The article is coming soon to the magazine, and I’m happy to say that the map is here. Months ago, I put out a call over social media for readers to submit their favorite local lumberyards, with a short review or blurb about what they like about their yard – I called it “The Great Lumberyard Census.” After hours of sorting through the entries, formatting them for the digital interactive map and playing with GIS software, the map and accompanying directory is finished.

A layout square, or combination square, comes in 6” and 12” sizes. Most woodworkers use the 6” model, simply because it’s easiest to carry around. Also, most of the stock you’ll use will be no bigger than 6” wide, so 12” is overkill. The layout square is a triangle that you can use to mark square cuts on stock. Once you measure the length of the cut, you line up the layout square with the edge of the board. The short side will give you a straight, square cut across the end grain. You can also measure off angles with the layout square. This helps when you’re trying to measure for a bevel on a table saw, or marking a cut for a miter saw. You can even use your layout square to determine an existing angle. Just be sure to buy one made of metal. The plastic ones are not only fragile, but they also can warp, making them pretty useless.
The final building step is to lay each plank in place. These will be cut to 20” long each. Attach each piece using wood glue and brad nails. Just make sure the length the nails isn’t longer than the width of the planks and plywood combined. Once you have finished that, you can paint or stain and add your hardware!  Because I was using pre-finished white barn wood from Porter Barn Wood, I painted the table before adding the planks.  Check out these planks….