painting a barn

I had a pole barn built last summer on my property and as soon as it warms up a little more here in western NY I 'm going to paint it. I like the looks of it's natural color and would like to coat it with some kind of clear coating. What is the best thing to use? Is clear the best thing to do, or should I paint it? I want protection from U.V. rays, and I also want it to last as long as possible between paint jobs. Does paint last longer than stain, or some kind of clear coat? My #1 concern is protection from the Sun and the weather, #2 is longevity of the finish. I'd prefer a clear finish, but if painting it will protect it better and last longer then I'll paint it. What do you think is best? Thanks
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IMO the only way to preserve the natural wood look is to buy the best quality clear coat you can find and reapply frequently. big overhangs and gutters are essential. most woods will turn black where water splashes on the wall, no matter what product you use. i know a guy who has a wood sided house that looks great...i asked him how he did it and he says he re stains it EVERY SUMMER. so as much as you like the color of natural wood, it won't last.
if you do go the clear route, don't make the mistake of going to a big box and buying something cheap. get a brand like cabot, ben moore or the like. i've also used "cascade" by sashco (used for log cabins) and like it. again, even the best of these products will need frequent reapplication.
the more pigment in a finish, the more protection you will have for the wood. i would go with a solid color stain before paint. stain isn't prone to peeling and does not require a primer.
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marson wrote:

UV rays easily penetrate clear sealers and that is what degrades the wood.
If you are really into protection and want some semblance of the original wood look, try a high quality translucent stain such as Sikkens Cetol SRD. Expensive, but it works.
http://www.nam.sikkens.com/product.cfm?product_id=4&product_category=exterior
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Check out Penofin oil. I've had great results on outdoor furniture as it has good UV protection. I don't know if it is suitable for barns. They do have a web page so you can do some searching.
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look at products designed to protect decks and fences.
Also ask yourself if the goal is preserving the wood or preserving the appearance and the wood
Jasco Copper Clear is not a stain but a preservative similar to what is put in pressure treated wood. It will preserve the wood from rot and bugs but still let it age to a natural look.
UV damage and oxidation are what causes the aged natural look. if you use an agressive preservative/sealer, you will keep the wood looking fresh (or at least what it looks like now). UV damage and oxidation will not shorten usefulness of the siding all that much but rot and bugs sure will (or a variety or moisture related things). A preservative will also help keep it from drying too much and cracking or checking in the long haul.
Anything Clear will have little to no UV protection, you need a pigment to have significant UV protection.

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On Fri, 19 May 2006 17:47:56 +0000, Snydley wrote:

If it's not redwood, cedar, or cypress, I'd say paint it. Even if it is one of those woods, you'd have to keep after it (as marson posted). Do a good quality primer coat, after spot painting any knots, etc that are likely to bleed, using a stain blocker. It's also a good idea to pretreat places most likely to rot (like the bottoms of vertical boards or where pieces of horizontal siding abut) with a wood preservative. Another consideration if you want a paint job to last is that the building have good ventilation or an interior vapor barrier.
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Up here in canada we widely use automatic transmission fluid. Laugh all you want, gives a cedar finish, lasts 3-5 years and (used to be?) cheap to boot. A draft dodger from Ark taught me that one 20 years ago.

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On Fri, 19 May 2006 17:47:56 GMT, "Snydley"

I agree with Ann. A good sealer/primer/stain blocker (KILZ comes to mind) and a quality paint applied with a brush or roller is the only way to go.
[Pole barns here are usually skinned with metal]
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Stu wrote:

It's my understanding that barns were painted red because that color was found to be highly absorband of heat from the sun, which helped keep the occupants of the barn warm during the winter. You could do this and save a little $$$ on heating bills maybe.
JP
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Jay Pique wrote:

LOL
Someone did a study as to why so many farmers painted their barns red. They went and asked the farmers and it turned out that red was the cheapest color to buy and, given the amount of paint needed to cover a barn, the savings were considerable. And farmers being the frugal bunch that they were...............
So then the question arose, why was red the cheapest color of paint? So off they went to question the paint manufacturers as to why it was cheaper to produce red paint over the other colors.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Turns out, according the the paint manufacturers that, because there is such a demand for red paint, they can make it in greater amounts thus lowering, significantly, their production costs and ultimately the price of red paint.
At least that's how I heard the story.
VBG
Doug
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Doug Chadduck wrote:

http://people.howstuffworks.com/question635.htm
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On Fri, 19 May 2006 23:52:58 +0000, Travis Jordan wrote:

Oops, hadn't read this before I posted the same url.
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On Fri, 19 May 2006 16:33:03 -0700, Doug Chadduck wrote:

This gives several possible explanations: http://people.howstuffworks.com/question635.htm

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wrote:

If that was the case, you'd paint it black.
My counter-understanding is that red barn paint is traditional because that's the color you get by mixing local iron-oxide clay with linseed oil, and it gives you a more opaque color than whatever else was available.
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That's the most expensive pigment...
-Mike
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Snydley wrote:

Barns are supposed to be painted red. It's in the Bible.
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HeyBub wrote:

You're fighting an uphill battle with any kind of clear finish. Instead, I'd spray the barn with a pigmented stain, such as Behr for decks. If you like the cedar look, there are pigmented cedar stains that would be great.
Mark
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looks
Sun
A couple of things. To the person that said most pole barns, (in Canada I think he said), side their pole barns in metal, I had that option but decided I liked the looks of the wood siding better. I think from all of the replies I got I'm going to stain it with some king of a pigmented stain, probably red.
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