Shocking Truth Exposed
After many years of keeping this secret, I just have to share the truth...a 2x4 is NOT really 2 inches by 4 inches!!?? Yes, you heard me correctly, there has been a horrible conspiracy going on for over 100 years...yikes.
So this may not be as exciting as say Trump vs. McCain, but it's worth a moment or two of your time...trivia at its' finest!
Most of us live in homes with a smaller version of dimensional framing lumber - 1.5" x 3.5" unless your home was built prior to 1910. Prior to WWI framing lumber was produced at local saw mills with a true measurement of 2" x 4" . The fine men working there ran the trees through the saw and the happy home-builder picked up the lumber up by horse and buggy to his new home site. (Obvious note - this was before women had the right to vote, stand up for herself or obviously build anything but a family :)
After WWI and the expansion of our fabulous rail road system saw mills were able to expand and provide lumber to lots of great folks building new homes, barns and all other fun stuff. Now that the price of shipping was based on weight, they needed an lighter version of lumber. So, the extraordinary American-Know-How kicked in and the saw mills started to kiln dry the lumber, reducing the moisture (weight) and dimension by roughly 1/2" on each side and 3/4" on smaller lumber.
Aren't you glad you kept reading? Here are the dimensions of common lumber for the record;
2x4 = 1.5" x 3.5"
2x6 = 1.5" x 5.5"
2x8 = 1.5" x 7.5"
1x4 = 3/4" x 3.5"
1x6 = 3/4 x 5.5"
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