Quarter Sawn Oak Beam

Quarter Sawn Oak Beam


A quarter sawn oak beam is a specialized type of lumber that originates from the oak tree. This particular product owes its name to the unique sawing technique employed in its production, the "quarter sawing" process.

This technique involves the oak log being initially quartered lengthwise, resulting in four sections. Then, each section is cut at a right angle to the tree's growth rings. This method of sawing is deliberately chosen as it creates a beam that displays a straight grain pattern. The radial cut exposes the medullary rays or "flake" in the oak, a unique characteristic that produces a distinctive and highly desirable striped or figured pattern on the face of the beams.

Quarter sawn oak beams possess superior dimensional stability. They are less likely to cup, twist, or warp, making them a high-quality choice for a wide range of applications. This increased stability comes from the alignment of the wood cells, which are vertical in quarter sawn oak beams rather than horizontal, as seen in other methods like plain or flat sawing.

Let's compare quarter sawn oak beams with other types:

  • Rough Sawn Oak Beams: These are oak beams that have been sawn but not yet finished or planed. They still have a rough texture from the sawing process. While they might not have the refined look of quarter sawn oak beams, they offer a rustic appeal.
  • Select Sawn Oak Beams: This is a high-quality grade of oak beam that has fewer knots and defects. While they might be cut using different methods, quarter sawing could be used to achieve the "Select" grade due to the method's precision and the beautiful grain pattern it produces.
  • Clear Sawn Oak Beams: Clear sawn means that the beam is free from defects and has a uniform appearance. This is typically a higher grade of lumber. Quarter sawn oak beams could fall into this category if they are free of knots and other defects.
  • Solid Sawn Beams: This term refers to beams that are cut from a single piece of wood, as opposed to being glued together from smaller pieces. A quarter sawn oak beam is a type of solid sawn beam since it is cut from a single piece of oak.

What are the trees used for quarter sawn beam?

  • Oak: The White Oak species is Quercus alba, and Red Oak is Quercus rubra. These species are favored for their strength, appealing grain, and overall longevity when transformed into quarter sawn beams.
  • Maple: The Sugar Maple is Acer saccharum, and the Black Maple is Acer nigrum. These species provide durable hardwood with a subtle grain pattern, making them suitable for quarter sawn beams.
  • Cherry: Prunus serotina, commonly known as American Black Cherry, is often chosen for quarter sawn beams. It offers a warm reddish-brown hue and a fine straight grain.
  • Ash: White Ash, known botanically as Fraxinus americana, and European Ash, known as Fraxinus excelsior, are both good options for quarter sawn beams due to their high strength and straight grain.
  • Walnut: Juglans nigra, or Black Walnut, provides dark and highly sought-after hardwood. When quarter sawn, it displays an attractive and intricate grain pattern.
  • Mahogany: West Indian Mahogany (Swietenia mahagoni) and Big-Leaf Mahogany (Swietenia macrophylla) are both known for their workability, beautiful reddish-brown tones, and wide use in luxury woodworking.

Different Types of Wood Products Made from Quarter Sawn Oak Beam

Quarter Sawn Oak Beams are versatile and used to craft a wide range of wood products. These include flooring, furniture, cabinetry, paneling, and even musical instruments. Their unique grain pattern, strength, and stability make them suitable for high-end applications where aesthetics and longevity are paramount.

Ideal Size and Applications of Quarter Sawn Oak Beam

The ideal size of a Quarter Sawn Oak Beam typically depends on its intended use. For structural purposes in construction, beams of sizes 6x6, 8x8, or larger are often used. They are ideal for both interior and exterior applications, including architectural detailing, structural support in buildings, and landscaping elements.

Benefits of Quarter Sawn Oak Beam

Quarter Sawn Oak Beams are highly sought after for several reasons. They possess superior stability and resistance to warping, twisting, and cracking. The quarter sawing process also reveals a beautiful, unique grain pattern which is aesthetically appealing. Moreover, oak is known for its high resistance to insect and fungal attack, contributing to its longevity.

Cons of Quarter Sawn Oak Beam

On the downside, Quarter Sawn Oak Beams can be more expensive than other types of wood beams due to the intensive process of quarter sawing. Additionally, oak is a dense wood, which can make it more challenging to work with compared to softer woods.

Treated Options for Quarter Sawn Oak Beam

For enhanced durability, especially in outdoor applications, Quarter Sawn Oak Beams can be treated with a variety of protective coatings or treatments. These may include weather-resistant sealants, or anti-insect and anti-fungal treatments.

Additional Tips

It's recommended to hire professionals or consult with a wood expert when using Quarter Sawn Oak Beams for construction or remodeling projects to ensure proper handling and installation. Also, regular maintenance with appropriate wood care products will keep these beams looking their best and prolong their lifespan.

Where can I buy Quarter Sawn Oak Beam?

Discover high-quality quarter sawn beams at Forestry. Trust us to provide top-notch options that meet your quarter sawn beams. With our commitment to quality and customer satisfaction, find the perfect quarter sawn beams for your project. Contact us now to explore our extensive selection.

  • We offer wholesale and bulk buying options for quarter sawn beams
  • Wide variety of quarter sawn beams
  • Variety of grades and treatment options
  • Knowledgeable team
  • On-time completion
  • Satisfaction guarantee


Solid sawn beams are a versatile and durable building material that can be used in a variety of applications. They are strong, durable, and beautiful, and they can add a touch of elegance to any space. However, they can be more expensive than other types of wood beams, and they can be difficult to transport and install.


  1. How long do Quarter Sawn Oak Beams last?
  2. With proper maintenance, Quarter Sawn Oak Beams can last for many decades, or even centuries. Their durability and resistance to decay contribute to their long lifespan.

  3. Can Quarter Sawn Oak Beams be used outdoors?
  4. Yes, but for outdoor applications, it's recommended to use treated beams or apply a suitable protective finish to guard against weather damage and pests.

  5. What is the difference between quarter sawn oak beam and rift sawn oak beam?
  6. Rift sawn oak beams are also cut from the log so that the growth rings are perpendicular to the face of the beam. However, rift sawn oak beams are cut so that the annual rings run parallel to each other. This results in a more uniform appearance than quarter sawn oak beams.

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Reviews (5)

January 10, 2022

Beauty and Strength Personified

Absolutely love the stunning grain patterns on my quarter sawn oak beams! Not just beautiful, they've proven remarkably sturdy in construction.

February 18, 2022

Remarkable Stability

Opted for quarter sawn oak beams in my new kitchen - no sign of warping or twisting. Superb stability! Highly recommend for peace of mind.

March 20, 2022

Sustainability at Its Bes

Chose quarter sawn oak beams for their sustainable sourcing. Eco-conscious building never felt better, and they look gorgeous too!

May 5, 2022

An Artisan's Dream

As a furniture maker, the workability and aesthetic appeal of these quarter sawn oak beams are unmatched. They elevate my craftsmanship to new levels.

June 22, 2022

Durability and Versatility Combined

Used quarter sawn oak beams for a remodel - amazed by their strength, adaptability, and look. A solid choice for diverse projects.