Local Sources of Reused Wood

Compiled by Gary Munkhoff

As the demand for wood and products made from wood increases, the world’s forests will, at some point, no longer be able to sustainably grow all the fiber consumed. Reducing our demand for wood, reusing wood products that already exist, and recycling the disposable wood products such as paper and cardboard are all steps that must become the norm. In the Portland area there are numerous businesses that offer wood products that have been in use at one time and are now available for reuse, often in a totally different way.

Columbia Riverwood

This company’s wood is derived from classic “boomsticks” that made up the perimeter of log transportation rafts from over 50 years ago. These select old growth Douglas fir trees were hand-picked for their straight and branchless trunks, that when chained together would form one of the original water transportation technologies for logs—technology that has since been replaced by more efficient methods. As time progressed, the old log rafts became obsolete and the boomsticks were slowly forgotten about, often stored along the riverside. After decades in the Columbia River, each boomstick is lifted out of the water, loaded onto a log truck and transported to a FSC-certified sawmill in Mehama, Oregon.All of their lumber products are accurately documented and tracked from their location in the river to final lumber production in order to provide their clients an FSC-certified, green product.

Salvaged Wood

photo flickr user Joe Pemberton

Salvage Works

Owned and operated by Preston Browning, Salvage Works is in the old Lovett Deconstructiion location at 2030 N Willis St. They carry a choice selection of architectural salvage and vintage house parts reclaimed from local deconstruction and salvage projects, as well as an interesting array of vintage curiosities for the home. So if you are looking for lumber, doors, windows, flooring, molding, lighting, hand-made furniture or collectibles check with then before buying new.

Urban Hardwood Recovery

Tyler Evans mills, kiln dries and sells hardwood lumber from urban trees in the Portland area that have fallen or must be removed for some other reason. Normally these trees would end up as firewood or landfill debris. He is constantly on the look out for trees that need to be turned into lumber rather than end up some other place. I am not looking to see any healthy trees removed for the sole purpose of creating lumber. I do “reclaimed”, “rescued”, “green”, and “salvaged” wood only. My pricing is designed to put Oregon wood back into the hands of Oregon woodworkers, while covering costs, and enabling the business to grow and broaden its impact. It’s not free, but it is designed to be the lower cost for comparable quality. My only minimum is at least one whole board. No partial boards, but other than that there is no minimum to buy.

Viridian Wood Products

Most reclaimed lumber companies find their inspiration in old barns and schoolhouses. Viridian’s story was born in 2004 down at the shipyard, with a lot of grit and a couple of friends’ idea to rescue some really amazing wood from winding up in a landfill. Wood from far off ports arrives daily as shipping pallets and crates, but it’s extremely difficult to recycle. Through years of trial and error they pioneered a method for up-cycling these dock-side discards into products with lasting value. Located at 421 N Broadway.

Goby Walnut Products

Their wood comes from local Northwest trees that are either hazard or salvage. Their buildings are heated with offcuts from these trees through a very efficient wood fired boiler system. Side cuts from flooring become butcher block countertops. Walnut planer shavings are a natural weed suppressor and we are developing packaging to sell the shavings as a natural alternative to chemical weed suppressants. The Goby delivery truck runs on bio-diesel and Goby Walnut Products is in the process of “smartwood” certification. They see no reason why responsible environmental practices cannot co-exsist with successful business. Located at 5315 NW St. Helens Rd.

Rebuilding Center

The ReBuilding Center, a project of Our United Villages, is a vibrant resource working to strengthen the environmental, economic, and social fabric of local communities. Founded by volunteers in 1998, The ReBuilding Center carries the region’s largest volume of used building and remodeling materials. It provides resources that make home repairs affordable to everyone, with the goal of promoting the reuse of salvaged and reclaimed materials. Three hundred visitors come to The ReBuilding Center every day to browse the ever-changing inventory that includes sinks, tubs, tile, lumber, doors, windows, trim and much more. Located at 3625 N Mississippi Ave.

Comments

  1. A great source for reclaimed wood is Barnwood Naturals, located at 101 Union ST NE, Salem, Oregon. 503-580-3900. Over 1,000,000 board feet of very high quality lumber and timbers…all under one roof.

    • Hi Bruce, thank you for sending the link. A great resource for folks south of Portland. I see that you have partnered with Pringle Creek on projects. The Summer issue of Green Living Journal has an article about Pringle Creek Community.

Speak Your Mind

*