Thursday, June 21, 2018

Those Pink Stids

Several of you have commented on the pink studs that we use here in Louisiana as framing lumber.    I've seen these things as long as I can remember and took them as a natural part of carpentry.  But, y'all expressed surprise, so I thought I'd do a little research.

These studs are not pink at all. Don't trust your eyes, they're purple, or magenta, as the specs from Lowe's tell us.  However, thy're so common in the South, and surprise people from other locations, so I tried to dig into it a little bit and see what I could find.

As it turns out, it's a marketing ploy, from a lumber mill in the post WWII housing boom, to differentiate their product of good, southern pine, from the erstwhile Douglas Fir studs that were competing in the market.  If you want good, Southern Pine, buy the purple studs.  From this source.
During the post-World War II housing boom, a company called Temple-Inland introduced the now infamous purple 2×4 studs as a marketing tactic to compete against Douglas fir studs from the Pacific Northwest. It seems a sawmill owner in Southeast Texas had been painting his product orange and had no trouble selling all he could produce. Temple-Inland’s Sales Manager at the time, Bob Westin, presented stud samples in five different colors of water-repellant paint to the other members of the sales team. They unanimously selected the magenta (or purple as it is now referred to) and the rest is history.
I don't know which mill made the studs I use.  I went out to look and couldn't find any marking at all on them, but it seems that the pink studs (sorry, purple studs) are a post WWII marketing ploy that endures to this day.  Down here in the South, we us pink (sorry, purple) studs and don't give it a second thought.  They're made of good, strong Southern yellow pine, and that's the way it's been for as long as I can remember.

UPDATE:  Anonymous asked in comments;
Am curious why the sink is that far from restroom plumbing - is it an issue with sewer line routing ? Not complaining mind you (its your place !), just curious.
The simplest answer is that is where she wants the sink.  My plumber says that it is not a problem and we've got a simple solution  for the drain.  If my gal wants the sink centered o the back wall, that's exactly what I'm going to give her.


Anonymous said...

Anon from previous thread - go with the Woman's Opinion - wise man ! That totally makes sense. Thank you for answering my nosy question.

Kamas Kirian said...

Magenta - half way between blue and red. Sometimes described as reddish purple or purplish red.

According to

Magenta has a hue range of 281 to 320
Magenta-pink has a hue range of 321 to 330
Pink has a hue range of 331 to 345

And Blue-magenta (what most people would call purple) has a hue range of 241 to 280.

Those look bright pink to me, but I guess they could be magenta

Anonymous said...

They still seem odd; must be a Louisiana thing. I started in construction (here in TN) in the early '80s, & all the studs I ever bought, pre-cut or full 8' length, were natural color.
Maybe it's to keep the Cajuns away, or something?
Either way, looking good & coming along well!
--Tennessee Budd