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Maple Flooring Manufactures Associaction (MFMA) versus Canadian Lumberman's Association (CLA)

Purpose of Grading Comparisons
This comparison is not written to recommend one product over the other but to clarify that manufacturers of both associations manufacture quality products that may be used confidently for there intended purposes. This guideline is meant as a minimum guideline for mills to meet or exceed. As may be the case a particular mill may meet or exceed the grading rules for the CLA or MFMA association standards in all areas including colour, average length and serviceability.

The highest standard grade. This maple is an extremely durable and desirable flooring for any building; particularly suitable for fine homes, apartments, churches, clubs, dance floors, gymnasiums, handball and racquetball courts, school classrooms, hospitals, hotels, offices, roller skating rinks and other applications where fine appearance and long wear are desired. With the use of some finishes slight shadows and color variations may appear.


  1. Will admit variations in the natural color of the wood.
  2. Firm pin knot holes 1/8" in diameter.
  3. Occasional dark green or black spots or streaks not over 1/4" wide or 3" long.
  4. Birds eyes and small burls, a slightly tom grain; or similar defect which can be readily removed of smoothing the floor when it is laid.
  5. 10% allowed to be less than 18", 35% allowed to be less than 30", 55% allowed less than 42". Minimum length is 9"
  1. Varying natural color of sapwood allowed.
  2. Pinholes 1/16" may occur per 24" section.
  3. Character marks limited to 1/8"x1" or equivelant per 24" section.
  4. No checks, shake, rot, or stain permitted.
  5. Minimum length is 12" with a maximum of 4 pieces less than 18" allowed in each bundle. Minimum avaerage length shall be 3'.

This grade of maple will provide the same long life and low maintenance performance as First Grade maple.

Second and Better maple is an ideal choice for gymnasiums, handball and racquetball courts, multipurpose rooms, cafeteria's and shops in schools, industrial plants, offices, commercial buildings and residences.


  1. admits tight, sound knots provided they do not occur on edges or ends of strips.
  2. distinct color variation; numerous dark green or black spots or streaks provided they do not occur in combination with predominately dark heartwood.
  3. Slight checks not exceeding 3" in length and running parallel with and well within the edges and ends of the strip.
  4. Dark spots or streaks with slight checks in center.
  5. 15% allowed less than 18", 42% allowed less than 30", 60% allowed less than 42', Minimum length is 9".
  1. Each piece may contain 50% heartwood.
  2. Character marks limited to 1/4"x3" permitted twice per 24" section.
  3. Hairline checks less than 3" allowed to a maximum of 2 per 24" section.
  4. Shake not permitted.
  5. Maximum of 8 pieces less than 18" allowed in each bundle. Minimum average length shall be 3'

This grade of maples is an ideal for gymnasiums, multipurpose rooms, cafeteria and shops in schools, industrial plants offices , commercial buildings and residences, Third grade maple gives excellent performance in recreation rooms, factories, warehouses, grain storage and other farm buildings, and room of antique decoration whre a unique floor is desired. Third grade maples is suitable for kindred uses where good wearing qualities are required together with medium costs and appearences. These grades may contain all defects common to maple, but the wood must be a firm and serviceable. It will not admit voids on edges or ends, or knots.


  1. Will not admit voids on edges or ends.
  2. No knot holes over 3/8" in diameter or unsound knots where the unsound portion is over 1" in diameter.
  3. No shakes, heart checks, badly split ends and imperfections in manufacture which materially will impair the serviceability of the flooring for the purpose intended.
  4. 40% allowed less than 18", 75% allowed less than 30", 85% allowed less than 42", Minimum length is 9".
  1. May contain any combination of sapwood and heartwood with all color variations allowed.
  2. Allows holes to 1/8" and sound knots to1", three per 24" section.
  3. Hairline checks allowed, shake not permitted.
  4. Minimum length is 12" with all developing pieces less than 18" allowed. Minimum average length shall be 2.25'.

Maple Flooring Manufacturers Association
60 Revere Drive, Suite 500
Northbrook, Illinois 60062 USA
Canadian Lumberman's Association
27 GoulBourn Ave
Ottawa, Ontario K1N 8C7 Canada