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I'm sure we've all felt a connection with the carpenter who built the house we're renovating. A chalked date or tool marks are the most evident signs. When I'm looking over a house, I often catch myself wondering what that carpenter had in mind when he cut a board a certain way or selected one piece of wood over another. I've noticed that carpenters on these houses often put "verticalgrain" wood on surfaces that take a beating. Vertical Grain vs. Flat-Sawn Most common lumber is "flat-sawn" from the log. On the end grain you see the characteristic curving annual rings roughly parallel to the face of the board. "Vertical-grain" wood (sometimes called "edge-grain") is "riff-cut," or "quarter-sawn," from the log. This