Re: Untreated wood for outdoor furniture?

Most 2x4s in this part of the country(N.E.) are spruce, not pine. Both pine and spruce are poor choices for outdoor funiture. Varnishing them will help, but will be a PIA to do it every year. The best, but most expensive choice is teak. Mahogany is also very good. Cypress, cedar and white oak (not red oak) are also good. I'd probably go with cedar and treat it with a water sealant.

Remove the 'remove' in my address to e:mail me.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Sam Hopkins wrote:

Thompson's doesn't prevent weathering. Having it change to its natural color is normal and expected.
--
Michael McIntyre ---- Silvan < snipped-for-privacy@users.sourceforge.net>
Linux fanatic, and certified Geek; registered Linux user #243621
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Silvan wrote:

It been my experience, that after a couple of months, Thompson's doesn't prevent anything.
-- Jack Novak Buffalo, NY - USA
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I agree. Paint or stain is a much better protector.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
one thing it doesn't prevent is me getting pissed off when I see how quickly T.W. degrades. I learned that valuable lesson many years ago when I foolishly thought it would protect a redwood deck. Ha! Water beads up for a few months, and then poof! it's time to recoat.
dave
Nova wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Dave K. wrote:

It can be done, and it works, but you have to be *religious* about keeping up with the varnish. *Multiple* coats *every* year, or the stuff will start to crack, and the wood will weather in these cracks and start to look a lot worse than if you had just let the damn thing weather naturally. DAMHIKT.

Possibly true, but pine isn't very strong, and would not fare well in a 5' unsupported span. It will also flex a lot and I think that would exacerbate any problems you have keeping the weather off of it. If the design allows for such a thing, you might consider doing some glue-ups to make T or I shaped members, which would improve the strength considerably. (Or else just stack some cinderblocks in the middle of the thing for support. :)
Pine *can* be suitable for outdoor furniture. It wouldn't be my first choice, but my grandfather has some pine swings that he built in the '50s. They get a thick coating of green paint once every so often (I really have no idea, but I don't think he paints them annually... maybe every five years or so...) and have lasted forever. They're also built like tanks. Thick boards, well-attached.

It would cost a lot more than 3X more here, since I can't buy cedar any way except motor freight from some mail-order lumber dealer.
I think I can get hemlock. I'd probably use that. Anyway, if it were me, being a lazy bastard, I'd just use whatever I could get that would be reasonably weather-resistant, slap it on, and let it weather. Throw some Thompson's on it when I could be bothered, but let it acquire the natual patina that Nature intends wood to have when left out in the elements.
--
Michael McIntyre ---- Silvan < snipped-for-privacy@users.sourceforge.net>
Linux fanatic, and certified Geek; registered Linux user #243621
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

They have it at Lowes around here (Fla)
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I probably would not use treated pine for a picnic table. I built my table/chairs from redwood. It's a bit expensive unless you are in the western US. Cypress is ~ 1/3 the cost of redwood. White oak is another good choice, although a bit heavy for a large piece of furniture. Expect regular pine, even if painted, to rot in a few years.
On Tue, 2 Sep 2003 09:09:25 -0500, "Dave K."

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I just added a built-in bench on my deck and rather than risk splinters from cedar I used Trex for the seat and back rest, the remainder is VG cedar. I finished it with Penofin's "Knot Wood" stain. A relatively new product developed to finish synthetic decking and it worked well. Good color match with the rest of the cedar.
It looks like this stain, applied to weathered and somewhat white Trex will restore the color to it's previous appearance.
Phil
Dave K. wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Given all of the health concerns with treated wood, I'd be weary of using it for something that I'm sitting on. (At least find the safer stuff). Really, I'd use a more appropriate wood. IPE and teak are amoung the best choices. I know that IPE doesn't ever need to be sealed, though it will turn silver if you don't. Teak is abviously a great choice since some of the best outdoor furniture is made from it.
-Matt
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Tue, 2 Sep 2003 09:09:25 -0500, "Dave K."

[snip]
No advice on the type of wood, but on that 5' span, have you screwed in from below a support block that ties the 2x4's together? There is probably a special name for it. I still have one of the two bench/tables my Dad bought 45 years ago. The benches are 8' long -- span maybe 6'. I think the seat and back parts are made of 2 2x8s each. At mid span there is a block under each and there has never been a sag -- and I come from a large-large family.
BTW, my guess is that it is made of redwood -- matched the clapboard house. Got restained every so many years -- yet, the one I have and which is still sound (buried at the moment under the porch on a slab) has not been stained in 20 years.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
ACE brand deck and siding stain is, along with all other ACE products, the BEST on the market. This includes ACE brand Marine Spar Varnish, the longest-lasting and most beautiful coating I have ever used on mahogany and teak (yes) on my boats, and also on pine such as on Atrium Door and thousands of board-feet of knotty pine I installed in my former home. I say this by comparison to other brands, not just convenience or brand loyalty. ACE has ALWAYS out-performed any other coatings I have ever used on anything, and I have used many, on any surface or substrate, BAR NONE. Take it or leave it, those are the facts. I will not screw around looking for anything else. Whatever ACE makes is the BEST PAINT and VARNISH. Peroid.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

A friend of mine recently made some outdoor furniture using ipe. Came out very nice and is supposed to last up to 40 years outdoors, untreated. He gave it a coat of oil and it looks great. Plus a 5 foot span should not be a problem with ipe - it's like steel. It's a little pricy, but still should be cheaper than teak, and cheaper than replacing untreated 2x4s every few years.
-Chris
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Site Timeline

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.