Home & Garden

Lumber, Plywood, MDF

  • Last Updated:
  • Aug 8th, 2010 8:52 pm
Jr. Member
Apr 27, 2009
183 posts

Lumber, Plywood, MDF

I was wondering where the best place is to buy lumber in Toronto. I'm not convinced that Home Depot and Rona are the best places to go, there are probably better places out there. I thought I'd ask if anyone here has any recommendations.

I intend to build some custom-sized shelves. If I were to use knotty pine, which is the cheapest actual wood at Rona, it would cost me $700, for the wood alone, to make them. That's even if they carry all the board widths I want.

I also looked at plywood and MDF. MDF is the cheapest. But more research told me that MDF is highly toxic to work with and will off-gas inside your home forever. There is also the problem of fastening the pieces together as normal wood screws aren't MDF-friendly. You might have to get complicated and use IKEA-type fasteners.

I already have some MDF shelves and they sag. I'm looking for something that won't do that.

So plywood might be the answer. My calculations show I could do what I want for around $300 with 5-ply 3/4" spruce plywood.

So where's the best place to get plywood? Home Depot sells that type of plywood for $27.97 in a 4'x8' sheet which = $.87/ft2.

Or maybe there's a lumber yard that has better prices on actual wood, such as pine, than the big box stores.

Rona sells 8' boards of knotty pine for:
12" = $2.62/ft
10" = $1.76/ft
Looking for 14", but they don't seem to have it.

If you have had any experiences having lumber or plywood or MDF cut to measure at the store where you bought it, good or bad, could you also elaborate.
2 replies
Deal Addict
User avatar
Jul 19, 2006
2208 posts
Depending where you are in the GTA...I usually go to HD for most of my lumber needs...just because they open late & on weekends...

If you have time during the week...try your local lumber yard...places like Fairbank Lumber (Dufferin & Steeles) has good variety...but they are certainly not cheap...their sell high quality wood and of course their prices will reflect that...

Home depot will cut lumber for you...first 2 cuts are free.....some might give you more cuts...but it's definitely a YMMV...also, their cuts are far from accurate...but it might be good enough for most people...

Fairbank on the other hand...their cut are accurate...but they do charge $1/cut...
Deal Addict
User avatar
Oct 26, 2008
2474 posts
The lumber I used for my latest project, a workshop bench and shelfing unit, were all purchased at Lowes. I find their prices slightly lower than Rona and HD. They also have a coupon for $20 off for a $150 purchase before taxes which expires this Wednesday. Central Fairbanks is a tad expensive but you get what you pay for. I purchased 3 maple cold air returns from them which cost me over $300 just to give you an idea of what they can charge.