Edge Grain Vs End Grain: Which Wood Grain Is Better?

Despite the high price, many people choose appliances made of wood over metal or other materials because they are durable and bring a formal and luxury look to the house. To choose the highest-quality objects, they often get themselves acquainted with some knowledge about wood types. 

However, only a few people know the differences between edge grain vs end grain, a critical factor in choosing wood appliances. This article will show you why it is essential to deeply understand this aspect. 

An Overview Of Edge Grain And End Grain

Edge grain and end grain are not types of wood. Some say that they are surfaces of a wood board, while others consider them as woodcut styles. Both ways of understanding are proper, so what is edge grain, and what is end grain?

Edge grain

When we cut a log in its long side, we can see the grain in the cutting surface running from one side to the other; it is edge grain. Using the edge-grain side as the main surface of a wood appliance is called edge-grain style. 


End grain

On the other hand, the grain we see when cut across a log is end grain. End grain is often curves or closed circles. Therefore, it is easily recognized on a wood appliance surface (except industrial wood) and distinguished from edge grain.

Edge Grain Vs End Grain Comparison

To clarify the comparing factors between edge grain and end grain, we will put them in their material units: edge board and end block.


An edge board is often processed to be slim. Its surface is impressive and good-looking, with the grain running across the long side and distributed relatively evenly. Manufacturers often combine various boards to make a large one so that a big edge board can be made of different wood types.

Below is a video published by WoodworkersJournal, showing how to make a large edge board by combining small panels.

On the other hand, an end block is much thicker because a thin one is easy to break. A thick end block is extraordinarily consistent and challenging to any pressure. We can also make bigger blocks by combining small ones, but they may not be good-looking like edge boards. Moreover, the production cost for a large end block is much higher than an edge board.



Edge boards and end blocks are used mainly in manufacturing household furniture. 

Edge-boards are easier to make and combine, so they are often used to produce furniture with large surfaces such as tables, doors, or floors. Appliances made of edge boards are usually slim, and their weights may depend on the wood types. 

On the other hand, end-grain boards are harder to combine, so manufacturers often produce appliances with smaller surfaces. Items made of end blocks are thicker and heavier. Sometimes, we may see some minor or thinner components with end grain on the surfaces, such as parts of a table foot. 

If you have an end-grain piece of furniture in the house or usually work with end blocks, these tips may be helpful. 

Edge Grain Vs End Grain: Which Is Better?

It is hard to say which is better if they are cut from the same log or tree. However, we can compare edge grain and end grain objects base on their thickness.

For a thin piece, edge grain is the better material. On the other hand, you should pick the end-grain appliance. 


1. Which material is better for a chopping board: edge grain or end grain?

If you want a wooden chopping board, better buy an end-grain one. 

First, it is sturdier than an edge board. Next, when you cut food on the surface, the knife rarely leaves any marks, so the quality is maintained for a long time. In addition, an end-grain board is anti-sliding, which means your knife will never slide away when cutting. 

On the other hand, you may see many knife marks on an edge board after a prolonged use time. Also, this kind of chopping board doesn’t hold the blade tight like an end-grain one.

If you want to find the best end grain chopping board in the market, click here.

2. Why are end-grain objects expensive?

Unlike an edge board, an end block has a smaller surface and more challenging to flatten. Therefore, to make an end-grain object, workers have to combine small blocks from many different blocks. 

Next, they also have to choose from numerous small blocks to make a combined one with a good appearance. Moreover, end-grain furniture needs more chemicals, such as oil, glue, varnish, and more time to complete. 

As a result, an end-grain object is much more expensive than an edge-grain one.

3. How can we identify an edge-grain or end-grain chopping board?

Although an edge-grain cutting board may consist of more than one wood piece, its surface patterns seem to run across from one side to another. 

On the other hand, an end-grain one combines numerous pieces with different patterns and a square surface. We may see this combination on the surface and recognize the end-grain board.



We hope you will find it easy to recognize edge grain vs end grain after reading this article and have your idea on choosing wooden furniture. Also, remember to share with your friends if you think our information is helpful.