Sad state of affairs for SYP

MarkE

Mark
Corporate Member
I make a lot of items from SYP. Earlier this year the price for a 2x10x8' was $8.87 (Lowes, Home Depot, etc.). The price went all the way up to about $17 before it started to drop some.
I just bought a load from a local building supplies place (Guy C. Lee) for $11.46. I'm hoping the prices continue moving in the downward direction.

The article says there is an oversupply, but most places I check have been having a difficult time getting enough, or any is lot's of cases.
 

Gotcha6

Dennis
Corporate Member
Load tables give SYP a higher rating than SPF. It is definitely more dense with less deflection in equal spans with SYP, and usually the preferred lumber of choice when doing floor systems, trusses and LVL beams notwithstanding. Around CLT we've seen 7/16" OSB jump from ~$8.00/sheet to $29.50.
 

Jeff

Jeff
Corporate Member
Actually this weird thing of Spruce Pine Fir.
What's so weird about it? It can be any one of the three: Spruce, Fir, or Pine.


 

Henry W

HenryW
Senior User
What's so weird about it? It can be any one of the three: Spruce, Fir, or Pine.
Yes I realize that Jeff, but generally an acronym (for example SYP or MDF) is the name of ONE species or material, not a choice of three. That's all that's weird. Just humor me... I couldn't resist :) ;)
 

CrealBilly

Jeff
Senior User
2x4's etc are not SYP
Your partly right... Can be SPF - Spruce, Pine or Fir. However, if you read the article it says the big mill in canada shuttered for good. So I would expect to see a lot more pine in construction grade lumber, here in the USA, sooner rather than later.

I forgot to add, when talking modern construction... SYP is superior to SPF. For example, trusses are mainly SYP because it offers greater strength and longevity than SPF. Expecially SYP heartwood, if it will grade to #2 or better.

Here in my neck of the woods there is very little SYP. It's mainly White Pine which is basically junk when exposed to outdoor elements. It's also a lot weaker and a heck of a lot lighter (less dense) then SYP. But even still, it's made into dimensional lumber, because it's still Pine.
 
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Jeff

Jeff
Corporate Member
Yes I realize that Jeff, but generally an acronym (for example SYP or MDF) is the name of ONE species or material, not a choice of three. That's all that's weird. Just humor me... I couldn't resist :) ;)
In this case it's not an acronym. There is no choice-all three species are lumped together and you can't pick and choose at Lowe's or Home Depot. I wasn't being difficult and you didn't say what you thought was "weird" about it. Sorry.
 

junquecol

Bruce
User
Remember Trumps tariffs? Well Canada is shipping NO WOOD to the US right now. Tariffs are set to expire on Nov 30th, which is a little more than a week away. Many mills shuttered due to Covid 19, expecting a huge down turn in building, which due historic low interest rates didn't happen. These mills will have difficulties getting labor force back. Same thing happend in recession of 2008, when over two million left the building work force, never to return. Add in some hurricanes in the gulf states, where demand for building materials has soared, beyond the ability of local mills to supply their needs. OSB, and plywood are being fed there from mills all over the country, instead of locally produced sheet goods. Son works for a builder, and their suppliers call them after 4:00 PM to tell them whether or not their next day delivery is coming. Suppliers are unloading directly from rail car / trailer to delivery trucks, with no inventory on the yard. Plus stay homers are doing many DIY projects, further increasing demand. Today, north bound local freight passing thru Apex had nine cars, seven with framing lumber, and two with sheet rock. Normally here, sheet rock comes by truck from either Charlotte, Savanah, or Wilmington, not rail car. By rail shipments, it means it's coming from farther away
 

CrealBilly

Jeff
Senior User
I can't image 90 acres of 30 year old planted SYP bringing in just 160k. That's totally unheard of... It's like saying each tree is worth less than a case of empty aluminum soda cans, it can't be true.

500 planted SYP trees per acre was common when i lived in NC. If you take 500 x 90 acres = 45,000 trees. A 30 year old SYP would saw 1000 bf easy. That's 45 million BF of timber your looking at. So 160,000 divided by 45,000,000BF your talking about .0035 per BF on the stump or little north of $3.50 a tree. That's flipping insane! A 7' christmas tree is way more valuable. Yet we're paying almost $5.00 for a flipping 2x4-8 of typically less quality spruce - WTF?

More:
www.wsj.com/amp/articles/thousands-of-southerners-planted-trees-for-retirement-it-didnt-work-1539095250
 
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zapdafish

Steve
Senior User
I buy my yellow pine from the hardwoodstore, much nicer than borg syp. I dont know how the pricing compares tho or how their stock is these days.
 

