Stress wave sorting of red maple logs for structural quality

Xiping Wang, Robert J. Ross, David W. Green, Brian Brashaw, Karl Englund, Michael Wolcott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Existing log grading procedures in the United States make only visual assessments of log quality. These procedures do not incorporate estimates of the modulus of elasticity (MOE) of logs. It is questionable whether the visual grading procedures currently used for logs adequately assess the potential quality of structural products manufactured from them, especially those for which MOE is of primary concern. The purpose of this study was to investigate the use of stress wave nondestructive evaluation techniques to sort red maple logs for the potential quality of lumber obtained from them. Ninety-five red maple logs were nonde-structively evaluated using longitudinal stress wave techniques and sorted into four stress wave grades. The logs were then sawn into cants and lumber. The same procedure was used to obtain stress wave times in the cants and lumber. The lumber specimens were then dried and graded using a transverse vibration technique. The results of this study showed that good relationships existed between stress wave times measured in logs, cants, and the lumber produced from the logs. It was found that log stress wave grades have positive relationships with the lumber grades. Logs with high stress wave grades produced high-grade lumber. These findings indicate that the longitudinal stress wave technique has potential in sorting logs and cants for the production of high MOE products.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)531-537
Number of pages7
JournalWood Science and Technology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Apr 2004


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