It’s that Firelog time of the year

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It has been a great summer right on the heels of one of the best spring stretches of weather in recent memory. We should get another few weeks of this treat but winter IS on its way. Time to start thinking about rain, clouds, sleet and snow. Cold winter high pressure systems, weeks of blue skies and freezing temperatures. It’s that firelog time of the year. Mill Out Lumber is the place to get yours. Full Tons of 696 bricks are $260.00 each and convenient  boxes of 8 are $5.50 a piece including a couple of wax soaked fire lighters.

Tacoma firelogs contain no waxes or binders and are held together entirely by high pressure. At 3 pounds each they are just under 52 # per cubic foot which is denser than Madrone or  Red Oak. They are made in Tacoma so you will not be helping to pay for trucking from far away places like Idaho, Spokane or Montana.

The Tacoma Firelogs are a combination of Hemlock, Douglas fir, Sitka Spruce, Alder and Cedar with the heaviest proportion to the first 2 types of wood, pound for pound they will be comparable to any pressed sawdust log with the exception that some logs have wax or binding agents to hold them together which may add to the BTU’s available but also to contamination in the flue and burning device. I don’t think there is much difference between softwoods and hardwoods when you look at them pound for pound, hardwoods do burn hotter and longer but that is more a function of their density than any other characteristics.

Some comparisons of wood weight per cubic foot, seasoned.

Alder                     26#

Doug Fir               33#

Cedar                    23#

Madrone             45#

Maple                   39#

Red Oak               45#

Apple                    41#

The softwoods average about 28.25#, while the hardwoods are more like 42.5# so it makes sense that you will get 50% more energy out of hardwood raw log, but when you compress softwoods to densities exceeding that of hardwood it also makes sense that you will get more heat per cubic inch from a compressed log.

Once they are ground to fine dust and compressed to the same density all wood contains approximately 8600 btu heating units per pound and actually it is the pitchy softwoods like pine and Douglas fir that push the top end of the scale up to 9100 btus per # because of the higher energy density in their pitch

So with all that said sawdust is pretty much sawdust and the more Important detail is what does it cost per pound and how convenient is it to store and use. Tacoma Firelogs are the answer!

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Best Value in Cedar Fence Boards

1×5-6′ #2 & better Western Red Cedar Fence Boards


First some background on the fence boards we carry. We sell and stock 95% or more of our cedar fencing from Reichert shake and fence in Toledo Washington. They are regarded as the finest dedicated cedar fence mill in the Northwest due to the quality and consistency of the boards they cut. Color is uniform as well as sizing and grading, a #1 board purchased today will be just like one from a year ago or a year from now, and that is the case for all of the other sizes and grades we carry in stock.

Most if not all of the boards we carry are full width which is a little different to some people. So our 6″ boards measure 6″s, 5″ measure 5″‘s and so on for 4″ and 3″ widths. All of the Riechert boards are consistently 5/8″ thick unlike other fencing that says it is 5/8″ but measure as little as 1/2″.

1×5-6′, #2 and Better Western Red Cedar, 


Douglas Fir Flooring

Douglas Fir Flooring is not the first thing most people associate with Mill Outlet Lumber. Because of our commitment to bring in high quality vertical grain “E grade Douglas Fir” Lumber we have a deep well of material to run patterns from. We could have moldings and other sorts of profiles made but to date we are keeping it simple with flooring and maybe some paneling.



Most people are looking for 1×4 Fir Flooring so that is what we keep on hand at most times, but since we have a ready supply of every size from 1×4 to 1×12 we also can have a variety of wide plank flooring made custom for you. Plan on 2 weeks lead time to be sure but some orders have gone from start to finish in a matter of days. Keep in mind that this product is priced reasonably and the way we can do that is there is absolutely no prior grading, you get the good and some bad. When the bad is cut out you still save substantially. Just this week we processed an order for 1800 lineal feet of 1×8 at less than $1.40 per square foot and when it is said and done I don’t think there will be more than 5% waste. Most people who look at this material and its defect state that they actually want to leave the occasional knots in for a little visual interest.


Personally I can not think of a better material for interior trim, paneling or flooring than Douglas fir, It is durable, uniform in appearance and the perfect combination of contemporary elegance and rustic character. It goes well with Cedar and Fir rustic timbers as well as metallic surfaces and modern glass and tile. Don’t pay a fortune for Douglas Fir if you don’t have to. Check first with Mill Outlet Lumber.

Brrrrrrr,rr,rr,rr Its Cold

Cold Morning

Its cold down here

It started on Monday, cold, but lots of sun and no wind, a good day for hanging Christmas lights and yard work. Then came Tuesday, colder and steady wind all day long, the wind chill here had to be less than 10 degrees. The wind let up on Wednesday but the air and ground were colder yet, sealing the surface of our Alaska asphalt. Then each successive day it has grown colder yet.

Alaska Asphalt

Alaska Asphalt

Now it is Saturday morning, another bright sunny day and perfect conditions to come to Mill Outlet Lumber and stock up on clean burning Tacoma Firelogs at $5.50 for a 24# box of 8 or $225.00 for a 2000# pallet of 696.

Tacoma Fire Logs

Tacoma Fire Logs

It has been cold all week and will continue a few more days, but it has also been sunny and great weather for building fences. That fact has been proven by the “Brisk” business we have done all week selling fence boards and supplies.Maybe this is why?

The cold has not been the worst part, it is actually the wind, 24 mile per hour wind, which we have seen this week, can make 30 degrees feel like zero. So a well built and designed fence can actually raise the apparent temperature by as much as 30 degrees. Wouldn’t 60 degrees feel good right now? It doesn’t actually work that way, but it sure feels better to get out of the wind.

A well designed fence deserves a well designed gate and while there are too many styles to list, this is by far my favorite.

What to do?

What to do?

So come and buy some Tacoma Firelogs and burn them for heat, or build a fence to block the arctic Blast, or spend 20 minutes posting on the internet, In any case it is another great day to come to Mill Outlet Lumber. 4811 S Tyler st, Tacoma, 253 514 0658


Split Rail Fence

For Split Rail, for you, your neighbors and families

Mill Outlet Lumber

When Railsplitter Abraham Lincoln set out to build or mend some fence he had to start by beating his way through a pile of Chestnut logs or two. Nowadays we have it easy some say, kids not willing to work hard for anything, everything available at the filck of a switch.

I am happy to say that we don’t have to split rail today, having done it myself a time or two, it is so much easier and convenient to make a trip to Mill Outlet for your Split Rail Supplies. Not only are your rails and posts split and ready to go, but they are mortised and tenoned so that they fit right together without giant spikes or precipitous balancing acts.

At Mill Outlet, we stock 1000’s of feet of rail and 100’s of posts in two sizes and varieties. Pony Rail, is smaller and more affordable,, But it also has more…

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