Oka

Casey
Corporate Member
Yes Southern Yellow Pine is much better framing material than the SPF. Usually SPF is the Coastal or Blue spruce, Various quick growing pines or white pine or varieties of hemlock fir or relatives. SPF is really good for interior wall construction. Never use it in outdoor applications.
On the West Coast we used Douglas Fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii). Not a true fir but a type of Larch which in many ways is superior to SYP. It twists less drying., less prone to splitting when nailing and has the highest Modulus of Elasticity (MOE). On the west coast it is usually cheaper than other woods, just depends when you get it. As of last week it was about 4 bucks for a 2x4x8. Here in Hawaii most of our framing wood is Borate treated, so here locally it is about 5.50 for a 2x4x8........ 2 years ago the same was 4 bucks for the same stud. This is why I have been buying so much hardwood ply. @ 5 bucks a sheet more than ACX, there is no real saving buying it.
The plywood they used in my house (built 45 years ago) is redwood-ply often wonder how much that would be today, if it is even made anymore.


Load tables give SYP a higher rating than SPF. It is definitely more dense with less deflection in equal spans with SYP, and usually the preferred lumber of choice when doing floor systems, trusses and LVL beams notwithstanding. Around CLT we've seen 7/16" OSB jump from ~$8.00/sheet to $29.50.
 

CrealBilly

Jeff
Senior User
Yes Southern Yellow Pine is much better framing material than the SPF. Usually SPF is the Coastal or Blue spruce, Various quick growing pines or white pine or varieties of hemlock fir or relatives. SPF is really good for interior wall construction. Never use it in outdoor applications.
On the West Coast we used Douglas Fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii). Not a true fir but a type of Larch which in many ways is superior to SYP. It twists less drying., less prone to splitting when nailing and has the highest Modulus of Elasticity (MOE). On the west coast it is usually cheaper than other woods, just depends when you get it. As of last week it was about 4 bucks for a 2x4x8. Here in Hawaii most of our framing wood is Borate treated, so here locally it is about 5.50 for a 2x4x8........ 2 years ago the same was 4 bucks for the same stud. This is why I have been buying so much hardwood ply. @ 5 bucks a sheet more than ACX, there is no real saving buying it.
The plywood they used in my house (built 45 years ago) is redwood-ply often wonder how much that would be today, if it is even made anymore.
I have an 8'x16' tack room in my barn that is covered in 1/2" redwood plywood. Also there is a corner of the barn also covered in redwood plywood. This winter I'm going to take it all down and use it to build an 8'x16' Chicken & Turkey coop.
 

Sourwould

Taylor
Senior User
I'm going to argue a little bit on yellow pine is better than spruce.

Syp is stronger and deflects less than spf (the gap is closing as syp is over harvested and gets lighter and weaker). But which is "better" depends more on the grade and application.

When I framed in asheville we used "framer's series" yellow pine, it's a brand name. It was straight and heavy, cut closer to the center of trees, less wane. The yellow pine available in durham is ugly, twisty, want, knotty, and light. The spruce is generally straighter, especially if you get blue tip studs.

Spruce makes better studs that yellow pine, in my opinion. It moves less if it's dry enough to start with and I see less crown on spruce.
 

Gotcha6

Dennis
Corporate Member
I did a commercial building a few years back that had 2 x 6 x 12' exterior studs. The engineer specified spruce. The lumber supplier sent German Spruce, which appeared to be more dense than North American Spruce to the point that the framers thought it to be Kiln Dried Yellow Pine. Funny how it works that way sometimes. BTW, I have never seen anything other than SYP used in ACQ or CCA (now prohibited) treated applications unless it was a custom treatment, like oak flooring for a trailer.
 

Sourwould

Taylor
Senior User
I did a commercial building a few years back that had 2 x 6 x 12' exterior studs. The engineer specified spruce. The lumber supplier sent German Spruce, which appeared to be more dense than North American Spruce to the point that the framers thought it to be Kiln Dried Yellow Pine. Funny how it works that way sometimes. BTW, I have never seen anything other than SYP used in ACQ or CCA (now prohibited) treated applications unless it was a custom treatment, like oak flooring for a trailer.
Iirc the yellow pine takes the treatment better. I used to work with a west coast carpenter and he said that the pt out there was fir. The fir didn't soak up the treatment well and that's why the manufacturer punched all those little perforations into the faces of the lumber.

You can still get cca on special order! Woot! Though I'm about to replace the frame on my crawl door and I'm going to use white oak instead of pt.
 

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