Gazebo: Footings & Wood

I am contemplating building an 8' gazebo and was wondering:
1)Are footings really necessary? Wouldn't some PT 4x4s semiburied and hammered in w/ rebar suffice? I am in SE Penna.
2)I would like to use cedar but the offerings at HD and Lowes are minimal. I am limited to these two due to a large amount of free gift cards which are financing the project. Would PT pine be ok to use or is the wood too variable to construct something like this? I made a playset recently with the warped and uneven PT wood that turned out ok. I then coated it w/ clear Thompson's and it actually has a very nice pine look to it. Will yearly coatings help preserve this look of PT lumber or is it doomed to dingy gray?
Thanks. _________________________________________________________________ JG... Jeff Givens mailto: snipped-for-privacy@xemapsXX.comXX
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A freestanding gazebo would be OK without footings. Not really sure what you mean by semiburied 4x4's. Whether you use PT pine or cedar is a matter of personal taste. Surely you could order cedar at HD or Lowes. The problem with PT is that it usually arrives sopping wet, and after you put it up, it will shrink substantially. But you could either live with the shrinkage or sticker it out and dry it before applying it. Good luck.
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Just some partially buried lengthwise, leveled and staked - forms a base to screw stuff down onto.

I hadn't thought of that - I will ask.
Thanks. _________________________________________________________________ JG... Jeff Givens mailto: snipped-for-privacy@xemapsXX.comXX
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The footings sound more like a personal issue. It would depend somewhat on how large this thing is and whether or not you're planning on running it through code enforcement. It will be to your strong advantage to get the thing leveled up for construction purposes which can be done by several methods. Many portable storage buildings are sleepered on some 4 x ?? skids. You may have some strong interest in some form of tie downs so a strong wind storm doesn't give your gazebo to a neighbor. This can be handled by piers, footings, or even trailer tie down augers.
I'm glad you like the look of Thompson's on wood and I sure hope it does something for you. My experience is that the wood is going to turn gray whether it is pressure treated yellow pine, white oak, heart grade red wood, or any of the cedars. 2 years, 2 winters, rain, and lawn sprinklers will establish their own shades of gray. The one finish I feel that works or would recommend would by Olympia semi transparent stain or equal. It will still require reapplication, but it will give you a color of your choice and still let some of the character of the wood show through..
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Code is not an issue in my township - just is it necessary for the stability of the gazebo.

I was leaning towards this and anchoring the structure to these.

I hope it lasts - I plan to reapply every year, or more often if needed. I can easily switch if this is shown to be a poorer choice of 'color' preservative. _________________________________________________________________ JG... Jeff Givens mailto: snipped-for-privacy@xemapsXX.comXX
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