I making a work bench surface and after putting the boards together in a rectangle I noticed a twist in one of the 2x4s. The result is that it will not lay flat anymore.

Will adding joists help correct this issue? The boards will act as a support for a piece of plywood that will go on top.


Buy another 2x4 that is straight. If it is for a workbench top you should be buying the best quality you can find which might cost $2 more.

  • Sometimes they will even just let you exchange one 2x4 (or other lumber) for another, assuming you haven't cut it down yet. – BrownRedHawk Jun 24 '16 at 17:38
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    @BrownRedHawk - most BB will let you if it is within a week. Actually most BB will let you return anything depending who is working the counter. – DMoore Jun 24 '16 at 17:42
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    @Tester101 - When wood wants to twist it is much stronger than you think. Bind it to more wood and watch it try to twist that wood too. – DMoore Jun 24 '16 at 17:43
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    @DMoore I find a pleasant demeanor and a smile are about all the reciept I need to make an exchange. As for correcting the twist in lumber, I find it's something only to be attempted with expensive and/or non-replaceable lumber. – BrownRedHawk Jun 24 '16 at 18:17
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    @BrownRedHawk - Exactly. Just hearing "2x4" is enough to know it isn't worth the time. – DMoore Jun 24 '16 at 18:29

It's not uncommon for a softwood frame built independently of any support structure to have a twist. It's usually resolved when you add your top sheet and anchor the assembly to walls, legs, etc. Gravity helps over time as well. I wouldn't bother taking anything apart unless it's convenient.

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