A. Yes. In fact with the hot, dry summer we had in 2011, there is a lot of oak lumber that dried too quickly, creating surface checks which then went deeper as the fast drying continued. Eventually, the surface checks were deep enough to be called honeycomb (or internal checking). I have seen some honeycomb develop in cold weather too when wind speeds were high and humidities were low.

Note that as the lumber dries, the shrinkage of the core near the end of drying will actually pull the surface checks closed (unless they were subject to wetting with liquid water). As a result, the lumber will look great after drying until it is planed or cut into smaller pieces, which will expose the internal checks or honeycomb.

Honeycomb related to the ends of the lumber is usually from end checks that went deeper.

Surface checking and honeycomb risks when air drying in hot weather can be controlled by using plastic burlap-type cloth on one side of the lumber pile. One trade name is Shade-Dri. This cloth slows down the air flow and allows the humidity inside the pile to increase to more reasonable levels. End checks can be controlled by using an end coating as soon after the lumber is sawn as possible. One trade name for this coating is Anchor Seal.

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