• R. Arbelaez Oregon State University
  • L. Schimleck Oregon State University
  • J. Dahlen University of Georgia
  • S. Wood City of Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability


cross laminated timber (CLT), deconstruction, density, Douglas fir, salvaged lumber, stiffness


Portland, Oregon was the first U.S. city to implement a deconstruction ordinance in 2016. Although salvaged lumber from deconstructed dwellings can have high demand, the market for small-sized lumber is near saturation. New applications for this material are required for market development, industry diversification and the possible expansion of the deconstruction ordinance. Its use in mass timber is an option, but presently no wood property information exists for lumber from deconstructed dwellings inhibiting its use for structural purposes. Density and dynamic MOE (E) of 265, 38 mm x 89 mm (2 x 4) pieces of salvaged Douglas fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) lumber were determined using a Metriguard Model 340 E-Computer. Additional data collected included sample dimensions, weight, and visual appearance. Over 50% of samples had a calculated stiffness comparable to the highest structural design grade for Coastal Douglas fir lumber. The presence of knots and damage, present in 66% and 59% of boards respectively, would likely downgrade boards, despite acceptable stiffness. Results show that 96% of samples were sufficiently stiff to meet minimum requirements for the manufacture of E3 grade cross laminated timber (CLT) panels and considering defects, this material is suitable for manufacturing CLT. Provision of wood property information for salvaged lumber is critical for market expansion and this work represents the first characterization of lumber from deconstructed Portland, OR dwellings.


AF&PA (2017) U.S. paper recovery rate reaches record 67.2 percent in 2016. American Forest & Paper Association, Washington, DC. https://www.afandpa.org/media/news/2017/05/09/u.s.-paper-recovery-rate-reaches-record-67.2-percent-in-2016 (1 February 2019).

Anderson S (2018) Portland’s deconstruction program 12-month status report. Bureau of Planning and Sustainability, Portland, OR.

ANSI/APA (2018) Standards for performance-rated cross laminated timber. ANSI/APA-PRG320. American National Standards Institute, Tacoma, WA.

ASTM (2007) Standard practice for establishing allowable properties for visually-graded dimension lumber from in-grade tests of full-size specimens. D1990-07. ASTM, West Conshohocken, PA.

AWC (2015) National design specification (NDS) supplement: Design values for wood construction 2015 edition. American Wood Council, Leesburg, VA.

Belluschi P, JohnsonN,HeikkenenH(1965) Douglas-fir defects caused by the Douglas-fir beetle. J For 63:252-256.

Bowyer J (2016) The irresponsible pursuit of paradise. Levins Publishing, Minneapolis, MN.

Diyamandoglu V, Fortuna L (2015) Deconstruction of wood framed houses: Material recovery and environmental impact. Resour Conserv Recycling 100:21-30.

Falk R, DeVisser D, Cook S, Stansbury D (1999a) Effect of damage on the grade yield of recycled lumber. Forest Prod J 49:71-79.

Falk R, Green D, Lantz C (1999b) Evaluation of lumber recycled from an industrial military building. Forest Prod J 49:49-55.

Falk R, McKeever D (2012) Generation and recovery of solid wood waste in the US. Biocycle 53:30-32.

Hollingsworth C (2018) Pacific northwest insect management handbook. Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR.

Howe J, Bratkovich S, Bowyer J, Frank M, Fernholz K (2013) The current state of wood reuse and recycling in North America and recommendations for improvements, Wood Reuse and Recycling in North America. Dovetail Partners, Minneapolis, MN.

Kretschmann DE (2010) Chapter 5: Mechanical properties of wood. Pages 5-7 in RJ Ross ed. Wood handbook. General Technical Report FPL-GTR-190. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Forest Products Laboratory, Madison, WI.

McKeever D (2009) Estimated annual timber products consumption in major end uses in the United States, 1950-2006. FPL-GTR-181. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Forest Products Laboratory, Madison, WI. 47 pp.

Metriguard (2011) Model 340 E-Computer user manual. Part number: LIT-MAN-1340. Revision: 1.4 (17 November 2011). Appendix B: Materials size guide. Metriguard Inc., Pullman, WA. 59 pp.

Nunes A, Palmeri J, Love S (2019) Deconstruction vs. demolition: An evaluation of carbon and energy impacts from deconstructed homes in the city of Portland. City of Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability, Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, Portland, OR.

Rahman F (2019) Demolition methods and process for building structures. The Constructor–Civil Engineering Home. https://theconstructor.org/structures/demolitionmethods-process-buildings-structures/13941/ (9 September 2019).

Risse M, Vial E, Privat F, Richter K (2017) Work package 6: Ecological and economic assessment of solid waste wood recycling. CaReWood–Cascading Recovered Wood.

Rose C, Bergsagel D, Dufresne T, Unubreme E, Lyu T, Duffour P, Stegemann J (2018) Cross-laminated secondary timber: Experimental testing and modelling the effect of defects and reduced feedstock properties. Sustainability 10:4118.

Six D (2003) Bark beetle-fungus symbioses. Pages 97-114 in K Bourtzis and TA Miller, eds. Insect symbiosis. CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL.

Thomsen A, Schultmann F, Kohler N (2011) Deconstruction, demolition and destruction. Build Res Inform 39(4): 327-332.

Wood S (2015) City of Portland resolution No. 37190, Portland, OR. https://www.portlandoregon.gov/bps/article/569831 (17 February 2016).

Wood S (2016) City of Portland ordinance No. 187876, Portland, OR. https://www.portlandoregon.gov/bps/article/586234 (6 July 2016).

WWPA (1991) Western lumber grading rules. Western Wood Products Association, Portland, OR.





Research Contributions