Cedar Shingle Grades and Definitions

Old Growth Western Red Cedar being harvested to be made into Shingles

In North America shingles and shakes are typically made from California redwood (Sequoia sempervirens), Western Red Cedar (Thuja plicata), and in some cases, Alaskan Yellow Cedar (Cupressus nootkatensis); while in Scandinavia and Central Europe they are more commonly made from Pine (Pinus sylvestris).  Shingles are made from blocks that have been edge cut using a circular saw, where as shakes are split. Shingles can be used on roofs, as well as sidewalls.

Shingles are manufactured by clamping blocks of wood into a carriage that slides back and forth across a blade, tilting and moving the block closer to the blade with each pass to automatically form a tapered cut that is thin on one end and thicker on the other. The thickness at the“butt” (the thicker end of the shingle) is generally about 3/8”, but does vary. The final correct thickness for shingles is based using a stack of shingles, rather than a single piece.

Western Red Cedar Shingles
At Cedar Country Lumber, we offer a wide selection of shingles made from Western Red Cedar, as well as Alaskan Yellow Cedar, that will help you achieve the look you desire in a wide range of price points; from custom cut, dried and colored shingles to utility grade shingles that are much easier on the pocketbook, but perform admirably in any climate.

In today’s market place, Western Red and Alaskan Yellow Cedar Shingles are available in 3 common lengths

  • 16” ~ Also known as “Fivex”
  • 18” ~ Also known as “Perfection”
  • 24” ~ Also known as “Royals”

After the shingles are cut, when using the Cedar Shake & Shingle Bureau’s Certi-label grading system, they are graded into three main categories

  • Number 1 ~ Also known as “Blue Label”
  • Number 2 ~ Also known as “Red Label”
  • Number 3 ~ Also known as “Black Label”

Number 1 ~ the highest grade of shingles are 100% heartwood, 100% clear and 100% edge grain. Western Red Cedar Shingles in this grade are sometimes referred to as “Blue Label”, which is a Registered Certi-label trademark. These are available in 16”, 18” and 24” lengths in either Western Red Cedar or Alaskan Yellow Cedar. Our No. 1 Shingles are also available with a pressure impregnated fire retardant or preservative treatment.

Number 2 ~ a perfectly acceptable grade for many applications. Some flat grain and limited sapwood are permitted, however, there is not less than 10” clear on 16” shingles, 11” on 18’ shingles and 16” on 24” shingles. Western Red Cedar Shingles within this grade are sometimes referred to as “Red Label”.

Number 3 ~ a utility grade for economy applications; commonly used on sheds and utilitarian buildings or for starter courses for higher grades. Within this grade, there is not less than 6”clear on 16” and 18” shingles, 10” clear on 24” shingles. This grade of Western Red Cedar Shingles are sometimes referred to as “Black Label” due to the grading system put into place  by the Cedar Shake & Shingle Bureau.

Sidewall Cedar Shingles

Rebutted & Rejoined Cedar Shingles ~ Shingles that are sawn and re-manufactured on all four sides to ensure square butts and parallel edges for superior appearance on sidewall applications. Rebutted and Rejoined Shingles are available in Number 1 and Number 2 grades and are available in all three lengths (16”, 18” and 24”). These Shingles are commonly referred to as “R&R’s” and are predominately provided Kiln Dried and packaged in cartons, rather than bundles.

#1 R&R Western Red Cedar Sidewall Shingles

craftsmanship by Ravenhill Construction

 

Pre-stained Western Red Cedar Shingles

 

If desired, Western Red Cedar R&R Shingles can be provided with a sanded or machine grooved face, as well as pre-primed or pre-stained in nearly every color and hue imaginable.  There are also 6 “off the shelf” colors of pre-stained shingles that you can choose from.

 

Pre-stained Western Red Cedar Shingles

craftsmanship by Impel Construction

 

Fancy Cut Western Red Cedar Shingles ~ manufactured from #1 Western Red Cedar shingles into a variety of shapes that are 3” & 5” widths cut from 18” & 24” lengths; offered in 8 different shapes, with an endless variety of custom cuts and finishes available. These shingles add unique charm and character to gable ends, balconies, fences, entry ways, interior and exterior walls. To find out more, please click HERE

Western Red Cedar Fancy Cut Shingles

 

Because Western Red Cedar and Alaskan Yellow Cedar is only grown in the Pacific Northwest where Cedar Country is located, we are YOUR premium source for Cedar Shingles and Shakes. We ship nationwide from one bundle or carton to full truck loads and extremely competitive pricing ~ even with freight.

