outdoor wood question

Ohhh noooo! not another outdoor wood question!
I'll ask anyway 8^)
For general outdoor furniture (tables, chairs, gates, etc) which would be best suited for the southwestern environment (lots of hot dry sun, little water)
Redwood, Cyprus, Ipe.
I want something that needs ZERO stains/sealers/waxes/paint/fuss/muss. This is the key, any finish applied to outdoor wood here goes bad after one year. Maintenance sucks, I just want some wood that can be used to build stuff that will hold up for 5 or more years before needing sanding or replacing. I don't mind spending more on something that should last longer (gates) and less on the mundane (benches) (exotics like teak are just a bit too pricey to consider). The example that is irking me right now is a small bench with cast iron legs and arms. Current wood is white oak that was sanded and sealed with multiple coats of spar varnish last spring. It needs to be done over again so I was thinking of just replacing the oak slats with ipe or some other more durable wood.
Thanks! -Bruce
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Actually you do not have to stain or seal any of those woods. None are going to hold their color with out regular every year or two redo's.

That is not unique to the SW.
Maintenance sucks, I just want some wood that can be used to

If you want to build it and forget it for the next 30 to 50 years, go with Ipe. It has a life span of about 50 years outdoors. It is a medium dark wood to start with but will fade to a lighter color within the year. It will however require no maintenance and is kind to bare feet when installed. It does not splinter.
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Right, From what I understand a wood choice from this group of three would let me escape from the "finishing" process.

Hmmm. I had one fellow building a deck with ipe state that micro splinters are a constant issue (resands the railings periodically). I don't really care about any color changes, I just want the durability without having to apply any form of finish or do routine sanding on items that get sat upon.
Ipe still looks like a good choice due to its better structural properties (gates) versus the softer redwoods. I've seen purple heart around on occasion for not to bad of price and I know it is big for structural stuff in SA. The spousal unit would really go for the color 8^)
Thanks for the reply -Bruce
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Teak seems pretty good too. These days it might be cheaper to buy a chair from Sams and bust it up for the wood tho.
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I work with Ipe quite often and while it does have a few splinters where you malke a cut, as with any wood they disappear after you sand the edge. Most deck companies sell the fact that Ipe does not splinter after the surface has been smoothed. I have never witnessed a problem with Ipe in an out door application. You can buy Ipe decking planks that already have rounded edges and is 5/4 thick.

Depending on the type Purple Heart you end up with, It may not remain pruple for long after being exposed to the sun light. Some will turn brown some will become more purple. Any way If you have never worked with Ipe, it is almost as hard as a rock, and HEAVY. Carbide blades and drilled holes will be required with each screw.

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On Fri, 7 Nov 2003 8:42:06 -0700, Leon wrote

I'll have to find some sources for the decking material. I imagine it should be cheaper than the hardwood resellers stuff.

Good! I'll put away the WWII and burn up some of the cheap carbide I have stashed away. -Bruce
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I'm in Albuquerque and have used cedar for a number of small outdoor projects, including a cedar fence 20+ years ago when we put in a pool. The fence has outlasted the pool by several years now. I did a redwood stain on the fence but only because I wanted the reddish color. Other things I've made with cedar and redwood have lasted well and aged due to the sun. Inthe case of cedar it turned brown and the redwood lightened, sun bleach. If you can handle the cost, redwood will do real well in this environment, little sanding and no splinters to speak of. I've never used either of the other two you mention.
Bruce Rowen wrote:

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On Thu, 6 Nov 2003 15:50:32 -0700, Grandpa wrote

I have my current walk through gate made from cedar (yellow I think), the stuff you use for fence pickets. It works well, but does go through a lot of dimensional changes which may cause problems in some of my aplications (benches) and it is a bit lacking in strength. I have several bird feeders however (yellow and aromatic) that cedar is perfect for. I need to make a patio cover for which I think redwood will be ideal, good to know It should last.
Thanks for the input Grandpa! -Bruce
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brought forth from the murky depths:

Redwood is good, and produced locally so it's cheaper. It weathers the least of these three.
Cyprus is a country/island, turkey. Uh, I meant "near Turkey". For more info, call our friends, the CIA: http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/geos/cy.html
Cypress is a wood. Impoat'd fum Misipi. OK.
Ipe is good. Imported from SA. HEAVY!
As do all woods, all 3 will weather and turn gray. Yuck. I hate gray. Oil your damned wood, wouldya, guys?
-- Friends Don't Let Friends Eat Turkey and Drive --
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+ + + Wrong continent! PvR
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schreef

SA, South America is the correct continent as well as CA, Central America and Mexico.
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+ + + SA as a geographic designation is to be taken as meaning South Africa. Sure, locally it may occasionally used to mean South America, South Australia or whatever, but unless you specify a context it is a country in Africa.
As to what CA means geographically, I will leave that to others. PvR
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schreef

America
Sure,
With that thought process, I wonder what initials are used for Saudi Arabia??
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+ + + You may be on to something there. Never had anything to do with that country. Not known for its wood, is it? PvR
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On Fri, 7 Nov 2003 12:19:17 +0100, "P van Rijckevorsel"

Damn, ya mean they moved Brazil out of South America? Durn fool politicians, anyway. http://ipe-wood.com/tech.html
(Leave it to a European to think SA = South Africa...or was it Swiss Alps? ;)
-- Friends Don't Let Friends Eat Turkey and Drive --
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LOL I was thinkin, he was thinkin, SA meant SanAntonio... ;~)
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depths:
+ + + Why do provide a link that does not support your position? No "sa" or "SA" to be found.
+ + +

+ + + Or anybody who ever mailed something intercontinental ... PvR
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P van Rijckevorsel wrote:

Read the first sentence of the link:
"An incredibly durable Brazilian Hardwood rated by the US Forest Lab for 25 years plus."
-- Jack Novak Buffalo, NY - USA (Remove "SPAM" from email address to reply)
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On Sun, 9 Nov 2003 09:54:35 +0100, "P van Rijckevorsel"

It's a link to Brazilian hardwoods, and I've been told that Brazil was in South America. Make the conceptual jump!

I'd write 'South Africa' or 'South America' on an ICBMailer. YMMV.
-------------------------------------------------------- Murphy was an Optimist ---------------------------- http://diversify.com Comprehensive Website Development
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+ + + Let's see, you say ipe comes from SA, then to support this provide a link that claims it comes from Brazil, and from this you expect people to deduce where it really comes from. Actually there is not a concept to be found in there. You are just waving words about. + + +

+ + + Actually you believe in the reverse of Murphy's Law. "If by any stretch of the imagination it could go right I have done my bit. If it goes wrong it is anybody's fault but mine." PvR
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