Why You’ll Love Rift and Quarter Sawn Oak Floors

Comfortable as your favorite blue jeans, you’ll love our rift and quartersawn White Oak floors. This photo is from a customer  home in East Hampton, New York. The stain used on the floor was a Minwax blend – 6 Golden Oak to 1 Honey.

For those of you interested in quarter and/or rift sawn wood floors, we’ve put together this post to show off some of the quarter and rift sawn wood floors we’ve made for clients lately.

florida beach house with white oak quarter and rift sawn wood floors.
White Oak select grade quarter and rift sawn custom wood flooring we made for a beach home in Key West, Florida. This floor has a clear poly finish.

We are always happy to send  samples of our wood floors, but sometimes it’s hard to tell from a single board how that look will translate across an entire room. We find nothing helps people make up their mind about a floor more than seeing finished room-setting photos. [Note:  If you have installed our wood flooring, we encourage you to send us a photo!]

Our rift and quartersawn select grade White Oak flooring in a Greenwich Village apartment,  featured in Dwell Magazine.

There is something very classic and comfortable about rift and quartersawn White Oak that makes it work with many decorative styles, from minimalist (as show in the Greenwich Village studio (above) to this more traditional Long Island home (below).

Quartersawn white oak flooring from Hull Forest Products.
Our select grade 8″ wide quartersawn White Oak floorboards in a Setauket, Long Island home. This floor has a light brown stain and a Sutherland Welles Murdoch tung oil finish.

At our sawmill, when we quarter and rift saw a log for flooring,  we first quarter the log,  then we slice into it, as show in second and third images of the diagram below.

Exhibit 1: Types of saw cuts and the look of the grain that is revealed on the face of the boards. Notice that the live sawn cut, which cuts straight through the log, contains all three grain types.

As a result, the radial and vertical grain of the wood is revealed instead of the tangential grain.  The rippled figure and flecks of medullary rays that you see in quarter sawn wood (second image from the left in Exhibit 1, above) are highlighted when the wood is cut this way. These ribbon-like cellular structures run perpendicular to the growth rings, and they are responsible for transporting nutrients to the tree via sap.

Close-up view of our quarter and rift sawn blend wood flooring, select grade, with medullary rays visible at top and bottom and rift sawn grain visible in the center.

In contrast, the rift sawn cut delivers grain with a very straight, uniform appearance and none of the wavy fleck, as shown in the photo below.

Rift sawn select grade White Oak has grain that is mostly straight and uniform, with none of the wavy fleck.

We can make you with a floor that is all quarter sawn grain, all rift sawn grain, or a blend of the two, which is a very popular look.  One of the benefits of quarter and rift sawn wood, besides the different grain pattern, is extreme dimensional stability. This makes quarter and rift sawn wood floors ideal for demanding installations, such as over radiant heat.

This Gramecery Park apartment features our rift/quarter sawn select grade wood floors, darkened with a Jacobean stain.
Upper East Side apartment with our rift and quartersawn select White Oak flooring.

Another way to change up the look of a quarter and rift sawn wood floor is to use a grade with character markings like the floor shown below.

Rift and quartersawn White Oak with knots, character markings, and skip planing has a vintage look and feel.

Visit our White Oak gallery and click on any photo to get specification and pricing information for any of our floors. Have questions about our floors? Give us a call 1-800-928-9602.

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