What is oven dried pine

How do I get 2x6 and more pine in California, or a nearby alternative?

If you want it affordable you have to dig around. In northern Washington, Doug Fir is most of the dimensional material, but as you dig through the piles other species emerge. Spruce, in particular, fits your bill, is very light, and has less pitch than Doug Fir. The boards in each batch are given a code that usually includes the drying method (KD for oven dried) and the types (Doug F, SYP, Hem, etc.).

So if you're really interested in using custom made lumber, start browsing the stacks. Spruce, pine, hemlock, and southern yellow pine should work fine for you if you can find them.

The difference between Douglas fir and things like Southern Yellow Pine in practice is quite small. Even if the wood feels wetter or drier, everything will move. Any dimensional wood has a good chance of showing control, ripples, and splits. Pick your parts carefully in the store and either quickly assemble them with some heavy duty fasteners or let the boards acclimate and re-rout them first.

More information on timber codes for sawn timber: http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/article/0,,1639800,00.html

ScottK

The movement of the wood is my main concern. I am currently using the wood as a floorboard table top with pocket hole screws.

ench

If you are adding adhesive panels or otherwise joining the boards together to form a top (instead of attaching them individually to the frame), let them acclimate first. 2x6 and wider tend to cup miserably over time, researching the choices on board, and avoiding anything that is flat.