and concrete formwork. Grades contain a range of knot sizes compatible with the final use.

New Zealand exporters are able to grade to most customer requirements. Common export grades include:

  • Australia – Standards Association of Australia F5 and F7 structural grades (visual and machine stress graded)
  • United States – Western Wood Products Association random width lumber specifications including mouldings and better, shop and factory grades.
  • Japan – JAS structural grade specifications (which also include glue-laminated and plywood grades). Industrial grades are also produced including thinboard and a range of other grades to buyer specification.
New Zealand Pine Lumber Grades  
Appearance Grades  
No. 1 Clears
Suitable for mouldings, furniture, where clear, long lengths are required.
NZ Pine - no1 clears



No. 2 Clears
Suitable for usage where one clear face, two clear edges are required.
NZ pine - no 2 clears



Clear Finger Jointed
Suitable for usage where timber is to be painted. e.g. sills, fascia, windows, or selected use where a clear finish is required.

NZ Pine - Clear Finger Jointed



Dressing Grade
A tight knot grade for use in furniture, paneling, and high quality exterior use.
NZ Pine - dressing grade



Manufacturing Grades  
No 1A Cuttings Grade
Each piece shall yield one 1.8 metre clear cutting, with balance of cuttings averaging 1.0 metre. Minimum of 70% recovery of clear cuttings.
NZ Pine - No 1A Cutting Grade Two sample boards
No. 1 Cuttings Grade
Each piece shall yield 70% of its length in clear cuttings 1.0 metre and over.
NZ Pine - No 1 Cutting Grade Two sample boards
No. 2 Cuttings Grade
Each piece shall yield 70% of its length in clear cuttings 0.600 metres and over.
NZ Pine - No 2 Cutting Grade Two sample boards
No. 3 Cuttings Grade
Each piece shall yield 60% of its length in clear cuttings of 0.300 metres and over.
NZ Pine - No 3 Cutting Grade Two sample boards
Merch Grade
A general utility grade. Economically used for workshop and warehouse shelving, framing for upholstery furniture and fence palings.
NZ Pine - Merch Grade Two sample boards
Packaging-Industrial Grade
Suitable for packaging, pallets and other industrial use.
NZ Pine - packaging grade Two sample boards
Random Width Grades  
Moulding & Better
NZ Pine - mouling and better
No. 1 Shop
NZ Pine - no1 shop grade
No. 2 Shop
NZ Pine - no2 shop grade


Sizes Available for All Lumber Grades

Thicknesses: 25mm, 32mm, 38-40mm, 50mm, 75mm, 100mm
Widths: 50mm, 75mm, 100mm, 125mm, 150mm, 200mm.
By Special Request: 250mm, 300mm
Lengths: 1.8 metres to 6.0 metres Other Lengths by special request

General Information

  • Timber is shown machined to clarify appearance. Can also be supplied sawn.
  • New Zealand producers will produce grades and sizes to customer requests and customise standard grades to meet specific needs.
  • Timber is available in a green sawn, unprocessed state through to kiln dried, machined and cut-to-length products.
  • Standard kiln drying is 10 to 12% moisture content.
  • New Zealand producers are also able to supply structural grades of lumber.

Reference: NZ Pine Manufacturers Association

Solid timber from a domestic timber yard will normally contain about 17 per cent moisture (by weight). After a few weeks in a centrally heated house, the moisture will drop to 8-10 per cent. As a result, the wood will shrink slightly and may also develop a curve. The wider the board the greater the problem.

Preferably avert this problem altogether by buying from us with correct MC specified ie 8-12% standard but can be 6-10% on request .

The shrinkage takes place along the length of the annular growth rings which follow the circular shape of the tree trunk. In most cases the rings are much shorter near one face of the board than the other. The longer rings shrink most and the shorter least, causing the board to curve across its width.

The straighter the rings in a board, the less it will curve, so look for boards that have the rings running almost vertically through the thickness. CALLED QUARTER SAWN. Where growth rings show running across the width of the board this is called FLATSAWN.

No matter how carefully something is made, wood that is too wet will develop distortions. So store timber in house for at least two or three weeks to allow it to dry out. OR EQUALISE .

Store boards flat, one above the other, with pieces of wood between them so that air can circulate.