February 28, 2024 3 min read

Live edge slabs, with their natural and rustic beauty, have become increasingly popular in interior design and woodworking. Whether you're a DIY enthusiast or a professional woodworker, understanding how to properly store and transport live edge slabs is essential to ensure they maintain their quality. In this guide, we'll explore the various aspects of storing and transporting live edge slabs, from the initial storage methods to safe transportation practices.

Storing Live Edge Slabs

Outdoor Storage

When live edge slabs are freshly cut and still green, it's common to store them outside. However, this isn't a simple process of leaving them exposed to the elements. These slabs must be protected from the sun to prevent damage from ultraviolet light. Placing them undercover is crucial during the air drying process to prevent checking or warping.

Indoor Storage After Kiln Drying

After the slabs have undergone the kiln drying process, they should be stored indoors to prevent reabsorbing moisture. This indoor storage ensures that, regardless of the weather, the slabs remain in top condition and are ready for various woodworking projects.

Air Drying Process

The duration of the air drying process varies depending on the wood's hardness. Softer woods like soft maple and poplar can be placed directly into a vacuum kiln without significant defects. In contrast, harder woods like Walnut require longer air drying periods. For instance, 3-inch thick Walnut slabs may need up to a year of air drying before they are ready for use.

Transporting Live Edge Slabs

On Trailers

Transporting live edge slabs is not as delicate as it might seem. Slabs can be loaded onto trailers, trucks, or vans for short-distance transportation. While they can withstand some exposure to weather, it's essential to prevent them from soaking in water. For long-distance trips, especially in rainy conditions, additional precautions may be necessary to protect the slabs.

Shipping Live Edge Slabs

When shipping live edge slabs, it's crucial to ensure they arrive at their destination unharmed. Slabs can be shipped on crates, and they can be sent across the country without significant issues. However, when it comes to finished tables crafted from these slabs, special considerations are needed.

Shipping Finished Tables

For finished tables, the preferred method is White Glove shipping. This entails a professional team arriving at the source location, picking up the table, and delivering it directly to the customer. White Glove shipping minimizes the risks associated with traditional freight shipping.

If you must opt for freight shipping, make sure to take extra precautions. Clearly mark the package as fragile and instruct against stacking. There have been instances where tables shipped as freight were left outside and exposed to frost, resulting in damage and the need for rework.


Understanding how to store and transport live edge slabs is crucial to maintain their quality and integrity. Whether you're working with green slabs in the initial drying phase or finished tables ready for delivery, following best practices ensures your live edge creations reach their destination in perfect condition.

If you have any further questions or need assistance with live edge slabs, don't hesitate to contact KC Custom Hardwoods today for expert advice and guidance. Your woodworking projects will benefit from the care and attention you give to these beautiful, natural pieces.