Reading a Log for Ray Fleck

      If you understand what ray fleck is, you can tell which logs have it. January 14, 2009

What exactly causes the ray fleck in quartersawn lumber, and is it something that is in all lumber that is quartersawn?

Forum Responses
(Sawing and Drying Forum)
From Professor Gene Wengert, forum technical advisor:
Ray fleck is caused by the presence of large rays in the wood. The ray cells run radially, so they are not special on flatsawn lumber. In radially or quartersawn lumber, they are sawn parallel to their length, so they create an interesting pattern. It is obvious only in lumber with large rays.

From contributor A:
You can see the lines in the end of a log, and the thicker, longer, and straighter will make the best qsawn lumber. The photo is of a red oak. The lumber has rays as long as 6 inches in the boards. I look for this in logs and look for logs over 18 inches dib for the most part. Sycamore, oaks, cherry, dogwood are a few that make good rays, along with beech and others. Reading the log is important and you want to saw even with the pith to keep the rays down the face of the boards.

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