Before your next project, be sure to visit us!

www.CedarCountryLumber.com

Toll Free 866.757.6343

950 B Fountain Street, Burlington, WA

 

 

Alaskan Yellow Cedar Building Materials

Custom Milled Yellow Cedar T&G

In this photo – Custom Milled Alaskan Yellow Cedar T&G for a customer in New York

 A slow growing tree found along the Pacific Coast from Oregon through Canada, and up into Alaska, Alaskan Yellow Cedar trees can grow very tall, which makes it an ideal wood for large timbers used in timber frame construction.  It is also commonly referred to as Nootka Cypress.

Large Custom Cut Alaska Yellow Cedar Timbers

In this photo:  Custom Cut 8×8″ x 30′ long Alaskan Yellow Cedar Timber

We ship very large Alaskan Yellow Cedar Timbers anywhere in the US.

In this photo:  The 8×8″ x 30′ long Alaskan Yellow Cedar Timber is being loaded on to a flat bed truck for transport to our customer in upstate New York

Highly aromatic, and slightly harder than Western Red Cedar, Alaskan Yellow Cedar is an excellent choice for most building applications where a lighter hued wood is desired. Naturally resistant to rot and decay with good dimensional stability and work-ability, Alaskan Yellow Cedar is readily available in decking, custom and standard siding patterns, shingles, shakes and dimensional lumber.

Custom Milled Yellow Cedar T&G

In this photo – Custom Milled Alaskan Yellow Cedar T&G for a customer in New York

We are pleased to share this photo collection with you where our Alaskan Yellow Cedar dimensional boards were used to make a stunning fence in the Seattle area. This beautiful fence will provide years of service, and beauty, to this customer’s property.

These awesome photos were shared with us, along with this quote
“We are so excited about the cedar. It is BEAUTIFUL” ~ Erika

Alaskan Yellow Cedar Boards Used for Fencing

Yellow Cedar Fencing

ayc-fence

Before your next project, be sure to visit us!  We ship nationwide!

http://www.CedarCountryLumber.com

950 B Fountain Street ~ Burlington, WA

Toll Free 866.757.6343

Rain Screen Siding Installation Q&A

What is Rain Screening?

In the quest to finding better moisture management and energy efficiency, more architects and builders are installing exterior siding using rain screen installation methods. Basically, rain screening is a system, not an actual “thing”, that is used to create an air gap between the exterior siding (cladding) and a water resistant barrier that is installed over the sheathing of the structure.

By creating an air cavity between the moisture barrier and the exterior siding, this double wall construction uses the outer layer (the exterior siding) to keep the rain out, while the inner layer (an air/moisture barrier) provides thermal insulation and prevents excessive air leakage. It also allows any moisture that may pass thorough the siding to easily drain away, as well as accelerates evaporation of any residual moisture within the walls.  In the event that any water does collect behind the exterior cladding, the air gap allows it to dry, which prevents moisture build up and rot.

Rain screening is created by attaching vertical furring strips that are generally 1/4 – 3/8″ thick, by 2 – 3.5″ wide, using plywood or other treated wood strips, plastic mats or other rain screen system creating materials, over a water resistant barrier, such as tar paper.  Flashing is then installed over any penetrations and all vulnerable areas where water may pool or collect to allow it to evaporate and/or drain away.  Finally, the exterior siding is installed by adhering it to the furring strips, thus creating the air gap behind for air flow.

Be sure to contact your local building department for specific codes on rain screen installation in your area and follow all manufacturer’s recommendations to ensure the success of your project.

In these photos, 1×6 Alaskan Yellow Cedar dimensional boards were used as exterior siding over rain screening.  Simply beautiful, durable and eco-friendly.  Alaksan Yellow Cedar, also referred to as Nootka Cypress, has almost always been identified by the species label nootkatensis (so named for the Nuu-chah-nulth people of Canada).  However, the genus of the tree has been changed many times with the most recent being in the Cuypressus genus.
Alaskan Yellow Cedar Rain screen Siding

 

 

Alaskan Yellow Cedar used as siding over rain screen

photos and craftsmanship by Kreider Construction of Anacortes, WA 

Although rain screening installation costs more than more traditional U.S. exterior siding methods, it can prevent costlier problems, such as rot and decay, later on.  It also can add green benefits to your project due to the thermal insulation properties, as well as adding to the longevity of the structure and the building materials used, thus reducing waste.

www.CedarCountryLumber.com

Toll Free 866.757.6343    Fax  360.757.6343

We Ship Nationwide!