Face cord

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A face cord is an informal unit of volume for stacked firewood,[1] sometimes called a rick.[2]

Width and height is typically the same as a cord, but the depth can vary.[3] The front face is the same as a cord (4'x8'), hence the name. The depth is generally commonly 16" (for use in residential fireplaces) but can be anything from 12 inches to 32 inches.

This results in a volume of 32 to 85 cubic feet. Several states only allow wood to be sold by the cord or fractions of a cord, to avoid confusion among consumers.[4][5]

The wood should stacked "racked and well stowed" – meaning stacked so that the wood is parallel, and air gaps are minimized. It should not be cross-stacked (alternating directions), as this adds considerable empty space to the stack.[4]

Common volumes for a face cord[edit]

4 feet x 8 feet x 12 inches = 1/4 cord (32 cubic feet)

4 feet x 8 feet x 16 inches = 1/3 cord (42.66 cubic feet)

4 feet x 8 feet x 24 inches = 1/2 cord (64 cubic feet, 1.8 cubic meters)

4 feet x 8 feet x 32 inches = 2/3 cord (85 cubic feet)


  1. ^ Cardarelli, F. (2003). Encyclopaedia of Scientific Units, Weights and Measures. Their SI Equivalences and Origins. London: Springer. p. 52. ISBN 978-1-4471-1122-1.
  2. ^ "Unusual units". UNC. Retrieved 28 December 2016.
  3. ^ "Wood heating". Utah State University, Forestry Extension. Retrieved 28 December 2016.
  4. ^ a b "Firewood FAQ". Lumberjax. Retrieved 28 December 2016.
  5. ^ "Consumer tips firewood". Maryland Dept of Agriculture. Retrieved 28 December 2016.